Reading at Rivelin
At Rivelin Primary, reading is at the core of our curriculum. Every day, children are presented with many opportunities to read, be read to and explore the wonder of books. Our school is determined that every pupil will learn to read, regardless of their background, needs or abilities. All pupils, including make sufficient progress to meet or exceed age related expectations.
At Rivelin Primary, we follow the National Curriculum, Early Years Framework and Reading Framework to ensure our children become fluent readers by the time they leave primary school. We use Little Wandle Phonics Scheme to teach phonics to support pupils’ word reading. We teach language comprehension through our Novel Study English curriculum and guided reading lessons daily.
In order to support our pupils’ early reading, all children accessing phonics teaching are given a reading book which is specifically matched to their reading / phonic attainment to read both in school and practice at home. This builds pupils’ fluency and accuracy in decoding.
After pupils complete the Little Wandle phonics programme, they choose age-appropriate books, matched to their reading ability from the rich array we have on offer in school.
Children in Year 2 through to Year 6 complete whole class reading sessions four times per week: pupils have their own copy of an age-appropriate book to develop fluency and accuracy in reading initially, before developing prosody, intonation and expression for reading. Children then develop their reading comprehension through the careful modelling and questioning led by adults in the classroom.
Through teacher’s choice of high quality texts, we intend to develop a love of reading and allow children to recognise the pleasure they can get from reading, develop pupils’ imagination and perseverance to read at length for enjoyment.
Reading is woven into all aspects of the curriculum: subject leaders have a range of ‘recommended reads’ available in each class based on subjects and specific content, ‘talk assemblies’ based on high quality literature take place every week, and daily whole class reading sessions take place within classrooms. With this, we aim to provide children with a well-rounded understanding that reading provides opportunities to discover new knowledge, revisit prior knowledge and understand more about what they learn across all subject matters.
In Nursery at Rivelin, children begin by exploring books without words, gaining meaning from what they can see in the pictures and using these to help them to tell the story. They also share lots of books together with adults in school, talking about different stories and characters, as well as learning many rhymes and poems.
As children move into Reception, they will begin to read decodable books, linked to their current Phonics knowledge. These are part of our ‘Little Wandle’ Phonics scheme and will allow children to continue to develop the Phonics skills they are learning within their lessons. For more information about the ‘Little Wandle’ Phonics programme, please see the ‘Phonics’ subject page of the Rivelin website.
While reading these books, children will be encouraged to think about what is happening within the story, as well as beginning to answer questions about what they have read.
Throughout their time in Reception, children will also share many books with adults and other children, as we would love them to develop a joy for reading that will encourage them to be keen readers in the future!
Key Stage 1
In Key Stage 1, children will continue to develop and consolidate their Phonics skills using the ‘Little Wandle’ decodable books. These will be matched to their growing Phonics knowledge.
When children have developed a strong enough Phonics knowledge that they are reading more fluently and do not need to sound out as many words, they will move onto our reading stages. The majority of these books are from the ‘Oxford Reading Tree’ scheme and show good progression throughout the stages, allowing the children to continue to develop their reading skills and fluency.
In Year 1, children will also take part in group Guided Reading sessions with an adult, where they share a book together from our ‘Little Wandle’ programme. The group will then discuss the story together, thinking about what has happened within it, how characters might be feeling or why they may have acted as they did. This is a very important time for the children to develop their comprehension skills with an adult.
Whole Class Reading
Whole class reading lessons take place from Year 2 to Year 6 four times per week. A book or poem is chosen, based on curriculum content and based on cohort interests at an age-appropriate level for every year group. Each session of reading begins with introduction of new vocabulary with corresponding definitions: this vocabulary comes directly from the text children will prepare to read, to allow for depth of understanding to be achieved. Sessions continue with a recap and review of previous reading, focused around revisiting key themes, events, characters and discussions about the author’s intentions. Adults then model their reading aloud to the children, demonstrating high levels of fluency, accuracy and intonation, before children then ‘jump in’, prompting pupils to carefully follow the text as it is being read. Once modelled, pupils read in pairs, with one partner reading aloud and one partner following the text. Adults are listening for accuracy and fluency of the written word during this time.
