The Read Write Inc. Phonics Programme 

At Chestnuts, we use Read Write Inc. as our inclusive, synthetic phonics programme to teach the children to read, write and spell. Your child’s reading journey will begin from the moment they start school in Reception where they will have daily phonics lessons exploring individual sounds and learning to read these within words with their bouncy puppet friend ‘Fred the Frog’Fred is a small frog who participates in your child’s lessons, modelling to the children how to pronounce and blend sounds together!  

The following video is an example of Fred Talk and blending with Fred. 


The daily sessions continue throughout Key Stage 1 where the children learn the 44 common sounds in the English language and are taught how to recognise, decode and segment these within words. We begin by teaching the Set 1 sounds; the children then progress to reading stories and texts that contain words made up of sounds they know. Each sound is accompanied by a short handwriting rhyme that supports the children in forming and writing their letters. Once secure, children move onto learn Set 2 and 3 sounds and encounter increasingly more complex stories and non-fiction texts. They focus on comprehension skills and reading for enjoyment. Within all Read Write Inc. lessons, children are exposed to both green and red words which they will learn. This helps them to become more confident, independent readers.  

Red words are words that are not easily decodable and do not conform to the spelling rules. Read Write Inc. supports children in learning to both read and spell these words. Green words are words linked to the sounds that are being taught and those previously covered. 

Dots and dashes represent the sounds (or phonemes) within the words: 

Dot – single letter which represents a unit of sound. 

Dash – where two or more letters combined form a unit of sound. 

Nonsense / Alien Words: 

As well as learning to read and blend real words, the children have opportunities to apply their sound recognition skills by reading ‘nonsense’ or fictional words. These will feature in the Year 1 National Phonics Screening Check in the summer term.  


During a Read Write Inc. session, the children are supported to develop their spelling skills. This will begin in Reception when the children are forming letters and beginning to write and continue throughout their Read Write Inc. journey. They will have the support of Fred who will model the process of how to spell, segmenting words and being able to blend them back together.  


The Read Write Inc. scheme progresses through nine different levels and the expectation is that all children will leave Year One as confident speedy readers, ready to take on the challenges of Year Two.  

Books  Year Group Expectations 
Pre-Ditty Sheets and Red Ditty 1-10     Reception 
Green 1-10  Reception 
Purple 1-10  Reception/Year One 
Pink 1-10  Year One 
Orange 1-12  Year One 
Yellow 1-10  Year One 
Blue 1-10  Year One 
Grey 1-13  Year One and Year Two 


Read Write Inc. Book Bag Books: 

Each week, children will bring home a RWI Book Bag book which is linked to the level and sounds they have been learning at school. This book is an opportunity for them to apply and consolidate what they have learnt at school and develop their reading fluencyaccuracy and confidence. This is also an opportunity for them to spend quality time, at home, sharing their learning journey. In Reception, these may initially be small slimline blending books before your child progresses onto story books.  

Phonics Screening Check  

The national Phonics Screening Check was introduced in 2012 to all Year 1 pupils. It is a short, statutory assessment to ensure that children are making sufficient progress in the phonics skills of read words and are on track to become fluent readers who can enjoy reading for pleasure and for learning. 

How can I help at home? 

  • Help your child to sound out the letters in words and then to ‘push’ the sounds together to make a whole word. Try not to refer to the letters by their names. Help your child to focus on the sounds. You can hear how to say the sounds correctly at this link: 
  • If your child brings home a book they seem familiar with, encourage your child to tell you the story out loud; ask them questions about things that happen or what they think about some of the characters in the story. 
  • We know parents and carers are very busy people. However, if you can find time to read to your child as much as possible, it helps them to learn about books and stories. They also learn new wordswhat they mean and the rhythm of storytelling. Showing that you are interested in reading yourself and talking about reading as a family can support your child to develop a love of reading 


Useful websites and games:  

The websites below contain various games that can be played at home. The following phases are matched to your child’s year group: 

Reception: Phase 1 

Year 1: Phase 2-5 - This website also has resources that can be printed at home.