Home Page

St Mary’s Roman Catholic Primary School

Wisdom & Faith

Literacy and Phonics

Phonics involves learning the names of letters and their sounds – this is a vital process for the children to master as it is essential to help with reading, writing and spelling.

What is phonics?

Phonics is a method for teaching reading and writing to children in primary schools. Children link sounds (phonemes) and their written form (graphemes) in order to recognise and read words, using basic units of knowledge to “decode” new or unfamiliar words.


Why is phonics the favoured teaching method?

According to the Department for Education's guidance for parents, "Research shows that when phonics is taught in a structured way – starting with the easiest sounds and progressing through to the most complex – it is the most effective way of teaching young children to read. It is particularly helpful for children aged 5 to 7."


How is phonics taught?

Words are made up of just 44 sounds in English. You may have heard your child or their teacher use particular words that form the core of understanding phonics. Here's a quick explanation of some of the key concepts. 

Below are the letters of the alphabet and rhymes to help your child learn how to write each letter.

Practise saying and writing these with your child.

We use them in school.

Parent video: How to say the sounds

Enjoy the videos and music you love, upload original content, and share it all with friends, family, and the world on YouTube.

RWI Pure Sounds

I created this video with the YouTube Video Editor (

Learning to read words!

As children learn to read, children are taught individual sounds and then how to link them together to form words.

By the end of Reception your child will be able to blend sounds together.


CVC word is a word that is made up of a consonant, vowel and consonant sound. Cat, hot, tip, man and hut are all CVC words.



 To blend sounds. This means looking at a short word, such as 'tin' and saying the three sounds after each other: 't', 'i', 'n', link the sounds together and say the whole word in one go

This is a big step for many children and can take time.

  • Children will usually focus on blending CVCwords (consonant, vowel, consonant) words for some time. Examples of these are: mat, rip, cot, tip, sit, cut, ham, cat, dog, sat...


Tip: Focus on phonological awareness first.

  1. Recognize the alphabet letters.
  2. Remember to read the sounds left-to-right.
  3. Recall and say the sounds slowly and then quickly to try and hear the word.
  4. Blend the sounds together and read the complete word.



Parent video: Sound blending

Enjoy the videos and music you love, upload original content, and share it all with friends, family, and the world on YouTube.