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Phonics and supporting your child with Reading at Home

Read Write Inc Phonics


At Aldwyn Primary School we teach phonics using Read, Write Inc, a synthetic phonics programme, which starts in Foundation and continues into Year 1 and Year 2. 


The children learn 44 common sounds in the English Language and how to sound out and blend these sounds for reading (decoding). We call this Fred Talk. They also develop their letter formation, spelling skills (encoding) and knowledge of 'tricky' words. Tricky words are words you cannot sound out such as: said, all, and is. We call these tricky words Red Words.


Read Write Inc lessons happen daily for all children requiring phonics. Foundation, Year 1 and Year 2 follow the Read Write Inc programme including children in KS2. Phonic lessons are taught by a combination of whole class teaching, ability groups and one to one teaching. Children work with a trained Teacher or Teaching Assistant. 


Children are assessed and grouped each half term and this ensures the children progress in their phonics and learning is tracked with the gaps identified. This also ensures their reading books match their phonic ability. 


What is Read, Write Inc Phonics?


Read Write Inc phonics is a way of teaching children to read quickly and skilfully. They are taught how to:

  • recognise the sounds that each individual letter makes;
  • also identify the sounds that different combinations of letters make -such as 'sh' or 'oo'  (we call these particular sounds Special Friends)
  • then blend these sounds together from left to right to read a word (Fred Talk).

Children can then use this knowledge to 'de-code' new words that they hear and see. This is the first important step in learning to read. 



                       Set 1 sounds         Set 2 sounds          Set 3 sounds



Learn how we say the Set 1, Set 2 and Set 3 Read, Write Inc Phonic Sounds we learn in school. 


Fred the Frog and Fred Talk.  


Fred is a frog puppet who says, reads and spells words in their pure form; he doesn't know how to blend the sounds and read the word - the children do this for him. He can only say the sounds in words. He always says the sounds correctly. Watch the video above for how to pronounce the Set One, Set Two and Set Three sounds correctly. Fred never puts 'uh' on the end of sounds (only when saying the sounds b, g, d, j, w and y).

Children can 'Fred Talk' words by sounding and blending to read e.g. m-a-t.  Children are taught to spell by hearing and saying sounds in a word before writing them down.  We call this using your 'Fred fingers' to help you spell e.g. when we spell b-a-th.  This sound has three sounds so we put three fingers up and we say each sound as we touch each finger one at a time and say b-a-th. We then spell the word.

Questions to ask your child when reading a phonic home reading book.


Remember to focus on the words in the book and not the pictures.

Can you Fred Talk the word?

Can you use your Fred Talk to help you read the word?

Can you spot any red words, tricky words? Which words do you just know? Can you spot them before we read?

Can you spot the Special Friend? Then say 'Fred Talk'. 

Encourage children to Fred Talk out loud and give them lots of praise and encouragement along the way: 'Great Fred Talk!'

As your child becomes more confident at using Fred Talk try asking them to do 'Fred in their head' and just say the word out loud,

'Can you do Fred in your head?'

This will help them to get off to a good start with reading and to develop into fluent readers with a good pace. 


We encourage the children to read their reading books two to three times before changing them as this will really help your child develop their decoding and blending skills.


In addition, please also remember to read bedtime stories to your child each night as this will help them to read, develop their language and vocabulary skills and develop a love of reading and reading for pleasure. Droylsden Library also has a vast selection of children's reading books and it is free to enrol your child so that they can take books home. 



How to read Reading Books at home with the Set 1 Sounds

How to read Reading books at home with the Set 2 and Set 3 Sounds

Support for reading with your child at home

What does the Year One Phonic Check consist of?

Parent Videos 


The Oxford Owl site has some great tutorial videos to help you understand how Read Write Inc works and how you can support your child at home. For more information and tutorials for how you can support your child learning to read go to:


Oxford Owl also has ebooks for the children and is free for parents. You just need to go to the website and create a log in and password for yourself. Here is the link:



Read Write Inc Speed Sounds Charts for you to use at home: