Phonics and Reading


At Dove Bank Primary school, we’re passionate about reading. In order to become competent, independent learners, children need to be confident readers. During their time at our school, children will read and grow to love a variety of books. We hope to impart to them our passion for reading for pleasure.

With that in mind, we’re following a new ‘Reading Revolution’, based on renowned author Michael Rosen’s 20 point plan.

You can read the original plan by following the link:


You can get involved in our ‘Reading Revolution’ in any of the following ways:

  • You can read with your child, ideally three times a week or more. Once you do, you can fill in your child’s Reading Record to show their progress and any feedback you’d like to share with the class teacher. Children are rewarded with a caterpillar leg for reading at least 3 times a week – the class with the most caterpillar legs at the end of each half-term gets a special treat.
  • You can encourage your child to change their reading book at our school library.
  • You can access electronic books via ‘Active Learn’- all pupils have been given a password and username.
  • You can use our recommended reads list to find the right book for your child. These lists have been compiled from our favourite books and books we view as age appropriate. Feel free to use books from other year groups if you and your child would like a challenge (see below).
  • You can attend our parent open mornings/afternoons on how best to make a reader.
  • You can come to our Book Fair with your child and pick up books of interest.
  • You can use ‘Teach your monster to read’ to practice essential reading skills and the phonics they’ll be learning at school:
  • We often hold ‘Bring And Swap a Book’ events. This is a chance for your child to exchange a book they’ve read for a new one, and in turn provide their peers with a new reading experience.


We want to be a ‘Reading School’. Our mission is get our children reading, not just for work or research, but for enjoyment! You play an important role in helping us to make ‘every child a reader’, by encouraging your child to share books with you at home. It really does make a difference.

Reception Recommended Reads

Y1 Recommended Reads

Y2 Recommended Reads

Y3 Recommended Reads

Y4 Recommended Reads

Y5 Recommended Reads

Y6 Recommended Reads


aut 2015 057PHONICS

Children in Reception and Key Stage 1 follow the synthetic phonics approach, using a combination of the ‘Letters and Sounds’ programme and the Abacus Phonics Bug programme, in which individual letters or letter sounds are blended to form groups of letters or sounds, and those groups are then blended to form complete words.

Click on the link below to find out more about Abacus ‘Phonics Bug’:

Our daily phonics sessions are fun, involving lots of speaking, listening and games.

The emphasis is on children’s active participation. They learn to use their phonic knowledge for reading and writing activities and in their independent play.

Letters and Sounds is divided into six phases, with each phase building on the skills and knowledge of previous learning. There are no big leaps in learning. Children have time to practise and rapidly expand their ability to read and spell words.

They are also taught to read and spell ‘tricky words’ –words with spellings that are unusual or that children have not yet been taught. These include the words ‘to’, ‘was’, ‘said’ and ‘the’ – you can’t really break the sounds down for such words so it’s better to just ‘recognise’them.

We teach a wide range of nursery rhymes and songs and read good books to and with the children. This helps to increase the number of words they know– their vocabulary – and helps them talk confidently about books. The children learn to identify rhyme and alliteration.


Phonics Games



We use the Oxford Reading Tree as our main reading scheme in Key stage 1.  This provides a variety of fiction and non–fiction books to develop children’s reading range and ability to decode ‘high-frequency’ words.

We complement this system however, by using other scheme books which focus on supporting pupils’ phonics development: Pearson Phonics Bug and ORT Songbirds. 

Children learn to read at different rates. Once pupils finish the Oxford ‘reading scheme’ in Key Stage 1, we encourage them to become ‘free readers’ who can choose their own books from the ‘Challenge Box’ – a selection of texts designed to deepen and broaden reading ability for our most confident and able readers.

Reading At Home Booklet 2014


Ways you can support your children at home