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Buckland Road,
Chessington, Surrey,
KT9 1JE 0208 397 2006 admin@castlehill.rbksch.org

Castle Hill Primary

Castle Hill Primary

Reading and Phonics

Reading is such an important life skill and it is at the heart of everything we do at Castle Hill. Through our rigorous phonics curriculum, we ensure children develop the skills and knowledge they need to develop as confident readers who have a love of books. We want students to enjoy reading so that it promotes an interest in other subjects of the curriculum. Children should leave school as lifelong readers, writers and learners.  We believe that our children should not only reach their best academically, but also develop a thirst for knowledge, foster a love of learning and leave our school with exceptional independent learning skills and we believe that reading is at the heart of this.

We take a structured approach to the teaching of reading and pupils are taught phonics daily through the Read Write Inc Scheme.

What is the Read Write Inc Scheme?

Read Write Inc (RWI) is a phonics programme which helps all children learn to read fluently and at speed so they can focus on developing their skills in comprehension, vocabulary and spelling. The programme is designed for children aged 4-7. However, at Castle Hill we begin the programme in nursery in the Summer term and will continue with teaching RWI to children beyond the age of 7 if they still need support in their reading. RWI was developed by Ruth Miskin and more information on this can be found below:

Parent guide to Read Write Inc. Phonics | Oxford Owl

Click here to see how RWI is taught at Castle Hill

Fast Track Tutoring

Targeted supported is provided for pupils who need extra support through the Ruth Miskins Fast Track Tutoring programme. It breaks down the RWI phonics into small, incremental teaching steps to ensure progress is accelerated and that pupils catch up quickly. 

Fresh Start

Fresh Start is a structured literacy programme, rooted in phonics, for pupils in year 5 and 6 who are reading below age- related expectations or who are new to English. Through the programme pupils are taught to understand the English alphabetic code, read and spell words containing the sounds they know and high frequency words. They also read engaging, age- appropriate modules closely matched to their increasing phonic knowledge. 

Phonics Screening Test

The phonics screening check is taken individually by all children in Year 1 and some children in Year 2 in England, and is usually taken in June. It is designed to give teachers and parents information on how your child is progressing in phonics. It will help to identify whether your child needs additional support at this stage so that they do not fall behind in this vital early reading skill. 

Click here for more information on the phonics screening test at Castle Hill

Reading Books

As pupils move through the RWI programme, they will be reading materials that are closely matched to their phonic knowledge in the lessons at school and at home. During the RWI lessons, pupils will read 'story ditty books' at least three times with a partner, aiming to build their fluency/speed and comprehension and confidence. Pupils will take home the book and they should be able to feel confident about reading it to an adult. Along side this book, pupils will take home a 'book bag book' that has guidance inside for parents and are matched to the books pupils read in school, so providing practise of the same sounds and extra practise at the right level. 

List of books

Useful Websites

Ruth Miskin Parents Page:


Ruth Miskin Facebook:


Free e-books for home reading: