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Ropsley CE Primary School

Ropsley CE Primary School

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Read Write Inc Phonics Scheme

Read Write Inc Phonics Scheme

Read, Write, Inc is the phonics scheme we use to teach reading and spelling in Early Years and Key Stage One. We have chosen Read, Write, Inc because we want our children to learn to read as quickly as possible, and then read widely and become lifelong readers. 


This video, taken from the Ruth Miskin website, explains the scheme in more detail:


Teaching phonics at Rodings 

We start teaching the programme in your child’s Reception year and then continue until they have worked their way through the whole reading scheme, usually this is during Years One or Two. We assess all children on the scheme every 6-8 weeks, to ensure that they are placed in the perfect group for their reading ability. This also allows us to quickly identify any children who need some support to access the learning at the level of the group. If this arises, we provide one-to-one tutoring for the child in accordance with the Read, Write, Inc scheme, to help them make rapid progress and once again be at the level of their group. Groups are taught by either teachers or LSAs who have had Read, Write, Inc phonics training; in utilising so many staff, we can ensure that groups are kept as small as possible and that the teaching the children receive is tailored to their needs. Sessions in Reception are 20 minutes long and then 30 minutes long in Key Stage One. 

Children begin by learning the Set 1 sounds in a specific order. They also begin learning to blend sounds together to make words after learning the first 5 sounds, firstly through practising oral blending. Then, when they can blend independently, they progress on to reading green words.

As soon as children can read green words, they begin to read stories in their Read, Write, Inc sessions. Each storybook is matched to the sounds they can already read, which sets them up for success and helps to build their confidence with reading. It is through these storybooks that we teach children red words, which are irregular words that are not phonetically plausible and cannot be sounded out (fred talked). Each storybook is taught in the same way, with children practising reading the green words in the story and also the red words, before they begin to read the book. Children will then read the book several times to help build their fluency and comprehension skills. 

How to help at home

Read to your child

Even if your child is not yet reading words, it is so important to read stories to them. The film below explains the benefits of reading to your child:

There are also some things to think about when reading to your child:

Fred Talk

To expose your child to the idea of blending sounds together to make words, break down the words of the simple vocabulary you often use at home. For example, “please pass me that c - u - p”, “let’s sit on the r - u - g”. This will help your child to practise their oral blending as they can repeat the sounds back to you and then say the word. 

Building vocabulary

Children need a rich vocabulary in order to develop high levels of comprehension. The more words your child has in their vocabulary, the more they will understand when they read. You could try using alternative words for things at home, rather than saying you are pleased that they have tidied their toys, you could say that you are delighted, ecstatic, overjoyed. 

Reading with your child

Your child will bring home reading books to share with you:

  • a Book Bag Book which corresponds to the colour band they are on in Read, Write, Inc sessions

  • an Oxford Reading Tree book 

  • a library book 

  • a black and white version of the book they are reading in their Read, Write, Inc session (Green and upwards). 

When helping your child to decode words at home, it’s really important to pronounce the sounds correctly. Here is a helpful guide to show you how we are teaching your child to pronounce the sounds:

Practising the sounds 

During your child’s Reception year the Friends (of Rodings) will buy them a pack of Read, Write, Inc resources. This is the ‘My Reading and Writing Kit’ and includes:

  • set of Set 1 phonics flashcards 

  • handwriting book to develop letter formation 

  • wipe-clean sheet and pen to practise writing the sounds 

  • bedroom frieze to show the picture prompts for each sound 

  • parent handbook offering practical advice. 

These resources are great for you to help your child practise sound recognition. If your child is struggling with learning to blend, there is a useful video on the Ruth Miskin Youtube channel called ‘Parent video: sound blending’, which demonstrates an activity you could do to support your child. This activity is very similar to the type of one-to-one support we would give your child at school if they need it. 

RWI Glossary:




Fred is a frog puppet we use in sessions. He can only speak in sounds. 

Fred talk 

sounding out a word, saying each of the sounds before blending

Fred fingers

‘Pinching’ each sound from a word on your fingers to help spell a word

Green words

Decodable words

Red words

Irregular words that cannot be sounded out

Story Green words

decodable words that will be included in the storybook 

Speedy green words

decodable words in the storybook that children should be able to read at speed rather than fred talking first. 

Fred in your Head

still sounding out a word but doing so in your head rather than out loud, helps build fluency. 

Special friends

Two or three letters working together to make one sound e.g. sh, ch, igh, air, a-e, i-e. 

Useful resources

The Year 1 screening check

What is the screening?

Every Year 1 child in the country will be taking the statutory phonics screening check in the same week. The check is very similar to tasks the children already complete during phonics lessons.


What will the children do?

Based on last year we estimate that each check will take 4 to 9 minutes to complete. They will be asked to ‘sound out’ a word and blend the sounds together. e.g. d-o-g – dog 

The check will consist of 40 words and non-words. Children will be told if the word is a real or ‘alien’ word, with a corresponding alien image.

How will it be administered?

The class teacher will conduct all of the screening checks with the children. The children will complete the check one to one in a quiet area of the school. We are not permitted to indicate to the children at the time whether they have correctly sounded out and / or blended the word.  

And the results….?

Children will be scored against a national standard. We will inform you of whether they fall below or within this standard, and all children will receive a certificate for taking part. If your child’s score falls below the national standard they can re-take the Phonics Screening Check in year 2. 

When will it happen?

The screening will take place throughout the week beginning Monday 13th June. It has been designed so that children of all abilities will be able to take part.

How can you help?

Encourage them to use their sounds and actions to find the sound they need. Children can practise their phonics by playing games online. The children may like -  ‘poopdeck pirates’ or ‘picnic on Pluto’.

REMEMBER:  Phonics is not the only way you become a good reader. Continue to read with your child each night and encourage them to:

                Sound out, re-read to check it makes sense, and use pictures for clues.

                Ask questions about the book;

                And most importantly ENJOY READING!