Reading and Phonics



At Griffin Park, we believe that reading is the key to success and underpins children's access to the curriculum; it clearly impacts on their achievement. To be able to read, children need to be taught an efficient strategy to decode words. That strategy is phonics. Phonic decoding skills must be practised until children become automatic and fluent reading is established. 


Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised is a complete systematic synthetic phonics programme (SSP) and it is the programme that we have adopted at Griffin Park

We prioritise the teaching of phonics; we teach phonics daily in Year R and Year 1. It is vitally important that children review and revisit Grapheme Phoneme Correspondences (GPCs) and words, daily, weekly and across terms and years, in order to move this knowledge into the children's long term memory. Our consistent approach to phonics ensures that children are given the best possible foundation for reading, writing and language skills. 


Children need to learn to read as quickly and reasonably as possible, so that they can move from learning to read, to reading to learn, giving them access to the treasure house of reading. Our expectations of progression are aspirational yet achievable; children who are not keeping up with their peers are given additional practise immediately through keep-up sessions.


Children enjoy a range of multi-sensory resources to support their phonics learning. On-going assessment of children's progress takes place and the books children read in school and take home to read are fully decodable and matched to children's secure phonics knowledge. As well as fully decodable books, children take home a non-decodable book for sharing that can be either read to or with them. These books play an essential role in developing a love of reading; an important distinction is that these books are being shared with the children, but they are using fully phonically decodable books to practise their independent reading.



Follow the link below to access the videos. 

Phase 2 Grapheme Information sheet


At Griffin Park Primary School reading underpins everything that we do. Children are encouraged to read in all aspects of the curriculum and for their own pleasure. We encourage adults and children to share this love for reading. Parents play a vital role in this when supporting children's reading at home. Children's reading ages are assessed by teachers and shared with parents to stress the importance of reading at home and how they can support their children.  We also share ideas with parents about commenting in reading diaries and how they can extend their child's learning. Please take a look at the link below.  



All children will read individually with members of staff, guided reading in groups, shared reading as a whole class.  Children will also have the opportunity to selects books from our library and use iPads and other online resources to support reading.  Teachers read stories to all children every day to ignite their love of books.  


When working in groups children will read appropriately challenging texts from our reading schemes in school and also home readers.


Children also use Accelerated Reader in Key Stage 2 where they read appropriately matched books and then complete a short quiz assessing their understanding of the text. This will then allow them to select more challenging books as required. 


Due to the demands of the new curriculum we are working on fluency of reading and also developing a deeper understanding of what we have read. The children will develop these skills in guided group sessions and also in specific comprehension skills sessions using new resources and training to support this.



Reading suggestions for parents

What do we love to read? 



My Favourite Book by Mrs Clayton-Young

My favourite book in the world is Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfeild.  As a child I was mad about ballet, I loved learning how to dance almost as much as I loved to read.  Ballet Shoes is a book set in the first part of the 20th century.  It is about 3 orphans and the family they go to live with.  They all perform on the stage and go to auditions and practices all the time. 

Two years ago my sister bought me a beautifully bound copy of the book, as she remembers me reading it when I was a little girl.  I keep it in Violet's bedroom, hoping she loves it as much as I did.

I remember losing myself into this old world, and as soon as I finished the book I would start again at the beginning; I was always reading this book alongside other books I would choose.

I would really recommend this book.


My Favourite Book By Mrs Holden

One of my favourite books is a book that is designed for children and adults. It's a journal based on one of my favourite authors, Beatrix Potter.  I think I like it so much because it has lots of History in and facts about Beatrix's life as a child and later on in adulthood, when she lived and worked in the Lake District, which is a place I love to visit!  It also has photographs, drawings, sketches, maps and letters some of which Beatrix wrote and drew herself when she was alive.  In the back of the journal there is a secret compartment and inside it is The Tale of Peter Rabbit, which was her first book to  be published.  When I was little I loved reading all of her stories and looking at all the animals she could draw.  The thing I love the most about her stories is that they were all based on her own real life pets or animals that lived around her. 

My favourite book by Miss Astley


My all time favourite book has to be Harry Potter. In particular, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (the first in the series). I still remember the first time I ever saw the book. I was in year 6 and my teacher brought it in and read a chapter of it at the end of every day. I think I was mesmerised from the beginning. It was the first book I ever bought from the bookshop and I still read it now as an adult, it never gets old! I grew up with the Harry Potter saga and I absolutely believe it is the reason I am such a passionate reader now. My favourite possession is my Kindle and I now have nearly 1000 books on it!


My favourite book by Mrs Otter

My favourite book is James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl. I was in Year 5 at primary school when I first read it. I found each character fascinating. James's aunts, Spiker and Sponge, are always calling him names and they make his life a misery. If only his parents hadn't been eaten by a rhinoceros, he wouldn't be in this mess. But one day he meets a mysterious man who gives him a bag of magic crocodile tongues and so begins the adventure of his dreams.

Over the many years I have been teaching I have read this book to different classes and they have all enjoyed it as much as I have. I would definitely recommend it as a great read.




My favourite book by Mrs. Berry


The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson is one of my very favourite books.  I love the illustrations in the book by Axel Scheffler as they have so much detail and this adds to the story.  I love this book as a teacher as it has such super adjectives and great rhyme within it which helps paint a wonderful picture in our minds. I also love this book as a Mum, as I loved reading it to Joel when he was younger and I now love sharing it with Sasha (it is her favourite now too!). If you have ever been taught by me I am sure you will remember us reading lots of stories by Julia Donaldson - how many have you read?  

My Favourite Book by Mrs Edmondson



I only met Jeremy Strong when my children were about 6 years old and we borrowed this book from the library to read at bedtime. The book was so funny I think I laughed more than my boys. We would then borrow a Jeremy Strong book from the library every week until we had exhausted the library's collection. This particular set of books follows a boy called Nicholas, who has a hilarious dad with crazy ideas! He also has a rocking grandma who is a lot of fun. I was very sad when my boys were too old for bedtime stories, but occasionally get to have a sneaky read when in school. If you want a good laugh I would highly recommend Jeremy Strong.

My Favourite book by Mrs Aspinall

My favourite book has to be Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. I remember reading this book for the first time and wishing I was Alice and could go on a magical adventure like she did.

The story starts with Alice in her garden sitting under a tree, when a rabbit runs by with a waist coat on and a pocket watch. He stops and looks at his watch and says," I'm late, I'm late". Alice then follows the curious rabbit into a rabbit hole and the adventure begins.

The rabbits words are etched in my mind, "I'm late, I'm late for a very important date! No time to say hello, goodbye. I'm late, I'm late, I'm late".

My favourite part of the story is when Alice drinks from a bottle that says "drink me", then eats a biscuit that changes her size so she can fit through a tiny door. I also love the Mad Hatters tea party - it still makes me laugh when I think about it!

My daughters read this book when they were young and they too remember the 'potion', the 'rabbit' and the 'tea party'.

I had so much fun reading it. Have you read the book? What is your favourite part?

Reading for Pleasure policy