St Barnabas

St Barnabas' CE Primary School and Nursery

Serve with Hope and Encouragement to Learn and Love
"Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you."

Phonics, SPaG and Guided Reading


We place great emphasis on early reading to ensure all pupils acquire a secure knowledge of phonics and are able to apply this to their reading and writing across the curriculum.

This year, we are taking part in a pilot for a new systematic, synthetic phonics programme: GES Simply Letters and Sounds. This is taught from Reception to Year 2, as well as to any pupils in KS2 who need further support. Pupils in Nursery are taught Phase One from the Letters and Sounds programme.

We have further updated our provision of reading books to ensure they are directly matched to the phonics taught in class. This means the books are decodable. We put great focus on re-reading books in order to develop automaticity, as we aim for all our pupils to be able to read ‘at a glance’.


Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar (SPaG)

 Why is Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar so important?
  • Punctuation can change the meaning of a sentence greatly!
  • We need to use Standard English to communicate effectively. Using incorrect punctuation, grammar and spelling can change the meaning of sentences whether spoken or written.
  • Children need to use accurate SPAG to progress in life and build careers.


What does the National Curriculum say about SPaG?


Reading is divided into two parts, word reading and comprehension.

SPAG is featured in the comprehension part as it is related to understanding of texts and reading

as a whole.


Writing is divided into two parts, transcription (spelling and handwriting) and composition, (articulating ideas and structuring them in speech and writing).

“Pupils should be taught to use the elements of spelling, grammar, punctuation and ‘language about language’ listed.”

“Throughout the programmes of study, teachers should teach pupils the vocabulary they need to discuss their reading, writing and spoken language. It is important that pupils learn the correct grammatical terms in English and that these terms are integrated within teaching.”


Help for parents with a child's Spelling Journey

Guided Reading

 Every class in KS1 and KS2 has a daily Guided Reading session. Each session is meticulously planned and resourced in order to ensure each child's reading needs and goals are met.
Over the course of the week, each child will have read with an adult at least twice, focused on a word level (Phonics and SPaG) task, and used Bloom's Taxonomy to aid them in a differentiated comprehension and an open-ended activity which covers a range of elements from the Content Domains.
In addition to this, children are encouraged to develop an avid interest in all types of books by borrowing books from the class and school libraries. Regular class visits to the local library also promote a passion for reading.
The main site logo for the BookTrust website
There are some wonderful book lists for children of all ages, just click on the links below.