Reading gives learners full access to all curriculum subjects. The most important thing to remember when helping a child learn to read is it must be enjoyable and fun. At St Robert Southwell pupils are continually exposed to different texts, giving them the opportunity to find pleasure in reading. Our overriding aim is to help all pupils develop into strong, independent readers. Reading is taught individually, in guided and shared reading groups and as a whole class. Pupils have the opportunity to not only read to themselves and to an adult in the class, but also to an audience and for a purpose, such as following instructions. Exposing pupils to a range of diverse reading experiences will help them to become confident, independent readers.
As a school, we use reading schemes to support readers but it is equally important that pupils can read a range of texts. As pupils move into Year 3 they are encouraged to further develop their reading repertoire moving away from scaffolded texts, introducing reading material such as comics, recipe books, sports results in the newspaper, emails and websites about their school topics or personal interests they may have.
We believe that good readers become good writers and that the richness, depth and breadth of a pupil’s reading experience determines the writers they will become.
English is a core subject because it is a thread that runs through the whole of the curriculum. This journey begins in Reception with the learning of phonic sounds. Phonics is at the centre of all reading and writing and therefore remains an important skill throughout their primary school career.
Phonics is taught in EYFS & KS1 using Song of Sounds, supported by a range of practical methods, providing additional support for children where appropriate. We use a wide variety of reading materials, covering fiction and non-fiction, including the Oxford Reading Tree. More confident readers are able to choose from class readers, chapter books and a well-stocked library. We encourage children to read daily at home and this is monitored via a home-school reading diary.