Outwoods Primary School

Phonics at Outwoods

At Outwoods Primary school, we use a systematic, synthetic, phonic programme (SSP) to teach children how to read words and support them to become fluent readers. 

The SSP programme used in our school has a systematic approach to planning and teaching phonics from Nursery to Year 2. This is primarily based around ‘Letters and Sounds’ but has been revised to provide a complete teaching programme meeting all the expectations of the National Curriculum, Early Years Statutory Framework and ‘The Reading Framework’. It has been individualised to our school, which allows us to target our pupil’s individual needs.  The prime approach is learning synthetic phonics through teaching phoneme-grapheme correspondence allowing the children to decode print.  


Phoneme – unit of sound 

Grapheme – a letter or a number of letters that represent a sound 


The Outwoods sequence of progression ensures that teachers have high expectations for coverage (see below) and learning is taught at a fast pace. Our ‘quality first’ teaching means that the scheme is rigorous and challenging, it embeds phonic knowledge whilst teaching children how to apply this to independent reading       and writing. Rehearsal and application of phoneme grapheme correspondences is at the core of our teaching sessionsensuring that all children make progress in every session.  


All children undertake regular assessments in phonics and pupils falling behind are quickly identified and support is put in place. Intervention groups are established and children’s revision of the phonic phases help children to increase fluency. These children identified for phonic intervention receive daily support sessions to help rapidly reduce gaps in learning through a robust approach to the teaching of synthetic phonics using our school scheme. 

All teaching staff have received phonic training across school and are loyal to phonics when children are decoding words or developing their reading fluency across the school.  

Our scheme has been supplemented with Oxford Reading Tree and Collins Big Cat Phonic Letters and Sounds decodable books, and children are expected to practice their new decodable skills at home.  


To summarise, our phonic approach has these key features 

  • Direct teaching in frequent, short bursts (20-25 min daily sessions)
  • Consistent approach in delivery of lessons and with resources (EYFS to Y2). Children use actions and rhymes to help remember the phoneme-grapheme correspondence.
  • Secure, systematic progression in phonics learning (see below)
  • Fast pace of learning (see below) in lessons and with reading skill coverage
  • Repeated practice to consolidate learning. Reading and writing takes place in every lesson.
  • Application of phonics using matched decodable books
  • Early identification of children at risk of falling behind, linked to the provision of effective keep-up support.

Year Group 

Expectations for Coverage 


Phase 1 


Phase 2 – Phase 5a (Phase 1 skills running throughout the year) 

Year One 

Phase 5a – Phase 5c (Phase 3 & 4 revisited throughout the year) 

Year Two 

Phase 5 consolidation – Spelling Rules & Patterns 

Year Three - Six 

Spelling Rules and Patterns using Jane Considine Spelling programme (Phonics where needed)