Reading and Phonics
Reading at Throckley Primary School - Our Reading Mission
At Throckley Primary School, we strive to promote a love of reading in all that we do. Our bespoke curriculum has a vast selection of rich and inspirational stories at its heart; we ensure that pupils have lots of opportunities to read in lots of different contexts. Each subject has key texts woven through each area of study, meaning that learning is linked to storytelling and therefore engaging and relevant. We believe that being a fluent and avid reader opens doors for children to the wider world and gives them the tools they need to be lifelong learners. It is out mission to ensure that all children leave us at the end of Year 6 as fluent and avid readers, armed with the tools necessary in order thrive in Key Stage Three and beyond.
Phonics at Throckley Primary School
At Throckley Primary we use Read Write Inc. which is a structured phonics programme designed to help all children learn to read fluently and at speed so they can focus on developing their skills in comprehension, vocabulary and spelling. The programme is designed for Reception to Year 2 children and is used, where necessary, as an intervention programme for children in Years 3 and 4. Children learn the 44 common sounds in the English language and how to blend them to read and spell.
At Throckey Primary School, we firmly believe that reading is the key that unlocks the whole curriculum so the ability to efficiently decode is essential. Read Write Inc. sessions occur each day in Reception and KS1, as the continuity and pace of the programme is key to accelerating the progress of children’s reading development. In KS2, those children who are still accessing phonics will receive daily phonics lessons each week in small groups.
Through Read Write Inc, we aim to teach all children to:
- apply the skill of blending phonemes in order to read words.
- segment words into their constituent phonemes in order to spell words.
- learn that blending and segmenting words are reversible processes.
- read high frequency words that do not conform to regular phonic patterns.
- read texts and words that are within their phonic capabilities as early as possible.
- decode texts effortlessly so all their resources can be used to comprehend what they read.
- spell effortlessly
At Throckley Primary School, we promote a love of books from children's first day with us in Nursery. We firmly believe that sharing high quality picture books both at home and at school engages children with the majesty of storytelling and supports children as they develop their understanding of the world and broaden their vocabulary. For this reason, children who access our Read Write Inc. phonics programme take home a picture book each week, which we encourage parents and carers to read to their child as often as possible.
It is essential that, as children learn to read independently, they access phonetically decodable books which are matched to their phonics knowledge. Book Bag Books are part of the Read Write Inc. phonics programme and ensure that children are engaging decodable texts during the early stages of reading. Strategic half termly assessments ensure that Book Bag Books are matched appropriately to each child. All children who access the Read Write Inc. phonics programme take Book Bag Books home to read with an adult and we encourage parents and carers to engage with school staff regularly through the share home/school reading record.
Once children are able to read fluently and at speed, and no longer access the phonics programme, they then take home banded texts which are aligned to the National Curriculum. They are engaging, accessible and appropriate to children's stage of development. Each colour in the book band includes a range of fiction and non-fiction books which children are keen to pick up and enjoy.
As children progress through Key Stage Two, and become fluent readers, they are encouraged to read our 'Must Read' selection of books in each year group. These texts have been carefully chosen to provide children with a rich reading diet which includes a range of authors and genres. Both classic novels and modern texts have been included, ensuring that children read widely.
Opportunities for Reading in School
At Throckley Primary School, we immerse children in high quality literature across the school. Pupils read regularly in all areas of the curriculum and we strive to develop children's love of reading through:
- Whole Class Text Study - English lessons are taught through a quality text which is strategically chosen to challenge children and to align closely with wider curriculum objectives. Across the academic year, texts in each year group will include a literary classic as well as texts which have been chosen due to the rich language exploration and opportunities for vocabulary development they offer. Children will engage in 'hard thinking' in reading lessons which promote a deeper comprehension of the text before pausing the book study to embark on a sequence of work which results in a written outcome, linked to the text. Where appropriate, class texts are studied as model's for children's own narrative writing.
- Whole Class Reading Lessons - Children in Key Stage Two enjoy whole class reading lessons daily, during which they are immersed in the class text. These sessions provide further opportunity to read aloud, modelling reading with expression and intonation, as well as exploring plot, themes, vocabulary and inferred meaning in depth as a whole class. Rich tasks are planned for these sessions, through which children develop key reading comprehension competencies, focussing on retrieve; infer; vocabulary; predict; explain; retrieve; and summarise.
- Reading Across the Curriculum - Pupils read a range of books linked to other areas of their learning. Within Key Stage Two, there is a focus on 'reading to learn' across foundation curriculum areas, with children engaging in wider research, both online and through fiction and non-fiction texts.
- Story Time - Across the whole school, books are read aloud and shared with pupils, helping children to hear expressive reading and to develop an enthusiasm for reading books themselves. Class books are shared with pupils, where they read along with the teacher.