Using Spelling Shed alongside your phonics scheme

Does your Systematic Synthetic Phonics scheme meet the National Curriculum statutory requirements for KS1? Does it prepare your children for the more complex code they will encounter in their reading and writing in Year 3 and beyond?

The simple answer is that almost all Government Validated Phonics Schemes do not adequately cover the National Curriculum objectives.

We have found that objectives like those listed below are often omitted from phonics schemes. 

  • -tch – This sound is usually spelled as ‘tch’ if it comes straight after a single vowel letter. 
  • The /v/ sound at the end of words. 
  • Adding -s and -es to words.
  • Adding the endings -ing, -ed and -er to verbs where no change is needed to the root word. 
  • The prefix un-.

These objectives need to be covered in order to meet National Curriculum requirements.  Due to this, we advise that a spelling programme be used alongside your phonics programme. Another reason for teaching spelling alongside phonics is that it allows children to draw upon a range of skills to spell words effectively. 

All National Curriculum Objectives are explicitly taught through the Spelling Shed programme. 

We suggest that schools begin using Spelling Shed alongside your chosen phonics scheme in years 1 and 2.  Each Spelling Shed lesson is 30 minutes long but can be completed in two fifteen-minute episodes and could be embedded into daily English lessons.

Phonics Shed Users

We have ensured that all National Curriculum spelling objectives in Spelling Shed come after they have been taught in Phonics Shed. The progression can be found in the planning section of the Spelling Shed Website. 

Non-Phonics Shed Users

Teachers should check their phonics progression and ensure that any objective in Spelling Shed is revisited after it has been taught in phonics.  Revisiting the objective is not simply a recap but should build upon the initial learning in the phonics session. 

Example – Trigraph ‘igh’

Phonics Shed objective – Chapter 4b Set 2 ‘c’/’s’, ‘i’/’igh, ‘u’/’ue’, and ‘e’/’ee’, HFW: I’m.

National Curriculum statutory requirement – Teach the trigraph igh

You can see in the medium-term plan for Year 1 that the trigraph is taught in Spring 1 Week 1 and then revisited in a Spelling session in Summer 2 Week 1.

Download the spiral medium-term plan for Spelling Shed and Phonics Shed here.

Download the lesson planning and resources for the Phonics Shed lesson here.

Download the lesson planning and resources for the Spelling Shed lesson here.