Our teaching of English includes phonics, reading, writing, handwriting and EGPS (English, punctuation, grammar and spelling).
Success in reading underpins success in all subjects. Established readers have access to the riches of the curriculum and develop a love of reading that lasts with them a lifetime. Therefore, it is paramount that we have a clear and robust method of teaching reading to all children. Reading is multidimensional and draws on knowledge and experience, both personal and academic. The different strands of our reading provision, though interlinked, specifically target different dimensions of reading. Our reading spine ensures all children experience powerful texts across the curriculum.
Phonics: A robust programme of systematic synthetic phonics (SSP, or just ‘phonics’) is followed from the moment children enter school to the point at which they can read and spell fluently. Children learn about the link between letters and letter patterns, and the sounds they make. At Allerton Bywater, we follow the 'Read, Write, Inc.' All children are assessed in phonics through school until the point where they are proficient as readers and as spellers. Where a child’s progress in phonics is slower, or where there are gaps, interventions and specially arranged first-wave teaching ensure that all children leave school with the strongest phonic strategies possible.
Whole Class Teaching (Y2-6): Reading is taught discretely in thirty-minute reading lesson either four or five times per week. In years three to six, and in years two where appropriate, the key skills of reading are developed through whole-class lessons exploring beautiful, rich and authentic texts. Staff have carefully constructed a reading spine with texts for whole-class reading lessons that are pitched slightly above the independent reading ability of the children, offering challenge, opportunities to experience more difficult texts and to read forensically. Across the course of the school year, children systematically access a wide range of literature: contemporary fiction, heritage fiction, picture books, novels, non-fiction texts and poetry. Some of these texts may link to the children’s creative theme work; many may not.
Class Readers: Class reading sessions (the last fifteen minutes of each day) involve children accessing texts in a sustained reading session. Children then reflect on what has happened in their story so far before the teacher models the reading of an exciting, emotive or profound story. In EYFS and KS1, where stories are much shorter, a ‘repeated reader’ model ensures children develop familiarity and love of a range of stories. Children read and appreciate a quality, short story over the course of a week. This may mean that the story is read several times in succession. Children are encouraged to join in, take part and retell the story. Over several weeks, a bank of stories will have been learnt and loved. They are kept in a special box in the classroom for children to access at will. Every half term, the class will explore again the books that they have collected in their repeated reader boxes, ensuring that the arcs of fantastic stories are committed to memory.
Reading Across The Curriculum: Teachers provide quality literature across the curriculum so that children develop the habit of reading to learn. Children should access texts that help facilitate understanding of key topics and spark curricular interests.
For more information about the Reading curriculum, please speak to Mrs Bigland or Mr Asquith.