This post is written by KS1 specialist teacher Anne.
The global pandemic continues to impact the learning of our children, especially when it comes to phonics. Some children have missed out on phonics lessons with their teachers and the phonics screening check in June 2021 was cancelled. Here at Mrs Mactivity, we want to help you to support your children by providing effective and engaging year 2 phonics screening check resources.
What is happening with the phonics screening check in 2021?
Each year, the phonics screening check is usually administered to Year 1 pupils during the summer term. As the June 2021 phonics screening check was cancelled, current Year 2 pupils are required to take part in the phonics screening check during the second half of the autumn term. Teachers can choose to administer a past version of the phonics check from either 2017, 2018, or 2019. Year 1 pupils will still complete the check in June 2022 as will any Year 2 pupils who do not meet the expected standard during the autumn check.
Why do we have a phonics screening check?
The results of the screening check are submitted to the local authority. The check is designed to assess children’s phonics skills and to help identify those pupils who need extra support in decoding and reading words using phonics.
Do all year 2 pupils need to complete the phonics screening check?
A headteacher may decide that it is not appropriate for some Year 2 pupils to participate in the phonics screening. For example, those children who are working below the expected standard in phonics and have shown no understanding of grapheme-phoneme correspondences; those who have limited fluency in English or have recently moved to the UK and are unable to understand English letters and sounds; those who use British Sign Language (BSL) or other sign-supported communication to spell out individual letters, but are not linking letters and sounds using phonics; or any children who are mute or selectively mute.
What is the expected standard for the year 2 phonics screening check?
In 2017, 2018, and 2019 the threshold mark was 32 out of 40.
What is the structure of the year 2 phonics screening check?
There are 40 words for the child to read. The check is designed to test the child’s knowledge of phonics and their ability to blend to decode each word. Some are pseudo words and are accompanied by an image of an alien. It is intended that the child is made aware that these words are the name of an alien and therefore realises that they do not have to try and make a real word. The remaining words are real words and are not accompanied by any images.The words in section 1 are intended to be easier than section 2 because they have a simpler structure and test phonemes from earlier in the phonics curriculum. There is no time limit for the check, but it usually takes a child between 4 and 10 minutes to complete.
Year 2 phonics screening check resources
We have created a year 2 mock screening check resource pack to allow you to familiarise children with the structure and layout of the check. It has the same number of pseudo and real words as well as a guide to acceptable pronunciations and a scoring sheet. It can be used as a PowerPoint in a whole class, small group or 1:1 activity, or it can be printed and used as a booklet. This mock check allows you to familiarise children with the check and discuss any strategies or difficulties without needing to use the past versions from the DfE. We have also got lots of other resources to help support your daily phonics teaching or fill any gaps in your children’s phonic knowledge. We also have a phonics screening check bingo game, and phonics screening check buried treasure game.