At Smawthorne Henry Moore Primary we believe that Reading underpins a successful journey in education. Reading is a fundamental part of the #SmawthorneExperience and we aim to nurture an exciting and challenging approach throughout the subject. We encourage the children to pick up a book and ‘get lost’ within it, fostering a ‘Love of Reading’ that will grow with each individual. From Nursery to Year 6 children are given vast opportunities to learn through literature and to read for enjoyment and pleasure; whether it be a picture, novel or factual book. Through reading we encourage ‘book talk’ where children can freely share their opinion and discuss their own interpretations surrounding the text they have read. Reading opens a door to a wealth of vocabulary, enhancing word knowledge which can then be applied through other curriculum areas.
Throughout school, we use the Literacy Shed VIPERS in reading lessons, so that the children can recognise the aspects of reading that they are working on. These are underpinned by the National Curriculum framework. To become a successful reader a child needs to show that they are able to use the CORE 4 skills effectively, which are: Predicting, Questioning, Clarifying and Summarising, at an age appropriate level. These essential skills are promoted through the VIPERS.
Reading through the Phases
There are many opportunities for reading during the school day including shared reading of texts during lesson input. Here are some of the things we do to create a love of reading and ensure good attainment and progress outcomes:
Small group guided reading is completed twice a week for children in EYFS and KS1 and once a week for those in KS2. This is an approach where the children are grouped by reading ability and exposed to both fiction and non-fiction at the reading level higher than that read independently. During the guided reading session times children are completing reading challenges that promote comprehension, phonics, grammar and independent reading skills. Phonics resources are available to encourage independent word building in Early Years and Key Stage 1, and where required in Key Stage 2.
Whole class guided reading is completed daily in KS2 and introduced towards the end of Year 2 in readiness for LKS2. At Smawthorne we use the VIPERS to inform the children of the reading strand that they are focussing on. During this session the children are exposed to age related reading material and their understanding of the text assessed through questioning. Children complete small tasks relating to the National Curriculum reading standards to consolidate their learning.
In addition to guided reading sessions children have an hour lesson each week based solely on Reading comprehension where they will actively read a text, annotate it, retrieve information presenting their understanding in a variety of ways. Skills are progressively taught from Y1-Y6 in readiness for statutory testing and to prepare our children for the demands of KS3.
Throughout school children read to adults on a 1-2-1 basis to support their reading skills and fluency.
How do we enrich the curriculum?
We are very lucky to have a newly refurbished woodland themed library which has designated reading areas. Children can access the library at an allotted class time and read in the tranquil and child-centred surroundings. Books are organised by year group therefore easy to access and can be loaned for home or classroom use. We ensure time is allocated to reading for pleasure and give children time to read within the school day; this is very important to us. Our school corridors all have reading areas which are replenished regularly to engage our children and we are currently developing an outdoor facility for use during break times.
Classroom reading and curriculum areas are rich in texts which are supported by book loans on a half termly basis from the Schools Library Service and all KS1 classes have puppet theatres to encourage the children to story-tell.
All children within school have login details to Bugclub, an online reading scheme that issues books to the children based on their reading ability. This programme also has comprehension tasks to consolidate what has been read. The children sometimes use this in school and there is an expectation that children access this resource as part of their homework expectation.
At Smawthorne we also have a range of opportunities within the academic year to further enhance reading opportunities for our children. Regular trips to the local library, visits by the BIG Red Bus, engaging with World Book Day and our fantastic story evenings to name a few.
How can you help your child?
To support their reading journey your child will bring different sorts of books home from school. When your child is in the early stages of learning to read you can help by encouraging them to sound out the letters in words and then to ‘blend’ the sounds together to make a whole word. You can hear how to say the sounds correctly by searching on YouTube for ‘Letters and Sounds Pronunciation’ video.
Sometimes your child might bring home a picture book that they know well, encourage your child to tell you the story out loud; ask them questions about things that happen or what they think about some of the characters in the story. We assess the children’s’ progress regularly and send home books that are matched to their ability. Children are always encouraged to read novels and other materials in addition to their school reading book to supplement their reading habits.
We know that our parents and carers are very busy people. But if you can find time to read to your child as much as possible, it helps him or her to learn about books and stories. They also learn new words and what they mean. Show that you are interested in reading yourself and talk about reading as a family. We have an adult book borrowing facility in the school reception area that we encourage parents to use.
To further assist parents and to gain an understanding of the approaches to reading that we use, annual workshops are run throughout school which are received very positively. Reading leaflets for each Key Stage can be found below.
You may also hear your children discussing the reading VIPERS; these can be found below and are also in your child’s planner.