Reading Intent: How we plan for this subject...
Reading is an essential life skill. We support all our children in developing the key skills to read successfully, whilst aiming to give them a life long love of reading. Reading is initially introduced through systematic synthetic phonics. With synthetic phonics children are taught to read letters or group of letters by saying the sound(s) they represent; they are taught that the letter l sounds like llllll when we say it. Children can then start to read words by blending (synthesising) the sounds together to make a word. As a school, we use DfE approved Jolly Phonics throughout Early Years and Key Stage 1, crucial in this vital first stage of reading and letter recognition. We encourage parents to engage regularly at home in order to secure letter recognition and word blending skills, and to practise reading. Our early books are fully decodable and are matched to the sounds that they have learnt in school. At the end of Year 1, the children will complete the phonics screening check and results of this will be included in their end of year reports.
KS1 and KS2 readers
Our reading scheme consists of Oxford Reading Tree supported by a blend of books from different publishers. These are banded by phonic phase and progress in difficulty and phonics used as the children progress. As children move through the scheme, they will also encounter tricky words that will be needed to be learnt by sight. Children progress through this scheme at their own pace, but class teachers ensure that they do not tackle books containing aspects of phonics that they have not yet mastered. It is nationally recognised that those children who read regularly at home tend to make quicker progress than those who don’t, and so we encourage our families read together regularly and provide phonics workshops to aid parental understanding.
Once a child completes the reading scheme, they move onto becoming a ‘Free Reader’. Then children are free to choose their own reading material from consecutive coloured band within the school library or classroom bookshelves. Teachers keep a close eye on how each child is progressing to ensure that the level of the books chosen matches their ability. We encourage books that are within each child's 'zone of proximal development' (ZPD): books that will challenge the child without causing frustration or loss of motivation. We have a well-stocked library that we update regularly, with books organised by difficulty using the Accelerated Reader system. Children are also encouraged to read books of choice from home or local libraries.
Children who find reading more challenging are quickly identified by our teachers and SENCO, and support is put in place. These children are 'daily readers' which means they will be listened to by an adult every day. During this time, adults will investigate, encourage and model lots of different reading skills such as making predictions and inferences, discussing vocabulary and explaining characterisation and plot.
Several children also have subscriptions to Nessy, an interactive learning system developed with specialist teachers at the Bristol Dyslexia Centre, that teaches and reinforces reading and spelling through animated fun activities. Daily practice both at home and at school helps to close the gaps in their reading and spelling ability.