Secondary curriculum information

A tutor helps a secondary school student with work,

Early reading & phonics (SSP)

SSP iceberg

We have put this area together to support Secondary mentors with their knowledge and understanding of Systematic Synthetic Phonics (SSP) and early reading. The Core Content Framework notes that all trainees (regardless of the phase they are training to teach in) should learn that;

‘To access the curriculum, early literacy provides fundamental knowledge; reading comprises two elements: word reading and language comprehension; systematic synthetic phonics is the most effective approach for teaching pupils to decode’ (DfE, 2019, p.13).

Trainees must also learn that they should develop pupils’ literacy by ‘Observing how expert colleagues demonstrate a clear understanding of systematic synthetic phonics, particularly if teaching early reading and spelling, and deconstructing this approach’ (ibid., p.15).

All Secondary trainees have received training on how to support Secondary pupils’ who may be ‘early readers’ including training on the use of Systematic Synthetic Phonics.

The reading framework: Teaching the foundations of literacy (DfE, 2022)

‘Pupils who cannot read well enough do not have full access to the curriculum. Those who fail to learn to read early on often start to dislike reading. They read less than others – and less often – and do not accumulate the background knowledge and vocabulary from reading that their peers do. The word-rich get richer, while the word-poor get poorer’ (DfE, 2022, p.67)

The reading framework sets out the core principles of teaching reading for children both in the early years and also for those who may not have mastered the foundations, such as those who enter Secondary education without the basics in place to access their curriculum. The guidance aims to create a school environment where every child learns to read and learns to love reading.