Reading is the cornerstone of all education, we firmly believe that a passion for reading, developed early in life is the way forwards for children and opens up new worlds and a creative imagination.
We have worked closely with Hampshire Library Service in the last few years to broaden our offer and this year, are focusing on ensuring our reading ‘diet’ includes multicultural and diverse texts that represent the whole of our population both in and out of school. This is in line with our school development plan priorities.
We are working with our local English Hub to develop a reading for pleasure curriculum also in 2022-23. We are exploring graphic novels, classics and much more besides. We are participating in a reading for pleasure research project through the Hub to help lend our findings and thinking to other schools who may also be going through or about to embark on a similar process.
We have created recommended reading for pleasure lists for all children from years 1-6 which can be found below. These are books that are new and old, classics and non-fiction, picture books and poetry that will inspire and ignite a passion for reading.
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3||Year 4||Year 5||Year 6|
In October 2022, we adopted Little Wandle Letters & Sounds (revised) scheme to teach phonics to our children and develop early readers and spellers. Systematic, synthetic phonics is the method used to start all children in our school with reading.
We are implementing the early games and sound discrimination work in pre-school too so that the transition through is seamless and children have high confidence in tackling words and sounds they don’t know.
Our guided reading sessions for Years R and 1 also follow the Little Wandle scheme and for the first half of this academic year, Year 2 will also be following the scheme for reading to ensure they have the required fluency to help them gain confidence and delight in reading anything they set their minds to.
As children build their confidence with the decodable books, they are also bulding their sense of adventure and ability to get lost in new and different worlds through the reading for pleasure element of our reading ‘diet’ – reading is as much about fun and finding out as it is about phonics – phonics is the means to the end.
The next step on from phonics but learnt at the same time! 26 letters, on their own or combined can make 144 sounds – that’s a mammoth journey for our children but we begin small and grow and the children grow with us. Weekly spelling journals, personalised lists and words learnt alongside reading all help to cement children’s knowledge and understanding of our complex spelling system. If you require any support with your child’s spelling, please see their class teacher who will be more than happy to give you some ideas.
Children in KS2 follow Jane Considine’s ‘Super Spelling’ scheme which introduces them to rules, patterns and highlights the ‘magic’ in spelling. It demystifies spelling patterns and encourages children to make links between similarly spelt words so that they become more spelling aware.
Of course, not all children find spelling and reading easy first time. At the beginning of Year R, every child is screened on the Government approved NELI programme which captures early speech and language issues – support programmes follow for those that need them. We then undertake the ‘DEST’ (Dyslexia Early Screening Test) for all our Year R children at the end of their Year R year to catch any early signs that a child might struggle in different ways.
We use Dyslexia Gold and Units of Sound programmes to support language, spelling and reading difficulties as children move through the school so that no child falls behind and their needs are met at all times.