Fun, Effective Training
At a recent training event in London, led by the effervescent Jaz Ampaw-Farr of Which Phonics?, we had the opportunity to meet teachers from reception to year 3, all keen to learn more about Jolly Phonics, and how it progresses through the school with spelling, grammar and punctuation.
The teachers had been drawn to the two-day course in part to learn more about the correct way to teach synthetic phonics and in part to learn about how to teach grammar in line with the new national curriculum.
Jaz’s enthusiasm meant that the two days sped by and a lot of ground was covered.
Peter Sutton, Year 3 teacher at The Brent School in Dartford said: “The trainer had a broad knowledge and was excellent, but the best part was her enthusiasm – which really made me believe I could teach it!”
The teaching of synthetic phonics isn’t covered in great detail at teacher training college, and so it is a topic that many feel unfamiliar and nervous about.
Peter said: “As someone who had not previously been taught much about phonics, and especially as someone who hadn’t taught it in class. I have now started using the phonics screening check to see what the children do and don’t know. I am also making sure I discuss the reasons why sounds go in places in the word (so ‘ay’ is at the end and ‘ai’ in the middle for example).”
Jaz shared her own thoughts on the topic of synthetic phonics and approached the seminar from an independent standpoint, but she did say that Jolly Phonics was, in her opinion, the best programme out there.
Peter Sutton said: “The training has made me think about better ways to explain phonically how to spell words, especially to my lower ability children, as well as why words are spelt in certain ways to the more able. I am of the belief that this will work.”
As a teacher in Year 3 Peter’s challenges differ from his colleague who was in attendance to learn more about reception aged phonics teaching. He added: “I know she is using a lot of the ideas with stories to engage the children as they begin the very first steps into reading and writing. Also, as a school I know we are bringing in a lot of the Jolly Phonics materials, so I look forward to being able to tell you more in the coming months…”
To find out more about Jolly Phonics, why not attend our upcoming FREE head teachers’ information day in London. Click here for more details.