Reading at Rickley Park

“Reading…feeds the pupils’ imagination and opens up a treasure house of wonder and joy for curious young minds”                (National Curriculum, 2014)

Teaching of Reading

Phonics: Initially children learn to read by learning the individual sounds that letters (or groups of letters) make and then merge them together to read words. 

At Rickley Park Primary School our pupils learn to read and write using a systematic synthetic phonic approach. Following the Letters and Sounds programme we aim to equip children with the tools needed to decode and segment unfamiliar words so that they are able to read, write and spell with understanding, fluency, confidence and accuracy.

We aim to: 

  • Teach children aural discrimination, phonemic awareness and rhyme awareness in order to encourage good spelling.
  • Encourage children to segment to spell and blend to read.
  • Encourage repetition and consolidation, so that spelling becomes automatic.

Click here to download the Rickley Park Primary School Phonics Overview (Appendix 2 of English Policy, November 2015)

Click here for further details about Phonics at Rickley Park.

Shared Reading: Shared reading involves the teacher modelling the reading process to the whole class as an expert reader, providing a high level of support. Our approach to English teaching at Rickley Park provides frequent opportunities for shared reading within the English lesson to develop the children’s understanding of the text as well as practising using expression and intonation when reading aloud.

Guided Reading: The focus of guided reading is to work with a small group to develop the children’s understanding of reading through a variety of text types (such as: stories, instructions, newspapers, leaflets etc.). Guided reading also focuses on developing children’s understanding of how to read as a reader as well as a writer, modelling text selection, fostering a love of reading and ultimately aims to facilitate independent readers.

Groups follow a carousel-style approach to guided reading, whereby the children are set into ability groups and will have at least one focused reading session with an adult per week. The adult leading the session will carefully select a text to focus upon which is of a suitable level of challenge for the children. When not reading with an adult, children continue their reading development through a range of activities, such as: comprehension and topic/ theme reading (linked to their Foundation topic). 

Individual Reading: Children are heard read by their class teacher at least every fortnight. A comment is recorded in the children’s Reading Journal.

Rickley Park Reading Spine

At Rickley Park Primary School, we believe that all children should be immersed in high quality literature. Our philosophy encompasses building upon the children’s reading experiences each year by using this progressive reading spine to challenge and foster a love for reading. The Rickley Park Primary School Reading Spine ensures that children are exposed to a wealth of high-quality books which champion our literary heritage yet also encompass a diverse range of author, genre, culture and length.

It is not intended that children read these books at home - we want them to enjoy hearing the story for the first time with their peers - but it does allow parents to consider other books which would compliment the spine (perhaps by the same author) to increase the diversity of books that their child reads at home.  Thank you for respecting this request and not spoiling the learning for your child.  However, if there are books in previous years that your child has missed - you can, of course, catch them up on those!

Click here to download a copy of the Rickley Park Reading Spine

Reading at Home

As part of our Homework Policy, all children are expected to read at home 5 times a week:

  • Reception = 5 x 5 mins per week 
  • Years 1 & 2 = 5 x 10 mins per week 
  • Years 3 & 4 = 5 x 15 mins per week 
  • Years 5 & 6 = 5 x 20 mins per week 

This is crucial reinforcement and practice of the skills that they have developed in school.  

Children start by working through our structured reading scheme (Oxford Reading Tree) and then, when they are ready (usually at some point during Year 3), they will move on to an Accelerated Reader book from our school library (click here for more information about Accelerated Reader).

As a school we promote and value reading as an enjoyable activity and also as a life skill. Children are also timetabled to visit the library on a weekly basis to select a "free choice‟ reading book; this is in addition to either a reading scheme book (Oxford Reading Tree) or an Accelerated Reader book. 


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