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How we teach reading in our school

Our aim is to teach children the skills they need to be confident readers and to foster a life-long love of reading and books…

We teach children to read from the beginning of Reception and in Key Stage One through daily, focused phonics lessons; the Letters and Sounds programme is followed. As pupils become fluent readers, the focus shifts towards the understanding of texts, and we begin to build skills of inference and deduction. In guided reading sessions children are taught to make predictions, craft written responses to texts, empathise with characters through drama or role-play and engage in ‘book talk’ to explore likes, dislikes, puzzles and connections with the text they are reading.

A range of approaches are used to build a confident community of readers: regular sharing of book recommendations with peers to explain their preferences; class visits to our library; buddy reading where older children read with the younger pupils; book swaps and book battles.

Teachers choose quality texts to read to the whole class and inspire children. This enables the children to listen and really understand the meaning of texts. It is an opportunity to share thoughts together and learn from each other.

Children are encouraged to read at home every day, and junior age pupils use their reading diary to keep a track of their personal reading choices, explore responses and build their vocabulary as they read.

Reading is also developed and encouraged through using texts in other curriculum areas. In subjects, such as History and Science, children are required to read texts which feature technical vocabulary and at times carry out their own research.

We track carefully children’s progress in reading. Children not on track are quickly identified and supported with the aim to close the gap.