No Nonsense Phonics is a comprehensive step-by-step method for teaching your children the essential ingredients for reading, spelling and handwriting through systemic and incidental phonics provision. The author Debbie Hepplewhite has created a carefully designed programme that guides your children through the often complex alphabetical code.
The children will work through the 9 books (2 additional books 2+ and 5+ have been created to ensure some codes are taught earlier) across Reception, year 1 and year 2 as each book provides the children with phonic instruction, exercises with cumulative code, words and quality texts. Through these books your children will develop their language comprehension, build a rich vocabulary and develop spelling banks on which to apply across the writing they produce. The books provide the children with bright colours, imagery and help evoke imagination of which they get opportunities to discuss. Children become fully engaged and involved with the whole process of regular formative assessment on a daily basis.
Throughout Early years and Key stage One phonics is taught in a systematic way following the No Nonsense Phonics validated programme. We begin the programme as soon as the children start their educational journey in Reception with the aim that all children will be readers by age Seven. The dedicated phonics programme works alongside the decodable books which allow pupils to apply and practise their phonic knowledge.
In Reception the children will receive their phonics lesson daily beginning with book 1 on the programme. The children will learn at least 2 new sounds and how the code is written each week. Alongside this the children will be introduced to tricky words and high-frequency words for them to begin to read and recognise.
In year 1 and 2 the children continue the programme on a daily basis (5 lessons per week). The children are introduced to at least 2 new codes, the sounds they make and how they are written per week. The children are given the opportunity to apply their new knowledge and demonstrate their understanding through daily reactivations of previous codes and sounds.
The No Nonsense lesson is split into 2 parts - 'the multi-skills' and 'the mini-story'. Below is a break down of how each lesson is completed.
Day 1 - Multi-skills Lesson
(a) Flashcards of previous learned sounds.
(b) Say the Sounds - this is a quick task where children are exposed to many of the previous codes and must quickly say the sounds each one makes independently (support for those children who need it)
(c) Reactivation of a previous code
(d) Introduction of the new code and the sound it makes - children have opportunity to practise saying it and also the opportunity to practise writing it.
(e) Children have opportunity to apply this new sound to new words after modelling from teacher.
(f) Children complete a quick puzzle applying their new sound.
(g) Children then independently decode a mixture of previous graphemes and new words that contain the focus code (this contains both independent and supported practice)
(h) The final element is some independent spelling of words with the focus code within it.
Day 2 - Mini-story Lesson
(a) 'Say the Sounds' activity is repeated.
(b) Reactivation of a previous code.
(c) Children then have opportunity to say some recent sounds and self assess how many they remember.
(d) The mini-story is introduced to the children where they have the opportunity to read it independently several times identifying words that have today's code in, identifying unfamiliar words they would like the definition for and having the opportunity to build fluency and accuracy within their reading.
(e) Teacher and children read the story together including modelling on how to read with expression. At this stage the comprehension is tested through a selection of questions.
(f) Children then copy write the story to enhance their handwriting and spelling skills (at this stage children are supported by teacher feedback as they write).
(g) The final stage is the independent spelling of key words containing the focus code/sound.
Carl Pattison, English Hub Senior Lead of The Flying High Trust invites Debbie Hepplewhite to describe the rationale of her phonics programmes: Phonics International ( https://phonicsinternational.com ) No Nonsense Phonics ( https://phonicsintervention.org ) Debbie and Carl discuss some of the differences between Debbie's phonics programmes and other phonics approaches.
Unfortunately not the ones with chocolate chips.
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