About Active Phonics

An Award Winning Project

Active Phonics is not a business. Active Phonics is an award winning project developed by a teacher in response to a problem. The project is supported by an educational charity to reach and help as many students as possible.

Active Phonics is a highly engaging multi-sensory fusion of phonics and Physical Education. It has been developed in an outstanding EBD special school as a means to address the needs of our most reluctant of readers, for example older pupils with reading ages of six years who have been in and out of mainstream education throughout their school lives.

Active Phonics allows systematic synthetic phonics to be taught in a fun and engaging way – a simple concept that addresses many of the educational, social and emotional needs of our pupils. The programme has been highly successful in engaging the most reluctant of readers and improving the literacy grades of pupils taking part in the programme as the quantative data progress results substantiate.

The project was one of the winners in the Let Teachers Shine competition and is currently nearing the end of it’s level 2 funding. As a direct result of SHINE’s support Active Phonics has gone from an idea being trialled with 10 pupils to a highly successful large scale project being delivered in over 10 schools across the Barnsley area. Please take a look at this video for further information.


The key reports agree that systematic synthetic phonics offers the best route for our children to become successful readers.

Active Phonics is a highly structured engaging phonics lesson that provides a way for children to overlearn and embed reading skills in a way that children are happy to engage with. Sessions are planned and based on assessment and the project is an additional way to deliver phonics and is not intended to replace classroom delivery. A number of the schools delivering the project do so as an intervention.

Many of the interventions and resources that you can buy are very much geared at young pupils. I follow the LCP planning of Letters and Sounds as this breaks the government document down into easy to follow daily and weekly panning. I follow the structure and the order of the sounds and words but teach them in a sports activity rather than in a traditional classroom setting as this is proving more engaging for reluctant readers / older pupils.

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