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Reading

Intent

At Plymtree Primary C of E School we understand that children who are confident, adept readers will be empowered to succeed in all other areas. We believe that extensive reading and exposure to a wide range of texts makes a huge contribution to educational achievement. Put simply, reading is the key to all learning.

We are also aware that reading has the potential to open children’s minds to realities other than their own and can give them the means to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually.

We intend our children to become confident, enthusiastic, reflective and articulate readers, who read for pleasure on a regular basis.

Implementation

Through reading, pupils are introduced to new vocabulary that can then be used in their own writing and speech. In our Foundation and Key Stage One setting we promote a love of reading with a rich environment which stimulates and encourages children to decode. We have a variety of resources including puppets, story sacks, small world and role play resources to stimulate our children’s use of vocabulary. Our youngest children also enjoy a wide range of high-quality texts which increase their knowledge of rhythm, rhyme and pattern in language.

We teach early reading and writing through synthetic phonics which shows children how to blend sounds to read and segment sounds to write. Our phonics teaching combines the ‘Letters and Sounds’ programme with kinaesthetic aspects of the ‘Jolly Phonics’ scheme. Children have discrete, daily phonics sessions in small groups where they participate in speaking, listening and spelling activities that are matched to their developing needs. During these phonics sessions children are introduced to new phonemes, can practise and revise previous learning and have plenty of opportunities to apply the knowledge they have. Children are encouraged to apply their knowledge in any reading or writing activities they may undertake across the curriculum. Sight-recognition of words complements our teaching of phonics. Teachers draw upon observations and continuous assessment to ensure children are stretched and challenged and to identify children who may need additional support.

Our school reading scheme links closely with phonics lessons and targets the sounds children need to embed. Children’s phonic knowledge is assessed on a bi-weekly basis to ensure children’s reading books pinpoint specific phonemes.

We understand that parents and carers play a vital role in the development of early reading and in nurturing positive habits and attitudes towards reading. To consolidate our phonics learning we encourage parents and carers to share phonics-based books at home with their children on a daily basis. Interventions provide additional 1:1 reading time for those children who require it.

To promote reading for pleasure children take home books of their choice each week from our school library, which offers a wide variety of fiction and non-fiction texts.

Children take part in Guided Reading lessons, where they are exposed to a range of good quality texts. Children read individually, in small groups and as a whole class. During these sessions they are given the opportunity to develop their decoding and comprehension skills.

To improve our children’s grasp of story language, enthuse them with a love of books and inspire them as writers, our teachers read texts from our ‘Recommended Reading List’ out loud to their class each day. These quality texts are specific to each group. Children in Upper Key Stage 1 onwards are also given the opportunity to read quietly to themselves several times a week.

Reading is widely promoted at Plymtree. Bright and colourful displays celebrating children’s written work and reading interests are displayed throughout the school. Older children are encouraged to write their own book reviews, which are shared with their peers and put on display.

Each classroom has a reading area that is stocked with quality ‘Recommended Reading’ texts of an appropriate reading age. These quality books change in accordance with the current topic and are carefully chosen to cover a wide range of reading interests and abilities. Our class reading areas are comfortable places for children to read and reading materials are presented in an attractive and inviting way.

Our reading curriculum at Plymtree C of E Primary is based upon the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum and 2014 Primary National Curriculum in England, which provides a broad framework and outlines the knowledge and skills taught in each Key Stage.

 

Impact

Through the teaching of systematic phonics, our aim is for children to become fluent readers by the end of Key Stage One. This way, children can focus on developing their fluency and comprehension skills as they move through the school.

Our aim is to achieve a GLD (Good Level of Development) in EYFS in line with national standards, and be at or above the national standard in the Phonics Screening in Year 1, KS1 National Tests and KS2 National Tests.

Of course, the impact of our reading curriculum goes far beyond the results of the statutory assessments. By exposing our children to the world of literature and giving them the tools to access and understand it, we believe that our reading curriculum has the potential to ignite a passion for books that will last a lifetime.

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