Articles on: Literacy

In Stage 1, should we place less emphasis on groups of words with initial and final blends?

Over recent years PLD has aimed as much as possible to be aligned with SSP - structured synthetic phonics, because it is linked to the most current evidence base and is aligned to produce superior results.

SSP is linked to phonemes or individual sounds. The blends (eg st, cr, bl, mp, nt etc) do not exist in SSP but rather are linked to traditional phonics. In traditional phonics students complete repeated practice with st, then br/fr/sl/sm etc. According to SSP we should present students with mixed blends lists starting first with CCVC and then CVCC words.

The other thing to factor in is that in the PLD process for Year 1, Stage 1 Target 2 and 4 are the most complex to teach and learn. For many students CCVC and CVCC should take less time to acquire.

Sometimes, as you will see in the 2020 Whole School Literacy Plan under Year 1/2, teachers in Year 1 can provide some lists focused upon CCVC and then CVCC before integrating with Targets 2 or 4 in a combination list.

Sometimes teachers can spend too much time focused upon CCVC and CVCC words. If CVC (Target 1) is strong getting through Target 3 should occur at a relatively efficient pace.

Updated on: 15/01/2020

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