Phonics and Reading
At Swanland Primary School we endeavor to promote reading for pleasure as well as embedding a thorough understanding of the synthetic phonics process. We particularly emphasise the importance of books and literature in enabling children to become confident, happy and enthusiastic readers and writers, with all the benefits this brings. We are continuing to develop an ethos and an environment that excites, enthuses, inspires and values reading.
The teaching of phonics is undertaken comprehensively, ensuring that pupils are able to tackle the reading of unfamiliar words. In Early Years Foundation Stage 2 and Year 1 , 'Letters and Sounds’ is used as a systemic approach to teach the early stages of reading with elements of resources such as 'Jolly Phonics' and ‘Phonics Play’ used to support the teaching. As the children progress through the ‘Letters and Sounds’ programme, they begin to focus on common exception words in both their reading and writing. Year 2 builds on this spelling knowledge and children begin the ‘No Nonsense Spelling’ Programme for pupils in Year 2 – 6. Intervention groups, Precision Teaching and Lexia are in place to support the children that need a little extra time to consolidate their learning. As children become competent in their phonic knowledge they are able to apply this understanding to reading from the school reading scheme, which includes ‘Oxford Reading Tree’, ‘Ginn’ and Rigby Star books.
Reading for Pleasure
Reading for pleasure is encouraged by all pupils in all classes both at home and at school. In order to encourage reading we are setting the pupils a reading challenge – the aim is to read as many age appropriate books as possible with stepping stones along the way! Pupils are asked to start at the bottom of a reading ladder and complete a reading journey – certificate of merit is to be awarded in the school assembly.
All classes have the chance to visit an age appropriate library approximately every two weeks. The aim of this is to support and encourage reading for pleasure.
We also celebrate World Book Day and have an end of year Book Brain competition.
Each year group has a class text or author of the term with access to fiction and non-fiction texts. Reading is celebrated with award schemes put in place to encourage reading. Each week children complete comprehension tasks either through guided reading sessions or whole class teaching. A range of resources are used to support the teaching of reading comprehension. Key Stage 1 classes have daily story time and Key Stage 2 classes endeavor to have whole class reading sessions 2-3 times per week. Reading comprehension is taught weekly through whole class sessions and guided reading session. In these sessions the skills for comprehension are taught and also include analysis of texts, investigation into unknown words.
Focused guided reading sessions take place across the school in a progressive way. Guided reading takes place from Year 1 upwards where small group reading sessions take place. During these sessions children are encouraged to look at the language in the book, identify any unknown words and phrases and magpie ideas to include in their own writing. Children are also asked to answer questions about what they have read to check for a deeper understanding.
The Home School reading scheme ensures children have access to banded books. This book is for the teacher to monitor reading and for the child to enjoy reading at home with their parents. Children are also encouraged to read other books from the library or home to supplement and widen their reading. When a child has read at home, parents are asked to record that they have read. Staff track any children not reading regularly at home and put incentives in place to encourage more home reading. In Key Stage One, children will have access to two books per week and in Key Stage Two children are able to change their book independently upon request. Records are kept on the books read.