Our ambition is for every child to leave St Clare’s as a confident reader who enjoys reading.
This process begins as soon as the children join us in the Early Years Foundation Stage where phonics is taught using the Little Wandle scheme. This continues into Year 1 with additional interventions for those who need it continuing into Year 2 and Key Stage 2.
This is our long term phonics plan:
Every child has a phonics lesson every day, with interventions in place for those needing additional support. Every child also has three reading sessions a week focusing on decoding, prosody and comprehension.
We encourage our parents to support their child at home with learning to decode and offer the following resources to help them: For parents | Letters and Sounds (littlewandlelettersandsounds.org.uk)
As children progress beyond phonics, the focus is on comprehension. PM Benchmarking is used to assess the children’s ability to decode and comprehend a text with a book band colour being allocated accordingly. Children then have a wide range of fiction and non-fiction books within that book band to choose from.
In addition, teachers read to their class every day, with children able to vote for their choice of book. There is a well-stocked book corner in every classroom which children can access during the day. Books are rotated by the pupil librarians in line with topics being taught and pupil interests.
Every child visits the school library every week and can choose to take out any book which interests them – we have 5500 books so there is plenty of choice (this is in addition to their phonics book or banded book)! Children can also access the library catalogue from home and search for books by topic, title or author. We also walk the children down to Coalville Library once a term and encourage parents to get their child a library card so that they can check out a book whilst they are there. 15% of our children completed the Summer Reading Challenge in 2023!
Books are everywhere in our school – in every corridor you will see bookshelves and book displays. Even outside, we have book boxes that children can access at lunchtimes!
Every term, children in Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 undertake a novel study. They read a whole book cover to cover and thoroughly dissect it. We have invested in half class sets of books for all of these units of work, meaning that children get to read along and have the physical book in front of them. That’s 18 novel studies that children undertake throughout their time with us ranging from picture books to modern classics across different genres, settings, authors and time periods. Pupils also study poetry every term too!
Finally, we have special reading events throughout the year. We have recently been visited by a professional story teller and every year we have a theme for World Book Day based on classics such as Shakespeare’s A Midsummer’s Night Dream, Alice in Wonderland and The Jungle Book and we always have a dance or drama workshop to fully immerse the children in the story.
We are a reading school!