Spelling and Phonics

Spelling and word knowledge are key components in the process of learning to read and write.



In EYFS and KS1, we use the Read Write Inc. phonics programme designed by Ruth Miskin. At the core of the programme is the lively and vigorous teaching of synthetic phonics where children learn the 44 common sounds in the English language and how to sound-blend words for reading (decoding), as well as at the same time developing spelling (encoding) and handwriting. In every phonics session, children have the opportunity to write words as well as read words. Year 2 work on a combination of phonics and spelling rules. 


Spelling Objectives

In years 2 - 6, we use Spelling Shed as an organised, progressive scheme to teach the spelling objectives outlined in the English National Curriculum.


Each week, pupils:

  • activate prior knowledge
  • learn new spelling patterns 
  • explore sets of words and their definitions
  • practise spelling words using multisensory strategies
  • practise spelling words through set assignments, playing online games in school and at home
  • apply new spelling words 
  • are assessed through a weekly quiz


In English, teachers reinforce spelling learning when modelling writing. Some spelling patterns are practised as part of our Read to Write units, where appropriate, giving children further opportunity to apply their spellings. Recent spellings are used as part of handwriting practice.


Teachers analyse spelling errors to provide further support and intervention where needed.


Spelling Shed Assignments


Teachers set an online assignment on Spelling Shed each week for children to do in school and at home. The game aspect of Spelling Shed ensures children are engaged and eager to practise their spellings regularly. The low-stakes games, quizzes and reward systems ensure that children find spelling fun.


With built-in scaffolding and support, the games allow pupils to practise their spellings at a level that they are comfortable with. In the main game, children start by seeing and hearing the word before selecting the letters they need from a given selection. As the difficulty increases, the support lessens and children spell the words using a keyboard.


As children play, Spelling Shed tracks a number of aspects. For each pupil or group, reporting shows the frequency of their practice, as well as their progression and attainment for each word list and assignment.The system tracks all words spelled by each child and gives a snapshot of all words spelled over the past week, which allows for targeted intervention through individualised list creation.




Research shows that spelling is a thinking skill. We teach our pupils metacognitive strategies so children are aware of a range of strategies they can use to learn new spellings, have a go at spelling words at the point of writing, and for checking spellings when proofreading. 


Strategies at the point of writing:

Using a GPC (grapheme/phoneme correspondence) chart

Using the environment

Have a go sheet – which spelling choice looks right?

Wiggly under line – check at the end of lesson

Strategies for learning words:

Spelling journals & multi-sensory activities


Say the word how it's spelled

Highlighting the tricky part in common exception words

Look, say, cover, write, check


Using word banks

Dictionary skills

Focus on weekly/recent spelling objective

Peer tutoring 

  Create own personalised word lists




Contact the School

J H Godwin Primary School

Melbourne Road
Headteacher: Mrs L Cartledge

Main Contact: If you would like to contact someone at school for help with anything please ring and speak to Mrs S Jefferson or Mrs K Bickerton in the office

Tel: 01244 259 666

SEN Contact: Mrs E Cornish SENDCO - via admin@jhgodwin.cheshire.sch.uk

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