St Alban's Catholic Primary School

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Read, Write Inc Phonics

At St Alban’s Primary School we follow Read Write Inc. (RWI) – a synthetic phonics programme which provides a systematic approach to teaching reading. The alphabetic code is taught first so that children learn to recognise and correctly pronounce the sounds that different letters or groups of letters make. Children then learn how to blend these sounds together in order to read words. The sessions use lively storybooks which are closely matched to the children’s knowledge of phonics contain words that they can confidently decode. This means that even early on, children experience plenty of success when reading.



From Reception through to Year 2 we deliver daily phonics and reading sessions. We stream the classes across KS1 so that the children are grouped according to ability. This means that they are reading at their own level, every day. Each group has a designated learning zone within the school with consistent teaching resources and displays. RWI Reading materials are clearly organised into bands and stored centrally for ease of access. Any child that has not reached the required level by the end of Year 2 will continue phonics into KS2. Any child that requires phonics intervention in years 5 and 6 will take part in the ‘Fresh Start’ programme.


Teaching Approach

All staff involved in the delivery of phonics and guided reading sessions (teachers and teaching assistants) receive training and support. This shared understanding of the RWI approach ensures that everyone is teaching as effectively and consistently as possible. Each session has a clear purpose, follows a structured plan and is part of a systematic approach towards teaching the 44 common sounds. Revision and consolidation are also vital to further embed the learning. A lively and fast-paced delivery keeps all children engaged and focused praise really does motivate them to learn. Fun, bright and child-friendly resources accompany each lesson which helps to promote enjoyment of reading.


Parent video: How to say the sounds

Year One Common Exception Words

Reading for Pleasure

At St Alban's we place great importance in the advantages of reading for pleasure. We understand that it can result in increased empathy, improved relationships with others and significantly boost well-being. Literature provides pleasure to listeners and readers. It is a relaxing escape from daily problems, and it fills leisure moments with joy. Making time for recreational reading and using high-quality literature helps to create enthusiastic readers and improve their achievement. 

Story Book Time

The children are listening to the following story books.


The Growing Story by Ruth Krauss


The Growing Story by Ruth Krauss is a delightful EYFS/KS1 book all about growing bodies linked to the seasons. A little boy, some chicks and a puppy live on a farm. They see the first signs of spring growing in the fields and the little boy asks his mother if he and the puppy will grow too. Of course you will, she assures him, and as spring turns to summer he sees his dog growing taller and the chicks become chickens. But as the seasons change and everything grows around him, the little boy feels like he has stayed the same. Can he really be growing too?

Magic Moment

By Niall Breslin


Freddie is excited to go swimming at the pool with his Dad but when he gets there, he becomes a little bit nervous and refuses to go in, returning home instead. When he tells Nana about his feelings, she shows him a little magic trick that will make him feel better the next time he is feeling reluctant to go swimming.