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In Reception, children at Barnes are taught the sounds made by individual letters, digraphs (where two letters make one sound such as ‘ch’) and trigraphs (where three letters make one sound such as ‘igh’). They learn to segment words into their sounds such as c-oa-t and to blend them back together again to enable them to decode words they have sounded out.

In addition to this, they learn to instantly recognise by sight the Barnes first 100 high frequency words. Some of these words are decodable such as ‘and’ whereas others are what we term ‘tricky’ (i.e. they are not decodable using phonic knowledge such as ‘one’). Learning these high frequency words enables the children to access texts and reduce the working memory load when approaching an unknown text.

Our Barnes 100 high frequency words can be found here:

High frequency – 1 – 100 words