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At St Anne's Primary School we follow Bug Club Phonics to deliver our phonics lessons. Bug Club Phonics is one of the DfE’s approved phonics teaching programmes and aims to help all children in our school learn to read by the age of six in a fun and accessible way. Following the order of Letters and Sounds, the whole school programme matches the National Curriculum and Early Learning Goals.

Phonics is a method of teaching reading and writing by which children are systematically taught the relationships between the sounds in our language and the letters used to represent those sounds.  Once children have been taught which sounds are linked to which letters, they are able to crack the code and can confidently have a go at reading and writing anything.

High-quality phonic teaching secures the crucial skills of word recognition that, once mastered, enable children to read fluently and automatically. Once children are fluent readers, they are able to concentrate on the meaning of the text. The ‘simple view of reading’ shows that both dimensions are necessary. However, the balance between word recognition and language comprehension shifts as children acquire secure and automatic decoding skills and progress from ‘learning to read’ to ‘reading to learn’ for purpose and pleasure. The ultimate goal of learning to read is comprehension. Furthermore, as children develop knowledge of graphemes and their phoneme correspondences, they are able to segment words and apply their phonic knowledge to encode to spell with increasing confidence and accuracy. 

At St Anne's, phonics sessions

  • Are taught daily in Reception and Year 1 for no longer than 20 minutes such that the vast majority of children are confident readers by the end of Key Stage 1. Year 2 retakes are taught two to three times a week, resulting in most children starting KS2 having passed the phonics screening.
  • Follow the DfE Letters and Sounds programme through Bug Club Phonics.
  • Follow a planned programme, building on previous learning to secure progress.
  • Follow the Revisit/Review-Teach-Practise-Apply approach.
  • Are pacey and active.

No Nonsense spelling

  • No Nonsense spelling is taught 3 to 4 times a week in Year 2 as a 20 minute session enabling most children to be confident spellers in KS1 spelling patterns, by the end of KS1.
  • In sessions, Phase 5 sounds are repeatedly assessed to ensure children maintain progress in their writing.
  • Spellings are assessed in context, applying them in a sentence at the end of each week. Children should be able confidently to apply these spelling patterns in their writing.

Phonics sounds

Please click on the vidoes below to see our children and staff pronouncing the different phonic sounds. 



Phase 2

Phase 2 is traditionally taught in Reception, however some children in other year groups may need to revisit these sounds. This phase is about learning purest sounds in our English language, building the foundations for reading and spelling words. It is therefore important that children can pronounce these sounds correctly ( see video below). 

By the end of Phase two, children should be able to read some vowel consonant (vc) and consonant vowel consonant (CVC) words. For example:

- if (cv)

-at (cv)

- sat (cvc)

- duck (cvc)

Children will also learn to read the words ‘the, to, go, I and no.’

Sounds are learnt in sets:

Set 1: s, a, t, p
Set 2: i, n, m, d
Set 3: g, o, c, k
Set 4: ck, e, u, r
Set 5: h, b, f, ff, l, ll, ss

Phase 3

Phase 3 is then taught for a large chunk of Reception and again revisited for some children not secure in phase 3 sounds. In this phase children are taught another 25 graphemes and continue to blend and segment CVC words for reading and spelling. These new graphemes give the children the knowledge to blend and segment two syllable words. For example:

- rain (CVC)

-goat (CVC)

- hammer ( two syllables)

- airport ( two syllables)

Children then start to understand that two or three letters together can make one sound (digraph or trigraph).

Continued sets taught:

Set 6: j, v, w, x

Set 7: y, z, zz, qu

Consonant digraphs: ch, sh, th, ng

Vowel digraphs: ai, ee, igh, oa, oo, ar, or, ur, ow, oi, ear, air, ure, er

See video below for pronunciations. 


Phase 5

In Phase 5,children broaden their knowledge of graphemes and phonemes. They learn alternative pronunciations of graphemes including split digraphs.

- ay, ou, ie, ea

- oy, ir, ue, aw

- wh, ph, ew, oe, au, ey

- i_e, o_e,  a_e, u_e, e_e (split diagraphs)

See video below for pronunciations

phase_5 2.mp4

The power of magic 'e' in split digraphs

Nessy Reading Strategy Magic e.mp4

- i_e, o_e,  a_e, u_e, e_e (split digraphs)

When learning split digraph children are taught that the vowel says its name and the 'e' stays silent. 

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