Read Write Inc Phonics

Phonics at St Sidwell's
We use Ruth Miskin's Read Write Inc phonics programme from Reception - Year 2 and where needed, higher up the school. It is a comprehensive literacy programme, weaving decoding, comprehension, writing and spelling together seamlessly. 
Fred talk. 
At school we use a toy called Fred who can only speak in sounds, not whole words.  We call this Fred Talk. If children can put spoken sounds together to make a word, they will eventually learn to do the same with written sounds.

Nonsense words (Alien words) 

As well as learning to read and to blend real words, the children meet “Nonsense words.” These words present an opportunity to assess a child’s ability to decode using phonics. Children who can read non-words should have the skills to decode almost any unfamiliar word. Nonsense words will also feature in the Year One Phonics Screening check in the summer term.


How to help your child at home.
  • Below are some resources that will help you and your child practise together at home. When they are confident and can read all of the Set 1 Sounds speedily then move onto Set 2 followed by Set 3. Each sound comes with a picture and a rhyme to help your child learn it.
  • The Oxford Owl website has an eBook library with a large selection of reading books, including many from the RWI scheme. We recommend children read each book three times, as they would at school: once to read the words correctly, a second time with more fluency, and a third time in a ‘storyteller voice’ that shows their understanding.
  • Speedy Green Word Slideshows. These are also on the Oxford Owl website and link to the set of sounds that your child is currently learning and the book level they are on. They help to build your child's reading fluency as they are high frequency words found in lots of stories. 
  • Red Words slideshow. Red words are what we call words the children cannot sound out as they do not follow the phonics language patterns. Their letters make uncommon sounds. The only way to learn these words is from memory, so they need lots of practise!