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Learning the correct letter sounds is one of the first things the children do when they come to school. Getting the sounds correct is one of the best ways parents can support their child reading at home. Below is a video of the pronunciation of all the letter sounds your child will be learning. You may need to right click on the video below to give permission for your computer to run it.



Bryn Offa CE Primary School – Phonics Programme


To develop children’s early reading skills at Bryn Offa, we follow the Letters and Sounds programme (DfES 2007) for phonics development. This programme aims to build on children’s speaking and listening skills, as well as preparing children for learning to read through the development of phonic knowledge and reading skills. This programme is very detailed and systematic for the teaching of phonics, from the age of five, through to seven. There are six overlapping phases to Letters and Sounds, which can be seen in the table below;


Phase Phonic Knowledge and Skills
Phase One (Nursery/ Reception) Activities are divided into seven aspects, including environmental sounds, instrumental sounds, body sounds, rhythm and rhyme, alliteration, voice sounds and finally oral blending and segmenting.
Phase Two (Reception)

up to 6 weeks

Learning 19 letters of the alphabet and one sound for each. Blending sounds together to make words. Segmenting words into their separate sounds. Beginning to read simple captions.
Phase 3 (Reception)

up to 12 weeks


The remaining 7 letters of the alphabet, one sound for each. Graphemes such as ch, oo, th representing the remaining phonemes not covered by single letters. Reading captions, sentences and questions. On completion of this phase, children will have learnt the “simple code”, i.e. one grapheme for each phoneme in the English language.
Phase 4 (Reception)

4 to 6 weeks

No new grapheme-phoneme correspondences are taught in this phase. Children learn to blend and segment longer words with adjacent consonants, e.g. swim, clap, jump.
Phase 5 (Throughout

Year 1)

Now we move on to the “complex code”. Children learn more graphemes for the phonemes which they already know, plus different ways of pronouncing the graphemes they already know.
Phase 6 (Throughout

Year 2 and beyond)

Working on spelling, including prefixes and suffixes, doubling and dropping letters etc.

(Source: Letters and Sounds, DfES, 2007)


Phonics Screening Check

At the end of Year 1, children undertake a Phonics Screening Check. This is a statutory assessment that was introduced in 2012 to all Year 1 pupils and is a quick and easy check of your child’s phonics knowledge. It comprises of a list of 40 words, of which 20 are real words, and the other 20 are ‘nonsense’ or ‘alien’ words. It will assess your child’s phonics skills and knowledge learnt through reception and year 1. Your child will read one-one with their current teacher so it is a familiar face. Children will be asked to ‘sound out’ a word and blend the sounds together. The check is very similar to work the children already undertake during their phonics lessons. All year 1 pupils will take the phonics screening check during the Summer Term.


Ways to help your child at home with phonics:-

  • Play games with magnetic/ foam letters to see how quickly your child can put them in alphabetical order while singing the alphabet song, or see how quickly your child can spell words made up of the phonic sounds they have been learning in school.
  • In the early stages of reading, encourage children to point at the letters when they are sounding them out.
  • Encourage your child to ‘sound out’ any unfamiliar words, and then blend left to right.
  • Look for words around the house or when travelling look for road signs to see if you can spot familiar words and letter patterns.
  • Encourage your child to write notes, e-mails, and letters to your friends and family.
  • Encourage and support your child to read regularly at home, or take them to the library to find books that interest and engage them. Make it fun and enjoyable for them!
  • Let your child see you reading magazines, newspapers, books for enjoyment as they will want to copy you!
  • Praise your child when they are reading and using their phonic skills!



Websites to access at home (which provide more detail on synthetic phonics programmes, and activities to support you and your child at home);