Primary Phonics


This guide outlines some of the important ways Phonics is taught at Buxton School. We follow the Letters and Sounds phonics programme and in EYFS and KS1 we do have discrete phonic sessions. However, it is important that Phonics skills are taught across the curriculum and not just during the specified Literacy sessions on the timetable.

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 to achieve fluent reading. 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.  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.


  • Phonics sessions are taught discretely every day and practitioners ensure a high quality, systematic, synthetic approach at a brisk pace.
  • In the Nursery, children enjoy learning Nursery Rhymes and Voice Play songs. Rhymes sensitise a child to the individual units of sound that make up a word. The rhythms present in nursery rhymes help children to remember the words, exercising their auditory memory skills. In line with the rest of the school, we follow the Letters and Sounds Programme, starting in Phase One.
  • The aim is that all children will begin to develop their phonic knowledge and decoding skills throughout key stage one in order to become fluent readers.
  • A multi-sensory approach is favoured, which suits all visual, auditory and kinaesthetic learners. Sessions include opportunities for active involvement and creative activities.
  • Children are taught that phonemes should be blended from left to right in order to read and that words can be segmented into their phonemes for spelling and that this is the reverse of blending. It is demonstrated to children throughout the phonics session and reinforced whenever appropriate in other sessions, differentiated group activities and within continuous provision.
  • Throughout the 6 phases, all children are taught the grapheme/phoneme correspondences, high frequency words (including those that do not conform completely to grapheme/phoneme correspondence rules) and how to use their phonetic knowledge to read and write both regular and irregular words.
  • Children’s progress is assessed through observations during phonics sessions and through reading and writing and through reading tests carried out during the year.

Book Bag Club

Buxton Primary School will further enhance Phonics for parents by offering an after-school session called the Book Bag Club. This will give parents opportunities to see phonics resources and discuss any concerns with a member of staff. It will also be an opportunity to discuss homework and how you can support your child at home. We will contact parents when this will resume. 


Useful Links:

Please find below some links that you might find useful to use at home: 


Useful Documents:

Phonics for parents

Read with Phonics Parents Guide

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