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Bearbrook Combined School

An Academy of the Great Learners Trust





  • Phonics is taught daily to all children in Reception and Key Stage One. Phonics teaching is systematic, engaging, lively and interactive and follows the Rocket Phonics programme.
  • At Bearbrook, we teach children in whole class groups. This allows children to access age appropriate Phonics.
  • Every Phonics lesson has a clear precise structure of revisit, teach, practise and apply. Rocket Phonics provides a combination of digital and printed resources, and a fully matched series of decodable reading books.
  • Children at Bearbrook are taught two letter sounds per week in line with the Phonics programme.
  • Children are taught common exception words throughout the week. They learn how to read and write these words.
  • Children in Years 1 and 2 use the Rocket Phonics pupil practice booklets at the end of each Phonics session. These enable children to practise and apply blending and segmenting skills at letter-sound, word, sentence and text levels. Children in Reception are introduced to the pupil practise booklets in the Summer Term preparing them to transition into Year 1.
  • Each class use a moveable Phonics board with a Phonics display which is current and builds up over time so children can refer to this to assist them when reading and writing.
  • Daily Phonics interventions are in place for the lowest 20% of children in the class, these focus on pencil grip and making marks on paper, letter formation, recap of phonemes and common exception words, and blending and segmenting. Extra support is provided to those children in Year 2 who have not passed the Phonics screening in Year 1. Extra support is also given to children in Years 3 and 4 who finished Key Stage One being below the expected age-related standard in Phonics.
  • Half termly assessments take place in Reception and Year 1. We use the Rocket Phonics assessments which test the children on the phonemes and common exception words taught that half term. The results from these assessments are used to drive our intervention groups and help create the focus for the revisit section of the Phonics lessons. The children in Year 2 complete termly Pixl spelling assessments.
  • The children are provided with reading books that match their current Phonics level. We encourage the children to read these books regularly at home. Children change their reading books twice a week. The staff check children’s reading levels at the end of every half term to ensure the children are accessing the correct reading scheme book. If you would like more information about the reading colour bands and advice on how to read with your child please see the link below.
  • Children in Reception and KS1 take part in daily group guided reading sessions four times each week. The teacher uses the Rocket Phonics target practise readers which consolidate the phonemes and common exception words that the children have learnt that week.
  • Our children in preschool are exposed to Phonics in the classroom provision and in daily Phonics sessions. These sessions focus on developing the children’s listening skills and help them to distinguish different sounds. They use our tailored “Early Phonics” programme. Children in preschool also take home wordless books in the Summer term before they start school to help develop their love of reading.