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The Teaching of Reading

  • It is our aim to develop enthusiastic and confident readers who can understand a wide range of texts.
  • Children will read for interest, information and enjoyment when accessing all areas of the curriculum.


Children should:

Experience exciting and enthralling books as soon as they enter our school.

  • Know how well they are achieving in reading and be supported towards their targets.
  • Experience text through interactive challenging activities including the experience of theatre.
  • Be challenged to develop their reading potential and aim high in the complexity of text and stamina of their reading.
  • Read in a stimulating, happy and secure environment.
  • Access high quality reading resources in classrooms, libraries and using ICT.
  • Experience a variety of creative teaching methods and approaches to develop their comprehension of text.
  • Be supported by a proactive reading partnership of home, school and parish.


Foundation Stage:

Reading opportunities are given on a daily basis.  A wide range of approaches are used to provide first hand experiences for the children.  Teachers read aloud in a way that excites and engages them, introducing new ideas, concepts and vocabulary to stimulate their imagination and expand cognitive development. Children are read to daily which helps them develop language and listening skills and prepares them to understand the written word.

The teaching of synthetic phonics begins in nursery where children learn to discriminate between sounds in the environment through the use of rhyme, rhythm and alliteration. The foundation stage is a ‘language-rich’ environment that focuses on developing children's speaking and listening skills to lay the foundations of phonics. The emphasis is to get children attuned to the sounds around them and ready to begin developing oral blending and segmenting skills.

 Phonics is taught daily using ‘The Bug Club Phonics’ teaching programme which is DfE approved. The programme aims to develop confident and motivated readers and captures children’s imagination to nurture lifelong readers. The programme is fast paced and backed up by daily revision of past teaching. Each lesson consists of effective, high quality lessons. 

The school has clear expectations of pupils’ phonics term-by–term, from Nursery to Year 2. (Please see Phonics Long term)

The teacher reads with the child and encourages reading to take place at home. Each classroom has an attractive reading area with comfortable seating and a quality selection of engaging and appropriate books available.


Key Stage One:

Discrete, daily phonics teaching continues into KS1. We support the children's application of phonics by matching their school and home reading books to the sounds that they have previously learnt in class to increase reading fluency. The children use Bug Club Phonics readers which fully support the daily phonics lesson.

It is expected that children read at home with an adult at least three times a week. In Year 2, children have the opportunity to join the accelerated reader scheme. Pupils will also visit the school library on a weekly basis. They will be encouraged to choose a book from the school library section which can be shared at home for enjoyment.

During shared and guided reading, phonics work is reinforced in the context of real texts. The English national curriculum provides a wide range of text types.  Writing activities follow on from shared reading with a balance of reading and writing.

Each classroom in Key Stage One has an attractive Reading area with comfortable seating and a quality selection of engaging and appropriate books available.


Reading Schemes: Within the foundation stage and Key Stage One, we use a range of published reading schemes.


  • Phonics bug
  • Oxford Reading tree: Songbirds, Floppy’s phonics, Project X, traditional tales
  • Big Cat Collins




Key Stage Two:

Children use the accelerated reader scheme, which is a national program used to assist in the improvement of pupils’ reading abilities and their comprehension of what they read. Accelerated Reader matches book choices (and quizzes) to meet their individual reading needs. Members of the Senior Leadership team and class teachers closely monitor the achievement in the quizzes to ensure the children are reading at an appropriate level. Where appropriate children are heard read by an adult in school.  It is expected that parents also hear their children read at least three times a week and sign in their planners.

Pupils will also visit the school library on a weekly basis. They will be encouraged to choose a book from the school library section which can be shared at home for enjoyment. 

We have recently established close links with the local library in Biddulph,  working together to allow every child in school the opportunity to visit the library with their peers, listen to a story and then choose a book to take home.

Pupils who need to develop their phonetic awareness will receive a phonics session three times a week and be in a group according to the phase that they require.


Reading Schemes Children at Our Lady of Grace are exposed to high quality literature in every year group. Each class has a class novel, which is shared on a daily basis and changed half- termly. Each classroom has an attractive reading area with comfortable seating and a quality selection of engaging and appropriate books available in order to develop children’s reading for pleasure and promote positive attitudes towards reading.


Furthermore, the range of books used is vast and matches the reading range that is needed to meet the children’s reading level using the Accelerated reader scheme.


Guided Reading

The purpose of a Guided Reading session is to deepen children’s inferential, retrieval and decoding skills. Children are placed into similar ability groups, which are reviewed on a regular basis. The text chosen for a given guided reading session challenges the group in terms of meaning and word difficulty.

Guided reading takes place outside of the standard English lesson. There is a balance of fiction, non-fiction and poetry texts chosen for guided reading sessions. Some texts may link with wider genres being taught in English or other areas of the curriculum so that children are able to develop their love of reading, reading skills and knowledge across a range of subject areas.


To motivate the children even further  with their reading we have an author, Jasper Cooper, visiting us he will deliver age appropriate workshops to the whole school and give them an insight of how he became an author and what his day as an author is like.


In conjunction with his visit we are also running a creative  writing  competition for KS2 children giving them the opportunity to write for a real purpose and deliver to an audience.