St Winifred’s RC Primary School have a clear, consistent, whole school approach to reading. Competence in reading is key to independent learning and is given the highest priority at our school, enabling the children to become enthusiastic, independent, and reflective readers. Success in reading has a direct effect upon progress in all other areas of the curriculum and is crucial to developing children’s self-confidence and motivation.
The teaching of phonics begins in Reception following Letters and Sounds which is a clearly sequential scheme of work. Phonics lessons are taught daily and consist of a range of practical activities where children explore letters and the sounds they make. The children are then given opportunities to apply these skills.
We promote a love for reading to ensure that children develop the knowledge and skills to become life–long readers. We believe this is key for children to access other areas of the curriculum with success.
We have a ‘book-based’ approach to our English Curriculum. High quality, challenging, whole-class texts are used to teach the majority of the English objectives and allow children to immerse themselves in the book. The book then provides a purposeful context for high quality writing opportunities. We encourage children to have pride in their writing across all areas of the curriculum and produce work to a high standard.
Every class has a class reading book which is read to the children regularly in order to enhance their exposure to high quality texts. Teachers read with children in groups during guided reading sessions, using a range of quality texts. Children visit the school library each week and choose our own book to read for pleasure, as well as accessing a progressive reading scheme to help them with reading at home. Children need the space and time to make choices about books, and to discover authors and texts they might not get chance to look at outside of school. Our teachers check we are reading books that will challenge the children and create exciting reading areas around the school.
We assess reading using teacher assessment, termly Scholastic tests, Testbase and other materials such as Assess and Progress and Salford Reading test. In Year 1 there is a statutory Phonics Screening Check undertaken in the Summer Term. In Reception, Year 2 and Year 6 there are also statutory assessments of reading. Across the school, on-going teacher assessment using SIMs tracking is undertaken and termly data analysis is conducted by the English lead who also undertakes a range of other monitoring activities such as: Pupil Voice, lesson observations/ learning walks and planning and work scrutiny.