Essential Letters and Sounds – Information for Parents

Harder to read and spell words (HRS)

HRS words are currently harder to read and spell as children have not yet been taught the relevant GPCs (Grapheme Phoneme Correspondences). HRS words are common in the English language, and it is important that children can read and spell them. When teaching a new HRS, we always identify the graphemes (letters which represent the sound) within the word that make it tricky e.g they (ey is tricky). Please see the Reception and Year 1 documents which outline the order and term in which these words will be taught at Merry Hill.

Reading with your child

Reading books are changed every Friday. This allows your child to re-read each text several times, building their confidence and fluency. This is especially important as they begin to learn that the sounds within our language can be spelled in different ways.

For children, re-reading words and sentences that they can decode (sound out) until they are fluent (read with ease and precision) is a key part of learning to read. By reading texts several times, children have the greatest opportunity to achieve this fluency.

The texts sent home are carefully matched to the teaching taking place in school. Your child will be practising what they have been taught in school with you at home. We will only ask children to read books independently when they can decode these by themselves.

Mr Reid has worked with Nathaniel to model how to read a text four times with a different focus for each read (decoding, fluency, comprehension and expression).

https://youtu.be/If1kXlV9FaY

Any books that are not yet decodable for the children will be sent home as a sharing book. These books will be sent home for you to read with your child, helping us to instil a love of reading from the very beginning of their reading journey. These could be read together with your child reading the words they are able to decode or could be read to your child.

How to pronounce sounds

Reception – Phase 2

During the Autumn term, our Reception children learn phase 2 sounds. They focus on oral blending as well as sounding out and blending the 23 new grapheme-phoneme correspondences (GPCs). They will also learn 12 new harder to read and spell words (HRS). Please see the HRS section for a list of words the children will learn and when.

These Phase 2 sounds will continue to be used throughout the children’s time at Merry Hill. We ensure that we model pure sounds so that the children are able to blend successfully. Please see the video below so you can hear how to pronounce the “pure sounds”. Parent feedback has requested further support with sound articulation so we have included these links on our website for you.  A consistent approach optimises success for the children so please let us know if you require further support with how to help your child with their phonics.

Phase 2 video

https://vimeo.com/641445921/9382cf6db0

Reception – Phase 3

During the second half of the Autumn term and throughout the Spring Term, Reception children learn phase 3 sounds. They continue to focus on oral blending as well as sounding out and blending the 29 new grapheme-phoneme correspondences (GPCs). They will also learn 32 new harder to read and spell words (HRS). Please see the HRS section for a list of words the children will learn and when.

These Phase 3 sounds will continue to be used throughout the children’s time at Merry Hill. We ensure that we model pure sounds so that the children are able to blend successfully. Please see the video below so you can hear how to pronounce the “pure sounds”. Parent feedback has requested further support with sound articulation so we have included these links on our website for you.  A consistent approach optimises success for the children so please let us know if you require further support with how to help your child with their phonics.

Phase 3 video

https://vimeo.com/642342878/59d233684c