As reading progresses through the course of the week, children are exposed to rapid retrieval questions which are built on through comprehension questions; children are supported through ‘thinking aloud’ approaches from adults whereby situation monitoring and comprehension modelling is delivered, supporting children to replicate these key skills to understand the text.
At Rivelin, we have different characters to represent the different comprehension skills that the children will be using to fully understand what they have read. These are the ‘Rivelin Reading Squad’ and are shown below.
Rivelin Reading Squad
Eric helps the children to understand the different vocabulary that has been used within a text. The children will use this skill to think about the meanings of different words, as well as identifying words of different types that have been used within the text, e.g. adjectives, adverbs, etc. As they move through school, children will begin to think about the importance of word choices, explaining why an author may have picked a specific word.
Rita helps the children to find and retrieve answers to questions within a text. They will be encouraged to think about the main words within the question and scan for these within the text to find the relevant answers.
Peter helps the children to predict what they think might happen within a story. They will use clues from the front cover and title of the book to predict what it might be about, as well as using events they have already read about to predict what might happen next within a story.
Ingrid helps the children to infer information, using clues from the text alongside their own thinking to develop their ideas and answers to questions. These questions might involve thinking about why something has happened or how characters might be feeling.
Sally helps the children to develop their summarisation skills. These involve finding the main events or points within a text as well as explaining what the text has been about in a clear and succinct manner.
Casey helps the children to understand how information is organised within a text. The children will begin to consider what kind of text they are reading, as well as thinking about how the layout of it might be helpful to the reader.
Isaac helps the children to understand why the author has made certain choices within the text, for example why they have chosen a particular word to describe a character or event.
Conrad helps the children to develop their comparison skills, thinking how different parts of the text might differ from one another and why. The children may also begin to compare different texts they have read, thinking about the similarities and differences between them.
Teacher assessments identify children within KS2 who are behind in their phonic knowledge. Children are taught the phonic knowledge they are needed to catch up quickly through daily phonics sessions tailored to the needs of the children. Regular assessments inform accurate next steps in teaching and learning for children who need additional support.
Reading in the curriculum
Children take part in weekly comprehension quizzes to give teachers the opportunity to assess the children’s reading skills. It is here that pupils practise and apply key reading skills taught within guided reading sessions and develop a love for books and authors, ready to use these as a basis for their own compositions in writing.
All subject leaders across the academy have selected ‘recommended reads’ which are used in the classroom to promote children’s curiosity to read often and widely across the curriculum. These are kept in dedicated book boxes alongside a range of texts within reading areas.
Reading for pleasure and reading culture
Every class has a timetabled session to use the whole school library. During this time, children participate in Reading for Pleasure sessions. Teachers may choose to read a story to the whole class in the library to promote a love of reading.
Reading corners have been created across all classes, with a consistency in approach. Book boxes are rotated regularly to refresh the offer of texts to the children, with books arranged into genres and authors: this allows children to develop their own repertoire and opinions of preferred books and texts to enjoy.
After morning playtime, children come together as a whole group and are read to by an adult. Adults read a high quality pre-planned novel to the children every day, exposing children to language, content and texts they may otherwise refrain from reading.
Reading is at the core of our curriculum and children are provided the opportunities to become life-long readers and value the importance of reading in their everyday lives.
Through the innate approach to reading taken at Rivelin Primary, children read a wide range of books, often which support them in their understanding of concepts across the curriculum. The vast majority of children enter Key Stage Two as an independent reader, ready to be exposed to a rich menu of books on offer. The environment is adorned with high quality texts in classrooms, on corridors and in the whole school library to raise excitement and prevalence of reading into all our children.
Pupil voice and monitoring by the curriculum leader measures children’s enjoyment and pleasure for reading. As a result of the reading provision on place, children have a developed ability to use their phonic knowledge at their stage of development to decode and blend successfully, leading to fluency and accuracy in their reading.
Through the approach taken, children are developing their comprehension skills by revisiting skills through lessons, which enables them to know more, remember more and pupils achieve well in reading in summative and National statutory assessments.