Our reading curriculum is designed with our school vision at its forefront: inspire, enjoy, achieve. Teaching children to read and to be readers is, arguably, the most important role for primary education as reading opens up opportunities – for enjoyment, learning, empathy and understanding. It is therefore a central aim at Blackhall Primary School that all children should become competent, effective readers who decode accurately, read with comprehension and, most importantly, take enjoyment in reading. We aim to develop children who not only can read but do read.
Through a lively, engaging reading curriculum we seek to:
- Develop children’s positive attitudes to reading so that they are committed, independent readers by the time they leave our school
- Teach children the skills and strategies they need to be able to understand and read effectively, whether they are reading for pleasure or to find information
- Improve their understanding – and hence their enjoyment – of different sorts of text
- Introduce children to a wide range of high quality texts, both fiction and non-fiction, and to excellent authors and illustrators, in order to help them make informed choices for themselves about books they wish to read.
By explicitly teaching to these aims, we hope to achieve our objectives of:
- Raising standards in reading comprehension, so most children achieve the expected standard by the time they leave the school
- All children self-identifying as liking reading by the time they leave our school
Early Reading and Phonics
We use the Read Write Inc programme in Nursery, Reception and Key Stage 1. This programme includes a systematic and dynamic whole-school approach to teaching phonics. This programme is supplemented by a wide range of other reading materials that the children use at home and at school. Children in Key Stage 1 follow a phonics programme that supports their individual reading level. We also use the Read Write Inc reading books that coincide with the sounds taught in school in one given week.
Teachers carefully choose and send home a corresponding Read Write Inc book-bag book that is a phonetically decodable reading book, containing sounds the children have been taught. Children also receive a home reading record, which allows parents to record any information they wish to pass on to the class teacher regarding the books read.
In Key Stage 2, we use Fresh Start to teach older readers to read accurately and fluently with good comprehension. The programme is rooted in phonics and uses age-appropriate decodable texts.
What is Read Write Inc?
Information for parents and families
For help supporting your child at home with their targeted sounds, please see the video on how to pronounce the sounds:
Teaching Reading at Blackhall Primary
At Blackhall Primary we teach reading, focusing on an individual reading domain each lesson.
What is a reading domain?
Reading domains were first introduced in 2016 in the national curriculum test framework. Reading content domains highlight the elements of that national curriculum that will be assessed as part of the English reading test in the KS2 SATs. The reading domains of KS2 include author choice, vocabulary, compare, contrast and comment, retrieval, inference, summary and prediction.
At Blackhall Primary we want to ensure children have access to a wide range of texts. This may be through reading lessons, 1:1 reading, whole class novels or audio books. We want to immerse children in a language rich environment. High quality class texts have been selected to challenge and inspire children’s thinking and is a driver for the teaching of writing and grammar, punctuation and spelling. You can view our whole school overview of class texts below:
Progression of skills
We have worked hard to ensure there is a progression of skills for each pupil as they move from Early Years to Upper Key Stage Two. We have developed Progression of Skills documents which shows the expectations for each year group in reading.
Children will read to an adult, in school, each week. Children who need extra support will be listened to more frequently. In KS2 children are encouraged to read multiple times across the day to adults through a range of lessons, including; writing, geography, history, science and RE lessons.
Reading at home is an essential part of learning to read. Each child has an appropriately levelled reading book and a reading record. These are sent home daily. To ensure children are enthused about reading, those on Accelerated Reader they may choose which book they read from their allocated book band. Children are encouraged to read at home and rewarded through incentives developed within each class.
Reading with your child can support them in developing a love of reading. The OU have come up with guides and videos to support parents with this.
Reading for Pleasure
At Blackhall Primary School, we encourage reading for pleasure. Every classroom has an engaging reading area, including books matching both the ability and interests of the children. Classes also have access to a well-stocked, school library.
Staff nurture a love for books through enthusiasm and enjoyment, promoting wonder and curiosity while exploring a new book. We plan for regular opportunities throughout the year focussing on books, for example World Book Day, Roald Dahl Day and World Poetry Day. Books are used to enhance our curriculum in all subjects. Classrooms are updated termly, ensuring children access a range of subject based books. For example: Science, Geography, History, RE. Additional to this, adults share stories daily within their classes. In Key Stage 2, classes enjoy reading a class novel.
In addition, we also have a list of suggested high-quality reading books for each year group called our ‘Recommended Readers’. These books have been carefully selected for children to read at home and span across different genres and include a range of topics. We highly encourage our children to read frequently at home and we record any home reading in our reading records.
Please view our ‘Recommended Readers’ below. If you would like further suggestions of books for your children to read at home, please contact the class teacher.