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Monkshouse Primary Academy

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Sounds-Write Phonics - A guide for parents

This page is a designed to give guidance to our parents/carers about the programme we use at Monkshouse Primary School to teach phonics. 


Sounds-Write is the systematic programme we use at Monkshouse Primary School to teach our children how to read and write. It is a muti-sensory phonics programme used from Reception to Year 2. In KS2, children follow the Sounds-Write programme for spelling.

This section is an informative support guide for parents.


Sounds-Write teaches the knowledge that:

  • Letters are symbols that represent sounds.                                                                                                                                  The code
  • A sound may be spelled by 1,2,3 or 4 letters.

e.g. dog   feet   right   dough  

  • A sound can be spelled in more than one way.

e.g. the /ae/ sound:   pain    steak    cake    play

  • A spelling can make more than one sound.

e.g.   spelling ‘ea’:     bread  (the /e/ sound)     stream   (the /ee/ sound)


Sounds-Write teaches the skills of:

  • Blending – putting sounds together to make a word
  • Segmenting – breaking a word into sounds for spelling
  • Phoneme manipulation – the ability to swap sounds within words


Parents are encouraged to complete the, free, Udemy training which will guide them in how to support their child with the Initial Code and acquiring all the skills and knowledge for reading.

The links to this are:    for Initial Code Units 1-7

and   for Initial Code Units 8-11

Alphabet Arc

Children in EYFS will be familiar with the visual of an alphabet arc, this will support their awareness of the alphabetic code. During phonics lessons, the children are taught the sound for each letter and these are used within an alphabet arc to spell new words. 


Word reading is important and from Unit 3 onwards of the Initial Code, children will bring home flashcards of high frequency words to learn. High frequency words often have more complex spelling patterns, however because they are frequently used in texts it is important that children become familiar with them sooner than when that spelling pattern is to be taught. This method will enable children to become fluent readers more quickly and will support their independent reading and fluency development.

Single grapheme flashcards will be sent home for children to practise once they have been taught in school. Parents are encouraged to practise these daily with their child to ensure they are confident in recognising and naming the sound.


The Extended Code progresses through Units from 1 to 50, covering phonics teaching in Year 1 and in Year 2. In the majority of the Units, children are introduced to a sound and then learn the most common spelling patterns that make that sound. In Year 2 those sounds are revisited and more phonemes are taught (text in green are the ‘more spellings’ for a sound, these are taught in Year 2.


/ae/                 /ee/                 /igh/

ai                     e                        igh

a-e                   ea                      y

ay                    ee                      ie

ea                    y                         i-e

ey                    ey                       

ei                     ie

eigh                i



As children become more familiar with vocabulary and spelling through their fluency in reading, their ability to select the correct spelling pattern in their writing will rapidly increase.

Children in KS1 will continue to learn high frequency words through rapid recall. These will be sent home as flashcards to support fluency development.