Subject leader - Mr Walton
Children at St Andrew’s should leave us loving reading and regularly reading for pleasure. They should enjoy reading a variety of texts and should talk in detail and at length about their reading, favourite authors, books they enjoy and how reading and writing support one another. Children will be taught the skills needed to initially decode sounds then words; blend sounds to create words; read sentences, paragraphs moving to whole texts with accuracy and understanding. Reading occurs throughout the curriculum and children transfer their skills across all lessons.
At St Andrew’s, we believe learning to write is one of the most important things that a child at primary school will learn. Not only do children use their writing in almost all other subjects of the curriculum but good writing also gives children a voice to share their ideas, opinions and imagination with the world. We use a variety of learning and teaching styles in our daily literacy lessons in order to meet the needs of all our pupils. All year groups will teach the relevant objectives for literacy through a key high quality text, which will often relate to their topic work as well, creating cross curricular links and a fluency within all learning each half term.
How do we do it? / Implementation
Children are given many different reading opportunities throughout the school day. At St Andrew’s, we use the Accelerated Reader programme from Year 2 upwards. Each day, the children take part in a guided reading activity in the time slot after lunch (12:45-13:15). Reading folders and books are used to record these guided reading activities. Every child will have access to quality engaging texts, levelled in book banded colours whilst also being given opportunities to read a variety of genres and text types throughout the week. After finishing their levelled book, children will take an online Accelerated Reader quiz and their reading band will be adjusted accordingly. Children’s reading levels are formally assessed every term and their reading level is adjusted accordingly so we are able to continue to challenge and develop children’s reading progress.
Guided reading sessions focus on our seven reading priorities: Predicting, Clarifying, Summarising, Questioning, Evaluating, Inferring and Making Connections. Daily reading interventions are also designed and used for children identified as requiring additional support with their reading.
The school library encourages children to choose and select their own books. It is open throughout the school day so that lessons can use the library’s rich and varied resources. Children visit the school library at least once weekly with their class to swap, change, discuss and enjoy reading.
Children at St Andrew’s are read to every day. Children and adults engage in a variety of high-quality texts from a rich range of authors and illustrators. The class teacher will read a story to the class in a set story time every day at the end of the day to promote a love of reading.
At St Andrew’s, we follow the Read Write Inc phonics programme in infant classes. Children from EYFS to Year 2 learn systematic phonics through this programme. Read Write Inc improves our pupils’ speaking skills, fluency and confidence in all aspects of literacy, raises self-esteem, develops social skills and establishes a culture of co-operative learning. In EYFS, Year 1 and 2, children work in a phonics-based scheme, learning to decode texts and practise comprehension skills through decodable texts. They receive daily phonics tuition using the Read Write Inc programme. The children sit phonics screenings checks in the summer of Year 1. Decodable books take the onus out of decoding the text and children are able to explore comprehension skills fully. They also study ‘real books’ alongside phonic readers to promote comprehension skills and groups are small so reading skills and tuition is matched to the ability of the group. From EYFS-Year 2, reading records are used and parents/carers and teachers to sign these at least once a week to show the class teacher the child has been read to by an adult. For more information on the Read Write Inc programme please view the videos on the following link.
In KS1 and 2, children follow the national curriculum through a genre-mapped writing cycle devised by the school. It is text based and we try to link texts to the current History, Geography or Science curriculum. This gives children a broad base of knowledge, facts, vocabulary, real life experience and context to base their writing on. Grammar is mapped by genre and year group, based on the new National Curriculum expectations. Spelling and handwriting sessions occur frequently through the week.
Texts children learn about may be fiction or non-fiction books, picture books or chapter books, poetry or newspaper articles, and these will be the basis for learning and writing content, and may be adapted to suit the particular needs of the class.
Literacy lessons will use a range of creative approaches to support the pupil’s understanding and exploration of the text, such as drama, hot-seating, story maps, speaking and listening tasks, visits to settings, illustration, debates or research.
In addition to these creative approaches, there is consistent teaching of the structure and features of different text types with a link to the grammar and punctuation needed to making their independent writing successful. This will involve looking at good examples of the text type, identifying the key features, creating toolkits for writing, teacher modelling and time to draft, edit and publish where appropriate.
By the time children leave St Andrew’s, we expect our pupils to be able to: