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Phonics & Reading


Phonics curriculum

At Loughton Manor we use a Phonics scheme called Monster Phonics. It's used as the main tool to enable our children to learn to read and write. Monster Phonics has been validated by the Department for Education (DfE). 

To discover more about how the scheme works, please follow this link to the Monster Phonics Parent Letter.

It’s important that we take an approach that is rigorous, systematic, used with fidelity (any resources used match the Grapheme Phoneme Correspondence (GPC) progression of the approach), and achieves strong results for all pupils.

Validation status indicates that a programme has been self-assessed by its publisher and judged by a panel with relevant expertise and that both consider it to meet all of the DfE criteria for an effective systematic synthetic phonics programme.

A complete systematic synthetic phonics (SSP) programme is one that provides:

  • all that is essential to teach SSP to children in reception and key stage 1 years of mainstream primary schools

  • sufficient support for children in reception and key stage 1 to become fluent readers

  • a structured route for most children to meet or exceed the expected standard in the year one phonics screening check

  • all national curriculum expectations for word reading through decoding by the end of key stage 1

Our Reading Dog!

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I’m Becky, and this is Bertie – and we love coming into school to hear the children read.

It’s all through a charity, Canine Concern. They connect dog owners with different organisations in the community who love to welcome doggy visitors: schools, care homes, hospitals - anywhere a dog can bring lots of joy, calm and support.


Bertie is a Cavapoo - a cross between a Cavalier King Charles and a Poodle – and he was born in 2020. He is very soft, very friendly and rather small, and he loves being with children, and listening to them read.


What happens?


We visit school each week, and listen to a selection of children reading to us, usually from Years 1 and 2. Sometimes it's in groups, and sometimes it's one to one, depending on what will help them most. Some of the children lack confidence in their reading, and to begin with they’re happiest to show us the pictures and talk about them – but very soon they build up to reading some words to us, and that grows each time we visit. Every child we’ve met has advanced to reading us a full story in one session, by the time they finish coming to see us!


Bertie is very calm and adapts his behaviour to each child. He learns very quickly which ones love to fuss him, and who prefers to sit quietly, and he remembers that each week. 


All of the children love giving Bertie one of his tasty treats at the end of each book – and that’s one of his favourite bits too!


We don’t just read, either - we also join the whole of Year 2 on their annual school trip to Central Library. Bertie loves being out and about on the lead with all the children, and I'm always very proud to accompany him on his mission to help them discover some new books. 


Loughton Manor is such a nurturing environment, and children are supported in their learning and development all day long. We are very happy and privileged to be part of that beautiful tapestry of their education, and their precious time at this wonderful infant school.

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