Westbourne Primary School



At Westbourne, we begin by teaching children to read using a systematic, synthetic phonics approach (using the Jolly Phonics Scheme). To support our consistent, systematic approach to teaching reading we use Jolly Phonic decodable readers that match the order of sounds taught and the tricky words learnt at each stage in your child’s journey through the complex alphabetic code we use in English. The children initially learn one way of making a sound, then learn alternative ways of making the sounds already learnt, building up this complex code (there are 13 ways of making the ‘ai’ sound in English!) These decodable books have a very carefully controlled vocabulary which makes them ideal for children to apply the skills they have been taught.

Once Jolly Phonics has brought fluency to the children’s reading, comprehension becomes the greater focus. The children are now not learning to read but reading to learn as they become fluent, independent readers – selecting their own reading material from either classroom book corners or from their own/ local library collection.

In order to encourage all children to become lifelong readers, it is important that they learn to read for pleasure. We encourage all children to take home a sharing book as well as their phonic book. This book is chosen by the child to share with an adult at home. They can change this book as often as they like and is a great opportunity for them to explore different types of writing.

Our ultimate aim is for all children to enjoy reading and derive pleasure from engaging with a wide variety of books and texts.



Click here to listen to the sounds:



Click here to see the Jolly Phonics Actions:

There are 5 Key Skills to learning Phonics:

1. Learning the letter sounds:

More information here:


2. Learning the Letter Formation

More information here:


3. Blending

More information here:


4. Identifying Sounds in Words

More information here:


5. Tricky Words:

More information here:

The Complex Alphabetical Code:


Children are taught one way of making the sounds, then alternative ways of making these sounds in Reception and build up the alphabetic code by looking at unusual alternative spellings over the next few years of phonics.       


English Alphabetical Code:

Need help understanding all of the Phonics Terms?

This guide will help you with all of the meanings!


Word Bank:

-Please see the PDF below which contains a word bank providing a list of suitable words that can be made using the sounds learnt – great for practising phonic skills at a level suited to your child’s stage of learning!

Resources for Parents


Are you finding it hard to recognise b and d ? Play these games to help !