Reading is one of the most fundamental skills your child will learn in primary school.

We teach children to read through a variety of whole class, group and individual activities every day, activities include:

  • reading stories and talking about the characters, plot or setting
  • acting out stories through drama or role play
  • using information books to support work in history, science or geography
  • listening to children read individually or in a small group
  • daily phonics lessons until children know all their sounds
  • recognising high frequency words (key words)

 For more information about how we teach phonics, click here

Reading Stars

Children take a reading book home every day, with a reading record book.  Please listen to them every day, or as often as possible each week, and sign your child's reading record.

Children who read 3 times a week at home are a "reading star!!"

We have a class competition to see which class has the highest percentage of reading stars and children are also rewarded with the chance to win a book prize!

Reading Scheme Book Bands

We use books from a wide range of different phonic based reading schemes throughout school. In Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 we use 'Books for Bags' as part of our RWI programme. The core Read Write Inc. Phonics storybooks are the best option for home reading: children read the story three times at school and read it again at home to build their confidence and fluency. Book Bag books are supplementary books for children to practise sound-blending. Each book corresponds with a core Read Write Inc. Phonics book. It has a similar theme and the same graphemes. For example, the Book Bag Book Red Hat Rob builds on the core storybook, Black Hat Bob. We believe this gives children plenty of choice within a carefully graduated structure of books of increasing difficulty. The reading books at school are colour coded according to their level of difficulty. If you think your child’s book is too hard or too easy, please inform their class teacher.

Key Words

There are 100 words in English that make up the majority of what we read, they are known as "little" words like "the, is, and".  

To become a fluent reader, children need to be able to recognise these words instantly, without having to sound them out. Children work through 12 sets of these "key words" until they can recognise them all by sight.  Your child will have a sheet of key words to learn - please help them by reading through them together for a few minutes every day.

Is your child a beginning reader?

Below is a list of suggestions to develop the skills of reading:

Listening to your child read little and often is better than once a week for a long session, sit together in a peaceful area so your child can concentrate and enjoy the book.

First of all look at the front cover and title. Question about the cover, what do you think will happen? Who do you think the characters are? Have you read a story similar before?

Throughout the story, look at the pictures and question the story - talk about it - whats happened?, why?, what do you think will happen next? Where do you think they are? What are they doing there?

If they struggle or make a mistake — don’t jump in straight away, allow time for the child to correct it themselves and intervene when needed.

Once you have finished reading the story together, re cap events of the story.

For further ideas on developing early reading skills, you could try...

  • Look at the first letter, can you think of a word that would make sense starting with
  • Look at the picture… What is the girl doing?
  • Can you sound it out? (e.g. m a t...mat.)
  • Re-tell a story by themselves

Is your child an independent reader? They will still need your help...

When children get to the stage of being able to read a book on their own, parents sometimes wonder what they can do to help.  Below are some ideas:

  • Ask your child to read a short section aloud. Encourage the use of expression.
  • Are they stopping at full stops and pausing at the commas.
  • Encourage your child to ask you for help when they get to a long or tricky word.   
  • Help them to sound out long words by breaking them up into smaller chunks (syllables).

Ask questions to check understanding text:

  • Who's your favourite character, why?
  • What sort of text/story is it?
  • What's happening in this chapter?  What do you think the character will do next?"
  • How do you think it will end?"
  • Is the ending what you expected?  Why / why not?"
  • What do you think this line means?"

Non Fiction texts:

There are new skills to develop when reading non-fiction (information books or texts) such as:

  • Using a contents page or index
  • Using the glossary
  • Being able to skim a text to get the main idea of what it is about
  • Scanning a text to find a particular piece of information.


Ten top tips for reading stories to your child

  1. Make reading to your child feel like a treat. Introduce each new book with excitement.
  2. Make it a special quiet time and cuddle up so both of you can see the book.
  3. Show curiosity in what you’re going to read: Oh no! I think Arthur is going to get even angrier now.
  4. Read the whole story the first time through without stopping too much. If you think your child might not understand something, model an explanation: Oh I think what’s happening here is that…
  5. Chat about the story: I wonder why he did that? Oh no, I hope she’s not going to… I wouldn’t have done that, would you?
  6. Avoid asking questions to test what your child remembers.
  7. Link stories to your own experiences (e.g. This reminds me of…)
  8. Read favourite stories over and over again. Get your child to join in with the bits they know.
  9. Read with enthusiasm. Don’t be embarrassed to try out different voices. Your child will love it!
  10. Read with enjoyment. If you’re not enjoying it, your child won’t.



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