We are a Read Write Inc School!

Here at St. Joseph’s we use the Read Write Inc. (RWI) programme to get children off to a flying start with their reading and writing. RWI is a rigorous and structured programme which integrates phonics, comprehension, writing, grammar, punctuation, vocabulary and handwriting. We follow this programme with absolute fidelity to ensure that our children get out of the reading gateway as quickly as possible. The programme is now securely embedded in school, and it has helped us to create a consistent approach across our school as we all work together to ensure our children are confident readers.

RWI is a carefully structured systematic, synthetic, phonics programme designed for pupils in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2. The alphabetic code is taught in a certain order to ensure that children learn to read and write grapheme/phoneme correspondences accurately and fluently. Children learn to read and write sounds in this order:

  • Set 1 Speed Sounds: these are sounds written with one letter:

m a s d t i n p g o c k u b f e l h r j v y w z x and sounds written with two letters (your child will call these ‘special friends’): sh th ch qu ng nk ck

-Words containing these sounds, by sound-blending,

e.g. m–a–t mat, c–a–t cat, g–o–t got, f–i–sh fish, s–p–o–t spot, b–e–s–t best, s–p–l–a–sh splash

-Blending Books and Red, Green and Purple Storybooks.

Second, he or she will learn to read:

  • Set 2 Speed Sounds: ay ee igh ow oo oo ar or air ir ou oy

-Words containing these sounds

-Pink, Orange and Yellow Storybooks.

Third, he or she will learn to read:

  • Set 3 Speed Sounds: ea oi a-e i-e o-e u-e aw are ur er ow ai oa ew ire ear ure

-Words containing these sounds

-Blue and Grey Storybooks.


Once children become speedy at reading the first five sounds taught in Reception, they begin their journey to becoming independent blenders when reading words. We teach them how to use their reading routine (‘Special Friends, Fred Talk, Read the Word’) to read words accurately, build their fluency and become speedy word readers at each stage of the programme. Children then read matched texts, which only contain the sounds that they can read accurately. This means that your child will love bringing home their reading book and showing you what they have been learning in school. We ask that you support them in building their fluency at home by re-reading texts each day to develop their fluency, expression and their understanding of what they are reading.

Children in Reception have a daily phonics lesson for around 20 minutes in the first half term. They work really hard to learn the first 25 sounds and begin to practice blending sounds to make words. Once they can read words, they will begin to bring home their reading books to practise their reading routine. As the year progresses phonics lessons increase to 45 minutes by the end of their first year. In each lesson, children will learn/review a sound, read sounds speedily, read real and nonsense words, spell with Fred Fingers, complete reading activities linked to their matched storybook and hold and edit a sentence in order to secure their growing understanding of the alphabetic code.


Parent Booklet RWI

Further information provided by RWI can be found here: