Reading is key to the curriculum and a hugely important life skill so that is why reading at Greenland Community Primary School has an enormous emphasis put on it. As a school we aim to develop confident, articulate children who are able to communicate effectively through the written and spoken word – and relish the opportunity to read and write in a variety of contexts; we aim for all children to develop a love for reading and writing which will serve them well throughout their secondary education and adult life.
We use the National Curriculum as a basis for developing the children’s reading, writing, speaking and listening skills. The children undertake a daily dedicated English lesson. However, at Greenland Community Primary School, we see English teaching as something that must be, and is, embedded across all lessons and activities across the day.
There is also an emphasis on giving children the technical knowledge and language through which they can discuss and improve their work, helping them to become reflective and proactive learners. From Year 2, they are explicitly taught grammar terminology and spelling rules, and we have a strong emphasis on the home-school link to support spelling development.
Reading throughout the school
Children in our school spend lots of time reading. On entry the children are taught to read through a systematic and structured approach based around Read Write Inc Phonics.
From that initial starting point the children then go on to read a range of texts, both fiction and non-fiction, to give breadth and balance in developing their independent reading skills.
In addition, and to enable children to become confident readers with a love of reading, we have a variety of initiatives in place across the school:
In each class there are a set of quality classic and contemporary texts that are age appropriate for each phase throughout the school. They are shared with the children at story times and as ‘reading for pleasure’.
- Whole class reading comprehension – as the children develop their basic reading skills and become more fluent whole class lessons with a reading comprehension focus look at, for example, inference and deduction. These are teacher led lessons with peers supporting each other.
- Throughout the year they are regular events held to promote reading and foster a love of reading across our school community. These include: visits from celebrated authors, Summer reading competitions, Roald Dahl day, World Book Day to name but a few!
- Weekly reading assemblies are held in school each week.
- Teachers are seen in school as readers and read every day with their class at home time.
Accelerated Reader and Reading Plus
At Greenland we use Accelerated Reader as part of our approach to reading. The aim is that children in Years 3, 4, 5 and 6 all regularly borrow books from the library, take quizzes on them and progress through the reading scheme. The children all take a reading test to determine their reading ability at the beginning of each year. They are then given a ‘reading range’ and this tells them the area of the library that they can borrow books from. The range given is matched to their reading ability so that they choose books that they can read comfortably or provide more of a challenge. The scores children receive from the quizzes they take are monitored by class teachers. When they are regularly passing quizzes for the level they are on, the teacher gives them permission to move up a level,
We also use Reading Plus as a reading intervention – to give those children who may need an extra boost with their reading. Reading Plus is a reading program used by Year 5 and Year 6 pupils to develop fluency, vocabulary and comprehension.
Across the Key Stages, children are taught writing through a text based approach. Over the year, teachers choose a selection of engaging novels or non-fictions texts and plan units of work around them. The texts inspire a range of writing opportunities and throughout the unit children regularly write across a range of genres in response to the characters and events from the novel they are reading. This approach provides opportunities for children to appreciate and discuss a range of literature whilst reading and writing regularly for a purpose. It really engages the children and creates a buzz around their English work. Where appropriate, novels are linked to termly topics in order to immerse children fully into a cohesively planned unit of work. For example, children enjoying a topic linked to World War 2 may read Anne Frank’s Diary, write their own war related diary entries, write a persuasive speech to encourage civilians to ‘make do and mend’ and write a biography of Anne herself.
Look at the link below which detail the National Curriculum by Year Group for English (including spelling lists for each year).
If you require any more information about how we teach English in school then please do not hesitate to speak to your child’s class teacher or Miss Anne-Marie Lewis.