Phonics Screening

"Read as much as possible to and with your child."

What is the Phonics Screening Check? (monster test)

Children in Year 1 throughout the country will all be taking part in a phonics screening check during the same week in June. Children in Year 2 will also take the check if they did not achieve the required result when in Year 1 or they have not taken the test before.

The phonics screening check is designed to confirm whether individual children have learnt sufficient phonic decoding and blending skills to an appropriate standard.

What Happens During the Test?

The test contains 40 words. Each child will sit one to one and read each word aloud to a teacher. The test will take approximately 10 minutes in total per child, although all children are different and will complete the check at their own pace. The list of words the children read is a combination of 20 real words and 20 nonsense words (we call them alien words).

What is a nonsense word(alien word)?

The nonsense words (made up words) will be shown to your child with a picture of an alien. This provides the children with a context for the nonsense word which is independent from any existing vocabulary they may have. Nonsense words are included because they will be new to all pupils; they do not favour children with a good vocabulary knowledge or visual memory of words.

Here is an example of some nonsense words:

  • jup
  • mip
  • ul
  • vean
  • voke
  • phape
  • spewt

How Are The Results Used?

Results from the check will be used by schools to analyse their own performance and for Ofsted to use in inspections.

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