Read Write Inc. Phonics guide for parents
Find out what Read Write Inc. Phonics is and find eBooks, videos, and kits to help your child as they learn to read with Read Write Inc. Phonics at home.
Read Write Inc. Phonics is a literacy programme developed by Ruth Miskin and published by Oxford University Press. It is taught in over 5000 schools in the United Kingdom, making it the country’s most popular way for children to learn to read using phonics.
In the programme children learn sounds and the letters that represent them, and how to form the letters. Then, they read books written using only the letters they have learnt (and a small number of separately taught ‘tricky words’). This gives the children plenty of early success and builds up their reading confidence.
Read Write Inc. Phonics includes lots of useful kits for parents as well as classroom resources. Our reading and writing kits have been developed for parents who want to support their child’s phonics learning at home. You can use them to systematically teach all of the common sounds in the English language, helping your child to recognise the sounds and then to ‘sound-blend’ them into words for reading. Children become fluent readers, confident speakers and willing writers.
How will my child learn to read?
The Read Write Inc. Phonics approach teaches children to read sets of sounds and then blend them to read words. The books that they read at school will only contain the sounds they’ve already learnt, so children learn quickly and confidently.
Set 1 Speed Sounds and books
First your child will learn to read:
- Set 1 Speed Sounds (sounds written with one letter): m a s d t i n p g o c k u b f e l h r j v y w z x and sounds written with two letters (your child will call these ‘special friends’): sh th ch qu ng nk ck
- Words containing these sounds, by sound-blending, e.g. m–a–t mat, c–a–t cat, g–o–t got, f–i–sh fish, s–p–o–t spot, b–e–s–t best, s–p–l–a–sh splash
- At school, they will read Read Write Inc. Phonics Sound Blending Books and Red, Green and Purple Storybooks.
Set 2 Speed Sounds and books
Whilst they are practising reading stories with words made up of Set 1 Speed Sounds, your child will also learn to read:
- Set 2 Speed Sounds: ay ee igh ow oo oo ar or air ir ou oy
- Words containing these sounds
- At school, they will read Read Write Inc. Phonics Pink, Orange and Yellow Storybooks.
Set 3 Speed Sounds and books
Whilst they are practising reading stories with words made up of Set 1 and Set 2 Speed Sounds, your child will also learn to read:
- Set 3 Speed Sounds: ea oi a–e i–e o–e u–e aw are ur er ow ai oa er ire ear ure
- Words containing these sounds
- At school, they will read Read Write Inc. Phonics Blue and Grey Storybooks.
You will find a useful phonics audio guide to all these sounds in our Phonics guide. It is really important to say the sounds clearly to help your child learn them. We say ‘mmmm’ not ‘muh’ and ‘lllll’ not ‘luh’ when teaching the sounds. This really helps children when they learn to blend sounds together to read words.
What is Fred Talk?
If your child’s school is using Read Write Inc. Phonics, teachers will introduce your child to a toy frog called Fred once he or she is ready to start reading words. Fred can only say the sounds in a word and needs your child to help him read the word. Fred will say the sounds and children will work out the word. For example, Fred will say the sounds c–a–t, and children will say the word cat. This is Fred Talk: sounding out the word.
In the early stages of learning to read, help your child to learn the sounds represented by the letters (e.g. mmmm), rather than the letter names (e.g. em). This will help them when they start blending sounds together to read words.
There are lots of ways you can help your child learn with Read Write Inc. Phonics at home. Read our free Read Write Inc. Phonics eBooks, watch our Read Write Inc. Phonics videos, or browse our selection of Read Write Inc. Phonics kits for parents to find inspiration.
Your child may also bring home a ‘Book Bag Book’. These books build upon the ideas, sounds, and words your child has learnt using Read Write Inc. Phonics in school. You can support your child by helping them to read their Book Bag Book and having a go at the pre-reading and comprehension activities.
Read our free Read Write Inc. Phonics eBooks with your child. Each book includes fun, decodable stories as well as guidance and notes for parents. Please note you will need to login or register to use our eBook library.
This comprehensive kit is packed full of resources to help your child learn to read and write. It is a perfect way to prepare your child for school and support them as they begin to learn phonics in Nursery and Reception. The pack includes:
Bedroom frieze featuring the first 30 sounds.
Illustrated flashcards to help children learn and practise reading the first 30 sounds.
Handwriting book for children to practise writing the letters.
Wipe-clean sheet and pen to encourage your child to practise tracing the sounds again and again.
Parent handbook with practical advice, support, and information about teaching phonics.
This kit will improve the ability of your developing reader by introducing first blending skills. It also provides handwriting practice to ensure your child can progress as a writer as they gain confidence in reading. This is the second kit in the series, but each kit can also be used on its own. The kit includes:
Two Blending Sounds books focusing on first blending skills as a first step in learning to read words.
Five storybooks with introductions, for you to share with your child.
Handwriting book encouraging children to practise writing simple words.
Poster and sticker sheet for your child to keep and stick on their bedroom wall.
Parent handbook with practical advice, support, and information on developing your child’s reading skills.
Support your child’s steps towards becoming an independent reader and writer with this kit, designed to help your child to read longer sentences and stories, and to practise writing a growing range of words. This is the third kit in the series, but each kit can also be used on its own. The kit includes:
Six storybooks with introductions, for you to share with your child
Phonics flashcards to help encourage your child to learn the next set of sounds that make up words
Handwriting book providing practice writing the words featured in the storybooks and flashcards
Parent handbook offering practical advice for supporting your child’s developing reading and writing skills
These flashcards offer a fun way to introduce the letters and sounds that make up words, using the ‘Speed Sounds’. Perfect for practising all 31 Speeds Sounds, accompanying illustrations will help to place the sounds in context, making them easier for your child to remember them.
With parent notes offering guidance, these cards are the ideal way to support your child’s first steps in learning to read.
Following on from the bestselling Read Write Inc. Phonics Flashcards, this second pack is a fun way to introduce Speed Sounds Set 2 and 3. With humorous illustrations and rhymes, these cards are perfect for introducing the next steps in phonics.
Accompanied by clear guidance for parents throughout, this is a great way to support school learning.
More phonics help
- Find everything you need to know about phonics on our Phonics made easy page >
- Find more tips on helping your child learn to read on our Reading pages >
- Find downloadable and interactive activities for ages 3–11 on our Kids’ activities pages >
- Find free eBooks for ages 3–11 to practise reading on the Oxford Owl eBook library >
- For phonics video support, visit our Phonics YouTube playlist >