The future of phonics

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By Judy Noyliteracy consultant

The coalition government’s attitude to phonics teaching is yet to be made fully clear

Boy reading book

In 2006, Sir Jim Rose conducted an independent review of early reading, where he stated that ‘high quality phonic work’ should be the prime means for teaching children how to read and write.

In light of this, The Primary National Strategies produced a phonics resource, Letters and Sounds: Principles and practice of high quality phonics (DCSF, 2007), that encapsulated the recommendations of Sir Jim’s Independent review of the teaching of early reading. The programme’s main aims were to help practitioners and teachers to develop children’s speaking and listening skills and to teach high-quality phonics work (from age five in most cases).

Many authorities recommend this extremely good programme. It provides support for teaching phonological awareness (which begins in Early Years and continues throughout the programme) followed by suggestions for teaching a systematic, synthetic phonics programme throughout Reception, Year 1 and Year 2.

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