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Assessing Phonics

We carefully assess children's phonic knowledge and rigorously track their progress in phonics as they move through school. This enables us to identify any gaps in their understanding and take steps to 'close the gap'. To support this, we use Little Wandle Letters and Sounds phonics assessments each half term. 


The assessments are designed to be used every six weeks of the teaching cycle to help us keep track of pupils’ progress, to inform next steps for teaching and to identify pupils for Keep-up. These are one-to-one assessments that give us a clear indication of the progress of each child.


We believe in early identification of children at risk of falling behind, linked to the provision of effective keep-up support. At St. Mary's we have high expectations that drives the pace of learning and success built for all children by identifying those having difficulty very early on. These children are then provided with sufficient additional support to help them keep up.


This involves:

• simple but effective continuous assessment, both informal and more formal

• regular progress reviews for all children

• methods of informal support understood by all teachers and teaching assistants, and implemented as soon as necessary

• systems for formal support clearly established and implemented as soon as necessary

• plans and materials for effective support readily to hand and taught well.