Reading

We value reading as a key life skill, and are dedicated to enabling all of our pupils to become lifelong readers and be secure with reading the English language, both for enjoyment and to enable them to access the written word in everyday life in modern Britain. We encourage all pupils to read widely across both fiction and non-fiction to develop their knowledge of themselves and the world in which they live, to establish an appreciation and love of reading, to gain knowledge across the curriculum and develop their comprehension skills. It is our intention to ensure that, by the end of their primary education, all pupils are able to read fluently, and with confidence, not only to access any subject in their forthcoming secondary education, but to provide them with life skills to take them into adulthood. By the time children leave Sandringham Primary, they are competent readers who can recommend books to their peers, have a thirst for reading a range of genres including poetry, and participate in discussions about books, including evaluating an author’s use of language and the impact this can have on the reader.

Starting in Reception, we use the phonics programme ‘Read, Write, Inc’ as a method of learning letter sounds and blending them together to read and write words. As part of this, children have daily phonics sessions in small groups where they participate in speaking, listening and spelling activities that are matched to their developing needs. The teachers draw upon observations and continuous assessment to ensure children are stretched and challenged and to identify children who may need additional support. Children work through the different sets, learning and developing their phonics sounds and knowledge. They also participate in small group shared reading sessions as well as enjoying a picture book read to them daily.

Moving into Key Stage 1, children continue with Read, Write, Inc Phonic. Children read levelled books which match their reading level and it is expected that children also read these books with a family member, who makes comments in the child’s reading record. Children also participate in whole class shared sessions where children are exposed to a range of different text types, genres and discrete teaching of each reading domain, following the mastery approach, which continue into Key Stage 2.

Find out more about Phonics by visiting our Phonics page.

Moving into Key Stage 2, reading is taught each day in discrete lessons through the core text as well as non-fiction and poetry following the ‘VIPERS’ approach. as our method to explicitly teach each skill. Our whole class shared reading sessions are used as a powerful tool to allow all children to make progress in reading and provide regular and supportive opportunities for children to encounter engaging texts that will resonate with their interests and capture their imagination. Carefully crafted questions allow for children to develop their comprehension skills at an appropriate level. All children have the opportunity to read aloud during shared reading, and in addition, some pupils may read at least once more per week with a teacher, teaching assistant or reading volunteer; the focus being on the lowest attaining 20% of pupils. Reading interventions are also matched appropriately.

Children continue to develop their love of reading by being able to select a reading book based on their personal interests. There are also a plethora of opportunities for the children to read purely to stimulate their love of reading: a love of reading is promoted by children being read to each day by their class teacher from a novel which has specifically been chosen to be engaging, stimulating and challenging; each classroom has an attractive reading area that is filled with books suitable for the children’s reading age; children have the opportunity to read silently and for enjoyment at various points during the week; and there is also a comfortable, well-stocked library where children are encouraged to take out books to read.

Parents and carers are of paramount importance in supporting their children to develop reading skills, and so we actively encourage a home-school partnership which enables parents and carers to understand how to enhance the skills being taught in school by providing various workshops. We also have an expectation that children are listened to at east 3 times a week at home and to complete the reading diary, which can provide valuable reading information between school and home.