Reading at Brampton Ellis Primary school
We believe that ‘Reading is Freedom’: every child has the right to be able to use reading as a tool to access learning, growing in knowledge with a wider connection to the world and an increased confidence in their own understanding.
We are committed to ensuring that all children have the best foundation for reading success through the development of decoding strategies. We do this through daily delivery of phonics sessions underpinned by Letters and Sounds across Early Years and KS1 coupled with the use of phonics reading books. Our lessons follow a Revisit- Teach- Practice- Apply model. (Please see our letter of congratulations from Rt Hon Nick Gibb MP)
‘Big Book’ approach
In order to become fluent readers children need to see the range of reading skills being modelled effectively and to have the chance to practise these in a way that builds success. This method may involve whole class/groups and uses a range of texts from big books to online texts. This extends pupils’ understanding beyond a phonic approach.
Guided reading at the earliest stages is when children are specifically taught a wide range of skills at their level. It gives children the chance to apply their phonics and decoding learning to a range of texts whilst also developing a range of other strategies which are key to children becoming fluent, independent readers. Children in KS1 receive weekly guided reading sessions
Developing readers read regularly on a 1-1 basis. Those children identified as needing further support read with an adult daily as well as receiving appropriate intervention eg phonics, additional guided reading
To enable all children to access the range of comprehension skills they need to develop teachers may use pictures with the whole class alongside content domain characters to represent the range of comprehension skills to generate and answer questions.
Whole class reading
We have developed a ‘novel study’ approach from Y2 onwards whereby we use children’s literature as the focus for English learning and as a key driver to developing comprehension skills. By providing scaffolded support this approach allows all children to access texts that are more challenging than their own reading level. Not only does this approach challenge children to engage with high quality texts, it helps them to develop a love of reading. In addition, it emphasises the strong link between reading and writing, as children’s writing is developed through writing for a range of purposes that link to the story or a similar real life situation. Where possible, novels chosen also support a deeper understanding in topic learning.
There is a consistent approach to the sequence of guided reading sessions for KS2 readers: 1- orientation, 2-vocabulary focus, 3 -inference, deduction and authorial intent 4- warm application, 5- cold application which supports the children to be able to apply a range of comprehension skills independently. Where needed guided reading includes a whole class focus on fluency/expression.
Reading across the curriculum
We believe that in order to fully achieve ‘Reading Freedom’ we need to couple the ability to read with a desire for knowledge. Purposeful reading across the curriculum allows pupils to not only apply key comprehension skills but also to gain a wider and deeper understanding of a range of subjects, ultimately leading to a greater connection to the world and an appreciation of the possibilities that being able to read brings.
Love of reading
Anyone who says that they enjoy reading will recall fond memories of being read to as a child. We ensure that storytime is an enjoyable experience by choosing books that we think the children will enjoy whilst ensuring that we widen their reading diet with the aim of motivating the children to read more widely at home and from the class selection.
Class Reading Area
All classrooms have reading areas which the children are able to access to choose quality texts to simply read and enjoy.
Both KS1 and KS2 have a library area which all the children have access to. FS children take the opportunity to explore different types of books, talk about reading behaviours and share a story. KS1 use this space for reading groups and storytime and KS2 reading buddies also visit KS1 children.
Some children at KS2 are trained as librarians and run the lending library at lunchtime with timetabled slots for each year group.
National Literacy Trust research findings show that:
of those children who never read outside school, just 6% are above the expected level of reading for their age
8–11-year-olds who enjoy reading very much are four times more likely to read at the expected level for their age than children who do not enjoy reading at all
children who don’t enjoy reading at all are ten times more likely to have fallen behind and be reading below the expected level for their age than children who enjoy reading
The National Literacy trust research highlights the importance of reading at home, especially to help children with developing their knowledge of language and reading fluency. We encourage families to listen to their child read regularly and to develop a love of reading through reading to and sharing books together. We offer workshops to provide support for parents including phonics at KS1 and how to support with reading at home at KS2. Our guidance below may be of use. They include ideas about how to share a book, how to support with decoding, how to develop book talk/comprehension as well as local library info and suggestions for age appropriate books to share/read at home.
To encourage the children to read regularly at home we have a reading reward system in place from FS2 to Year 6. Each class teacher decides the best approach and what the reward will be with their children eg reading team approach: the team that has collectively read the most each week might be rewarded by having an extra day’s use of the climbing frame at KS 1 or by going on first lunch sitting at KS2. Eg individual reward approach: a class may prefer to receive individual Dojo rewards.
If ‘Reading is Freedom’ then writing is the means by which children are able to share their learning and depth of knowledge. Written communication is an essential life skill.
As a child enters Foundation Stage we develop both gross and fine motor control. Without well-developed fine motor control children will find it difficult to hold a writing implement and use it effectively
We are committed to ensuring that all children have the best foundation for writing success through the development of segmenting strategies which are taught through daily phonics sessions and embedded in our writing sessions using phonics mats to support the children to apply their phonics learning. Words that the children are expected to know are also embedded in the same way and link closely to the feedback that teachers give.
The ability to write fluently and at speed is essential for all learning across the curriculum. Letter formation, shape and size is taught alongside letter sounds in phonics and the children are supported to write joined up in line with their physical development. The school uses the Sheffield Structured Scheme.
Basic skills like handwriting and spelling are taught regularly so that the children become confident in these building blocks of writing
Reading into writing
We have developed a ‘novel study’ approach from Y2 onwards whereby we use children’s literature as a stimulus and model when teaching how to write specific text types/genres for a range of purposes.
We follow a consistent approach to scaffolding learning so that all children can achieve success. This is done by providing quality models (both real examples and those created by the teacher) for the children to learn about the features of text types. This is then built upon through the teaching of specific SPAG elements that are essential to that text type. Over a period of time children are given opportunity to write, supported by the classteacher, and then improve their own work. Feedback from the teacher and peers is an essential part of this improvement focus. Opportunities are also provided to ensure that children can deepen their understanding further and apply this in independent writing to become greater depth writers.
The teaching of subject specific language is a key component of topic learning. New and challenging vocabulary (tier 2 words) is introduced regularly to children through quality texts and wider curriculum learning and children are supported to use this in their speech and writing.
Writing across the curriculum
Purposeful writing across the curriculum allows pupils to embed their English learning and allows them to show the depth of understanding of a range of subjects, ultimately leading to a greater connection to the world and an appreciation of the possibilities that being able to read brings.
PM benchmarking is used to establish the small steps of progress made with early readers. Beyond White Level where children can decode and read fluently a range of supports are in place to support teacher judgement.
Regular Phonics assessment and tracking supports teachers in ensuring that children are working at the correct Letters and Sounds phase and accessing phonics reading books at an appropriate level.
Individual reading records are kept by class teachers to inform their teaching and to support teacher judgement.
PIRA – These are completed twice a year by (except Y2/Y6) and are used to support teacher judgement.