Holmes Chapel Primary School – Reading Intent
At Holmes Chapel Primary School, we recognise the value of English as a means of communicating through the elements of spoken language, reading and writing. We aim to promote high standards of language and literacy in our children by equipping them with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and develop their love of literature through widespread reading for pleasure and enjoyment.
Our overall aims are to ensure that pupils:
- Read easily, fluently and with good understanding
- Develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information
- Acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading
- Appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
- Use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas
We will support children to develop these skills and knowledge through:
- Sharing stories, songs and poems
- Asking and answering questions
- Small group guided reading and Inference Training
- 1:1 reading
- Daily systematic Phonics lessons (20 minutes each day) addressing the objectives in the Letters and Sounds document
- Reading for Pleasure
- Use of a number of reading schemes – we use several and organise the books into levels/book bands of similar difficulty. Our reading resources include books published by Oxford University Press, Ginn and Rigby Star. Each band is represented by a colour and children are regularly assessed to ensure that they progress to the next band as appropriate.
EYFS and Key Stage 1
Children encounter a range of reading learning opportunities in school to ensure that fundamental skills are securely in place.
Daily phonics sessions provide a very structured approach, children are taught in smaller groups and progress is assessed regularly. Whole class teaching also takes place and texts are often used as a stimulus for further English based activities. In Guided Reading sessions, pupils work in small, adult led groups to explore texts, building particularly on comprehension and early inference skills.
In addition pupils read regularly on a 1:1 basis to ensure both accuracy and understanding. Whilst this may be with a teacher or teaching assistant, we are fortunate in that we are supported by a committed team of volunteers comprising parents, grandparents and friends of the school.
Children are encouraged to read at home and generally take a book home each night. Whilst reading scheme (colour banded books) are used for this, each class also has its own 'mini library' in the form of a 'woodland basket'. These books cover a range of genres and levels, the emphasis being on enjoyment and sharing with parents and carers. Woodland baskets are rotated between classes on a half termly basis to ensure variety. Enjoying a class book at story time, remains a highlight of the school day for many, pupils and teachers alike!
Key Stage 2
As pupils progress through Key Stage 2 the emphasis switches from decoding skills to developing comprehension and inference skills.
Again, texts frequently provide a focal point for English work, often linking with ongoing topic work to develop a theme. In addition to whole class teaching, Guided Reading sessions continue. These enable children to develop the high levels of inference and understanding needed for Secondary school. Pupils also have the opportunity to explore and respond to text through follow up tasks and activities. There remains an expectation for children to read at home on a regular basis.
Throughout school, reading resources are regularly reviewed and updated. In addition to scheme books and woodland baskets, we also borrow from the Cheshire School Library service. The mobile library visits regularly and children are involved in choosing class collections. Each year in March we celebrate World Book Day, by enjoying different reading themed activities. We also host twice yearly book fairs which are really popular and well supported.