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English – Reading


We believe that reading should be an enjoyable activity and our approach to the teaching of reading is firmly rooted in this belief. It is our aim to develop in children a love of reading and an ability to read with understanding for pleasure and for information which will inspire and motivate them to read throughout their lives.

In the Early Years and Key Stage 1, there is a great emphasis on the teaching of phonics and reading. We teach early reading through the systematic, synthetic phonics programme Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised. In Reception, children take part in a daily phonics lesson which follows the progression for Little Wandle Letters and Sounds and this continues in Year One to ensure children become fluent readers. At Key Stage 2, we extend and develop each child’s reading skills. Our children are able to explore reading through a range of strategies and structures that support their fluency and comprehension skills to help them become competent readers in addition to quality-first teaching in the classroom. In Key Stage 2, reading is taught in whole class sessions. These sessions are based on the overarching theme of each class underpinned by the anchor text as well as additional texts which support the theme. Sessions are also based on the wider curriculum, including Inspire/Aspire. These sessions aim to develop rich discussion where children are encouraged to share their own opinions and thoughts.

Children across the whole school are given books to read at home. These may be decodable phonics books in EYFS and Key Stage 1, reading scheme books or books from the class or school libraries. In EYFS and Key Stage 1, we believe that in order to develop a love of reading your child should also have access to high-quality children’s books in addition to decodable books. These books should offer you and your child an opportunity to explore exciting stories or things of interest but most of all will continue to support the development of your child’s vocabulary and sense of story structures. Therefore, alongside decodable phonics books, children will receive a story book to share with adults at home. This engagement with stories from an early age will pave the way for children to become self-motivated and habitual readers as they progress through the school.

When in Key Stage 2, children build on their autonomy by taking more responsibility for their own reading choices. At Holy Family, we use Accelerated Reader in Key Stage 2; children can choose a book appropriate to their stage of reading development to support progress in word reading and fluency, and a second book without restrictions from within the libraries as a free choice book to encourage and nurture reading for pleasure. Every class enjoys designated daily story times, in which children can listen to stories, poems and non-fiction texts to develop a shared love of reading. During story time, children are always read to by the teacher. Book talk opportunities allow children to talk with their class about their reading habits so they can share information they have learnt, stories or poems they have enjoyed and to give reading recommendations to their peers.

The school has a library where children benefit from good quality reading materials, both fiction and non-fiction, in a variety of genres. Every classroom also has a reading area/class library with a wide range of books. In these spaces, children have opportunities to recommend to others and to also select stories and poems that they would like to be shared in class.

Reading curriculum

Reading Events at Holy Family

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