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‘Apply your heart to instruction and your ear to words of knowledge.’


Proverbs 23:12

Early Reading at Pollington-Balne CE Primary


At Pollington-Balne we teach our children early reading through a consistent and systematic phonics programme -  Read, Write, Inc (RWI). RWI is a fast-paced, rigorous and structured phonics programme developed by Ruth Miskin. The RWI programme is fully matched to the aims of new National Curriculum Programme of Study and RWI is designed to help get every child reading fast.


Why are we teaching RWI at Pollington-Balne?


RWI phonics teaches children to read accurately and fluently with good comprehension. They also learn to form each letter, and spell with more accuracy as they apply phonic knowledge.


What does RWI look like at Pollington-Balne?


At Pollington-Balne we have tailored the RWI programme to meet the needs our children and school environment. Our RWI programme consists of 45 minute daily phonic sessions each morning taught by RWI trained teachers and TA’s. Children are currently taught in small groups who have been grouped according to ability in light of phonic assessments. 


What do children read in RWI sessions?


In a RWI session children will read decodable storybooks that are closely matched to their increased phonic ability. Storybooks are colour coded to reflect progression through the programme. Storybooks are therefore determined by how the children perform in their termly phonic assessments. RWI storybooks include texts in a range of engaging genres such as fairy tales, myths and legends, rhyming stories and familiar settings. There's also a small selection NON-Fiction books  available to ensure breadth across text types and genres. 


How are children assessed?


In September children are assessed using a basline phonics assessment, the children are then placed into small groups according to their phonic ability. We currently have 5 groups of children with the largest group consisting of 15 children. The children are then taught following the RWI programme and are assessed at the end of every term. Termly assessments allow teachers to measure progress and identify 'spotlight children' - those who may require further intervention and support. Allowing us to support the children in keeping up with their peers. 


Find out more about our approaches to teaching and learning below.


Oxford Owl provides a wealth of resources to support parents with RWI, including phonics resources to help your child, ebooks, practice sheets and helpful parent films mentioned in our Spring 24’ parent meeting. 

Below are some useful resources and links for supporting your child at home.


How and what do the children learn?




The children:

 learn 44 sounds and the corresponding letters/letter groups using simple picture prompts

 learn to read words using sound blending

 read lively stories featuring words they have learned to sound out




The children:

 learn to write the letters/letter groups which represent the 44 sounds

 learn to write words by saying the sounds and graphemes

 learn to build sentences orally using adventurous vocabulary

 start with simple sentences and develop towards more complex ones by the end of the programme





Children are assessed so they work with children at the same level. This allows them to take a full part in all lessons.

They work in pairs so that they:

 answer every question

 practise every activity with their partner

 take turns in talking to each other.


A parents guide: leaflets for reading at home

Welcome to Pollington - Balne CE VA Primary School, where we believe,' to encounter Jesus is to be invited into ‘life in all its fullness’ (John 10:10): each person is utterly precious.”