St. Patrick's Catholic Primary School

Making learning irresistible


Phonics is taught in six phases. 

Phase 1

Phase one is taught in Reception developing children’s speaking and listening skills laying the foundation for future phonic work in the other 5 phases. 


Phase 2

Letters and their sounds are introduced one at a time. Children normally learn these in Reception class. A set of letters is taught each week, in the following sequence. 

Set 1- s  a  t  p

Set 2- i  n  m  d

Set 3- g  o  c  k

Set 4- ck  e  u  r

Set 5- h  b  f,ff   l,ll  ss


As soon as each set of letters is introduced, children will be encouraged to use their knowledge of the letter sounds (phonemes) to blend and sound out words. For example c-a-t to make the word cat. They will also start to learn how to segment words. For example listening for the sounds in pig... p-i-g. 


Phase 3

 Children will already be able to blend and segment words containing the 19 letters taught in Phase 2. They will move on to learn Phase 3 sounds. 

Set 6- j  v  w  x

Set 7- y  z  qu

Constant digraphs- sh  ch  th  ng

Vowel digraphs-

ai  ee  igh  oa

oo  ar  or

ur  ow  oi

ear  air  ure  er


Phase 4

Children entering Phase 4 will be able to represent all 42 phonemes with a letter, be able to blend to read and segment CVC words. They will have some experience of reading two-syllable words and captions. Phase 4 will help children consolidate their knowledge of graphemes in reading and spelling words containing adjacent consonants and polysyllabic words. 


Phase 5 

Children entering Phase 5 will already be able to read and spell words such as trap and milk. They will also be able to read and spell words with more than one syllable. They will then be taught alternative graphemes and split diagraphs. 

Alternative Pronunciation of Graphemes       ay ou ie ea
oy ir ue aw
wh ph ew oe
au ey
Split Digraphs a-e e-e i-e o-e

Phase 6

Phonics Screening Check

The phonics screening check is taken individually by all children in Year 1 in England. There are two sections in this 40 word check and it assesses phonics skills and knowledge learnt through Reception and Year 1.  Your child will read up to four words per page to their teacher which will take about 10 minutes. 

It checks that your child can; 

  • Sound out and blend graphemes in order to read simple words.
  • Read phonically decodable one-syllable and two-syllable words. E.g cat, sand, windmill
  • Read a selection of nonsense words which are referred to as pseudo words.