At Hollycroft Primary we strongly feel that a love and appreciation of reading should be embedded from an early age. We know that for children to become excellent writers they need to read and therefore we aim to engage the children with different genres of books and encourage them to read for pleasure. Children have access to a quality range of fiction and non-fiction books in each classroom and within our school library. High-quality authors are encouraged throughout our school.
An emphasis is placed on encouraging children to read high-quality children’s literature whilst developing a love of reading. Teachers read high-quality texts to their classes each day. This helps our pupils to develop their vocabulary as well as introducing them to unfamiliar ideas and concepts. It also gives pupils the opportunity to tackle longer or more challenging texts than they would be able to alone and models for them good intonation and expression.
A wide range of reading strategies are taught throughout school, including shared reading, guided reading and independent reading. Guided reading and comprehension sessions are used throughout the school from Foundation Stage to Year 6. In these sessions, children are encouraged to explore story plots, understand and learn new vocabulary, think about character motivation and the way writers look to inspire the imagination. In addition to this, children are taught comprehension strategies.
We aim to teach children to:
- Identify and discuss themes and conventions in and across a wide range of writing.
- Ask questions to improve their understanding.
- Draw inferences such as inferring characters’ feelings, thoughts and motives from their actions, and justifying inferences with evidence.
- Predict what might happen from the details stated and implied.
- Summarise the main ideas from more than one paragraph, identifying key details that support the main ideas.
- Identify how language, structure and presentation contribute to meaning.
- Discuss and evaluate how authors use language, including figurative language, considering the impact on the reader.
- Distinguish between statements of fact and opinion.
- Retrieve, record and present information
- Explain and discuss their understanding of what they have read.
- Provide reasoned justifications for their views.
We use the Oxford Reading Tree stages of reading to identify steps in children’s reading progress. The Oxford Reading Tree stages provide a consistent, progressive and challenging reading scheme throughout the school with children working from stages 1 through to 15/16 by the end of Year 4. Children in Years 5 and 6 will be ‘free readers’ who are encouraged to choose age-appropriate, high-quality texts; however, should children still require the support of the reading scheme this will continue. In addition to this, we use the Oxford Reading Buddy, an online resource and e-book library to further support children’s reading at home.
Children in Foundation Stage, Year 1 and Year 2 will also take home a fully decodable Phonics book each week. Whereas the Oxford Reading books encourage children to have a love of reading, develop their comprehension skills and explore a range of rich vocabulary, the Phonics books aim to improve the children’s understanding of phonics by directly linking to the learning in the classroom.