Reading and Phonics Approach at Ladywood Primary School

At Ladywood Primary School, early reading skills are taught using synthetic phonics. The school follows the ‘Song of Sounds’ scheme. This provides us with a multi-sensory approach that accommodates all learning styles.

The ‘Song of Sounds’ song gives the children a phrase and action to help them link letters and sounds. Each of our characters helps teach the children vital phonic skills – Croc with oral blending and segmenting, Sound Sorcerer with linking letters and sounds and using phonics to read and write ‘green words’, and Word Witch with reading and recognising ‘red words’ (common exception and tricky words)


Song of Sounds Stage One Song 

Song of Sounds Stage Two Song 

Song of Sounds Stage Three Song 

Phonics is taught daily in the Early Years and KS1 phases of school. Initially children’s listening skills are developed through the use of music, environmental sounds and rhyme. Pupils are then systematically taught the phonemes (sounds), how to blend the sounds all through the word for reading, and how to segment the sounds in order to write words. 

They are taught to use phonics skills and knowledge as their first approach to reading, but are also taught high frequency words which do not completely follow the phonic rules.Children are given daily opportunity to practise and embed their phonic skills throughout the day in their play.  

At home, Reception children share the letter and sounds of the day with parents using their GCP Phonics workbook and KS1 children are set weekly phonics practise on Spelling Shed.  

“Mr Thorne Does Phonics” youtube channel has useful videos to show you how to annunciate the sounds and are an easy way to practise at home too. 


The National Phonics Test is done in the June of year 1. The outcomes of this test are shared with parents. 

Reading At Ladywood Primary School, we have a range of reading schemes in school. These reading schemes are divided into different coloured ‘book bands’. Every book band includes books from a range of reading schemes so they will experience a range of stories, text types and illustrations. 

Our main schemes in school is Collins Big Cat Phonics, which is also supported by Oxford Reading Tree, Rigby Stars, Project X, and Songbirds banded books.



Articulation of phonemes

As a school we encourage parents to get involved in their children’s reading and to write in the children’s reading cards/journals when they have read with their child. 


Children are heard read individually and in guided reading groups every week throughout school. Reading lessons are also taught weekly to give children the skills for reading and to have an understanding of the text as a whole. Comprehension is paramount to successful reading and a great emphasis is placed on discussing characters, settings and answering how and why questions. We try very hard to help the children to see the links between reading and writing.


Reading for Pleasure

At Ladywood Primary School, we encourage children to develop a love of reading. We encourage children to read books with their family and to share books they enjoy. Children can choose and borrow books from our school library too.


 We have had school topics based around authors and enjoy theatre companies coming in and performing some of our favourite stories. We have had ‘story tents’ workshops in to promote fun story telling. We encourage our children to use the language they pick up in books in their own speaking and writing.