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How is reading taught in our school?

The school teaches reading through a variety of methods. The graded reading scheme is put together with a range of books from the Oxford Reading Tree and Project X. This offers a story based approached promoting the children’s knowledge of story structures and sequences before introducing words and sentences. With the introduction of the new curriculum in 2014 the school has purchased some purely decodable books of varying degrees of difficulty. These books will be used to teach reading in the early years classes and allow the children to read words and sentences through segmenting (breaking words down into phonemes which are the smallest unit of sound) and then blending them together again. These fully decodable books are both fiction and non-fiction and are for reading at home and school alongside other ‘reading for pleasure books’. There are different types of reading taking during the week.


In shared reading the teachers use a single text with the whole class. This text then forms the basis for the learning. Guided reading is a small group activity, comprising approximately 6 children. The reading material, questions and activities are designed to target the specific needs of the group. These are differentiated across the class.


Individual reading takes place in a one to one situation with the child sharing his/her book with an adult in a quiet environment, allowing discussion to accompany the reading.


The teaching of reading is also accompanied by the daily teaching of synthetic phonics in the early years and key stage 1. Phonemes (the sound letters make)are taught in a systematic way. Graphemes (the way a phoneme looks) are taught, practised and applied through the use of ICT, practical activities and recorded methods. The school follows the letters and sounds and Phonics Play schemes of work.


The approaches to the teaching of reading and synthetic phonics have had a positive impact on the achievement of our children. 88% of year 4 children achieved are related expectations or above at the end of 2018/19. 100% of the year 1 children passed their phonics screen checks in June 2019. This is well above national averages.