Year 1 Phonics and the Phonics Screening Test

The phonics screening test is a statutory test that Government have implemented to check that the children have reached a good level of understanding of the sounds needed to decode words in reading.

The test comprises of 40 words that the children read. The words are a mixture of real words and non-words. The non-words have a picture of a monster next to them so that the children know that they are not real words. The children have to be able to read at least 32 of the words to gain a pass. The words are delivered in sealed packs and are not revealed to the teachers or children until the day of the test.

We have daily phonics lessons to prepare for the test and we check the children’s progress at regular intervals. The children see the phonics test as fun (we play it as a game called ‘Name that Monster’). We practice sounds and the sounds are often sent home as the weekly spellings to reinforce the work done in class.

If the children do not reach the pass mark we can test them again in Year 2. The children progress at different rates and there is often almost a full year between the age of the youngest and oldest children in class.

You will receive a letter regarding your child’s result before the end of the summer term. We will also record the result on the children’s end of year report.

If you have any questions or concerns about the test then please do not hesitate to speak to us.

The link has some test materials to give you an idea of what the test looks like and the type of words your child will be expected to read. The words start simply and become increasingly complex.