Reading for pleasure is at the heart of our English curriculum; we want every child to leave Queen’s Manor with a life-long love of reading. All children will experience the pleasure of getting lost in a book and exploring different worlds through the rich, diverse and engaging texts that form the foundation of our English curriculum.
Supporting children to develop good language and literacy skills underpins educational success in all areas of the curriculum, builds future achievement and enriches lives. By the time children leave Queen’s Manor, we want them to be competent readers who can recommend books to their peers, enjoy reading a range of genres, including poetry, and participate in discussions about books, including evaluating an author’s use of language and the impact this can have on the reader. Overall, it is our aim to promote a real love of reading which will ensure that they continue to be life-long learners.
We have developed an ambitious curriculum from the EYFS to Year 6. Texts chosen are high quality and build on children’s language and reading skills. In EYFS and KS1 we place a strong emphasis on the teaching of phonics, so children quickly become fluent readers. As they progress through the school, we also develop comprehension knowledge so children leave primary school able to read and comprehend fluently.
In EYFS we share stories with children daily and develop a love of reading, encouraging them to retell and role-play their favourite stories. Children will be exposed to a range of texts – from traditional tales to nursery rhymes – which supports their oracy.
In KS1 they continue to read and hear a range of texts which become increasingly challenging. They receive daily phonics sessions, participate in comprehension sessions and read across the curriculum.
By the time pupils enter KS2 we expect them to have mastered phonics and will focus on developing their comprehension skills. The school has carefully designed a sequential reading curriculum which exposes children to increasingly difficult texts as they progress through the school.
All children are read to daily during story time. Texts are carefully chosen to engage the children, expose them to a wider range of literature and reflect their own realities. We are fortunate to have a well-stocked library which children visit regularly to choose a book to read for pleasure.
If your child is learning through the Little Wandle phonics scheme, they will bring home two types of reading book: a reading practice book and a sharing book. The reading practice book has been carefully matched to your child’s current reading level. If your child is reading it with little help, please don’t worry that it’s too easy – your child needs to develop fluency and confidence in reading. Listen to them read the book and remember to give them lots of praise – celebrate their success! If they can’t read a word, read it to them. In order to encourage your child to become a lifelong reader, it is important that they learn to read for pleasure. The sharing book is a book they have chosen for you to enjoy together. Please remember that you shouldn’t expect your child to read this alone. Read it to or with them. Discuss the pictures, enjoy the story, predict what might happen next, use different voices for the characters and explore the facts in a non-fiction book. The main thing is that you have fun! If your child gets stuck, a great prompt to use is: 'Say the sounds (pointing to each of the ‘sounds’ in the word) and read the word' (slide your finger along, under the whole word).
As a research-informed school, we have developed our own reading curriculum based on the ‘Power of Reading’ scheme. Our reading curriculum puts quality children’s literature at the heart of literacy learning and is built on years of research and best practice. Using high quality texts to teach reading, we help children to acquire a wide vocabulary, appreciate a rich literary heritage, explain their understanding clearly and develop the habit of reading widely. Our whole class approach to teaching reading means that all pupils read with the teacher, access more challenging texts and benefit from the teacher’s expert explanations, modelling, questioning and feedback.
To promote our love of reading, we have introduced a new reading initiative for Key Stages 1 and 2 – Starbooks – which is designed to encourage reading for pleasure. This is an optional initiative; children can choose to participate by reading books from a curated book list (‘Starbooks menu’) for their year group. Each menu contains a variety of books that have been specially selected, linked to Doug Lemov’s ‘5 Plagues’, to ensure that pupils are accessing a diverse range of text types. These books will be available for the children to borrow from the library.
In Key Stage 1, every time a child reads a book from the Starbooks menu, they can complete an activity from the reading grid. In Key Stage 2, each time a child reads a book from the Starbooks menu, they will receive a stamp on their Starbooks loyalty card. After completing five activities (KS1) or receiving six stamps (KS2), children will be invited to the library to share a story and enjoy a celebratory hot chocolate.