Towcester Church of England Primary School

Enjoy, Believe, Achieve, Succeed

Islington Road, Towcester, Northamptonshire, NN12 6AU

01327 350332



Pupils in Foundation Stage, Year 1 and Year 2 are taught phonics through the use of the 'Letters and Sounds' framework published by the DfE. This teaches the children through progressive phases to help them become confident and able readers and writers.

Teachers and Teaching Assistants use a range of teaching devices such as reading, writing, games, partners work, singing and Interactive Board work to teach and consolidate the children's understanding of sounds. All children are grouped according to ability for this focussed work.

Many of our reading books are now linked with the new National Curriculum and Letters and Sounds progression steps.


Phonics Testing in Year 1 and Year 2

Pupils in Year 1 have a phonics screening check. This is a government assessment to confirm whether individual children are able to decode words using their knowledge of sounds. It will take place in week beginning 16th June.

Year 2 pupils who did not achieve the pass mark last year will be given the test again.

The test involves the children reading a set of words to their teacher. Some of the words are real words and some are non-words. The reason for this is to assess whether the child can use their sounds to decode. The non-words are accompanied by a picture of an alien to give the children a context that it is not a word they would necessarily recognise.

We expose the children to real and non-words on a regular basis to give them practise in applying their skills. 


If you would like further information or guidance of how you can help your child at home, please follow the links below:


Department of Education


This link has more information about the test including a video clip of Year 1 children reading similar words to that in the test and how they use their sounds correctly and incorrectly.


Sample test


This is a sample test that can show you and your child what the test will look like.


Phonics Games


This website offers free games for the children to practise their understanding of phonics. 'Buried Treasure' and 'Picnic on Pluto' are particularly useful at helping the children practise reading words and non-words.