Miss R. Coates is our school English Leader.
We recognise that reading is key to accessing all other areas of the curriculum. The importance and enjoyment of reading is therefore central to our practice. Every classroom has a dedicated reading area, and we have a well-stocked library available for all pupils. For children who prefer online learning, we have ‘Bug Club’, which the children can access for free from their home. We celebrate theme days such as Roald Dahl Day and World Book Day, and every class has a novel or author focus which changes regularly.
Phonics is taught systematically using a programme called ‘Read, Write, Inc’, which equips pupils with the necessary decoding skills to read, whilst structured reading time takes place daily to develop understanding and promote enjoyment. This scheme is used throughout Early Years and Key Stage 1, with the majority of pupils expected to successfully complete it by the end of their first term in Year 2. After completing the phonics scheme, pupils work in groups to develop their fluency, understanding and love of reading, as well as reading individually.
Every child receives a reading record to keep with their reading book. This should be returned to school every day, and is used by teachers, pupils and parents/ carers to make notes about your child’s current reading. Your child will read regularly with an adult in school from their first days with us, and should become more independent in reading and recording their activities as they progress through our school. We have a reading reward scheme for children who read regularly at home, building up to a free book!
Reading with your child is one of the most valuable educational and social activities you can undertake with them. We encourage you to supplement the range we offer with books of the child’s own, or from the local library, and to read with them every day. Together, we hope that we can create skilled readers for life, enjoyment and learning.
We celebrate reading through whole school events like Roald Dahl Day, Author visits and World Book Day. Recent themes include Alice in Wonderland and Bedtime stories.
From letter formation and pencil grips, to creating masterful plotlines and empathetic characters, we understand how complex the process of becoming an independent and skilled writer can be. To ensure basic skills are addressed consistently, we supplement our phonics scheme with a whole-school handwriting scheme. The scheme, Nelson Handwriting, encourages a neat and consistent cursive style which enables children become automatically fluent in their handwriting, enabling them to concentrate on other areas such as narrative composition.
Spelling receives a focus in Key Stage 1 during Read, Write Inc sessions, and this element continues with Read, Write, Inc Spelling throughout Key Stage 2.
Our Key Stage 2 Library was opened in September 2017 and is regularly updated with the latest books.
We also celebrate a different author each month to promote and encourage the children to read good quality texts. Some of the those authors include; Michael Morpurgo, Frank Cottrell Boyce, Pamela Butchart and Louis Sachar.
Books are used to introduce cross curricular topics and start discussions about the world. The books above are just some of the books the children have enjoyed reading.
Writing is taught in units, which we build up from an initial stimulus such as a visit or an exciting story or activity. Speaking and communication skills feed into writing skills, and are developed rigorously, in order to build vocabularies, confidence and fluency. Pupils write daily in some form or another, across many areas of the curriculum. We place value in creativity and expression, across a range of genres and subjects. We use ‘Talk for Writing’ or 'The Write Stuff' strategies to further enhance our writing teaching and learning. Extended writing sessions take place weekly to develop resilience and independence, consolidate knowledge and provide a finished product after drafting and editing.
We regularly arrange visits from authors and companies to promote reading. One of the visits we enjoyed was from Anthony Pedley. The children were enthralled with his performance of Roald Dahl classic - The BFG.
"He had a great performance voice!" Harry
"I thought he was the real BFG!" Laura