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Arbor 0116 2302800

Aiming High and Caring for Everyone.

Enabling children to flourish and succeed


Reading Intent Video



‘Both decoding (the ability to translate written words into the sounds of spoken language) and comprehension (the ability to understand the meaning of the language being read) skills are necessary for confident and competent reading, but neither is sufficient on its own.’ 

EEF Research: Improving Literacy in Key Stage One, published 4th September 2021



Our curriculum has reading at its core and is driven by the need for our children to develop respect, initiative, and a healthy lifestyle as well as to understand the possibilities within their community and of the world in which they live.


Each class has a selection of quality texts that are used as ‘class texts’ throughout the year.  These have been chosen for a number of reasons: to promote and celebrate diversity, for enjoyment, to introduce classic literature and to enrich children’s access to high quality vocabulary and language structures.  These texts are read to the children and they respond to them during some of their reading workshop sessions.


The teaching of reading begins as soon as children start at our school.  We teach a rigorous phonics programme using the Read Write Inc.  Our phonics programme commences promptly once our youngest children have completed their baseline assessments- it is very important to us that they get off to a flying start.  After the initial teaching of ‘Set 1 Sounds’ children are assessed and grouped.  Children are taught in ability groups throughout Early Years and Key Stage One and so are learning at their own level enabling us to accelerate progress.  Our groups are fluid and enable us to regularly assess and review our children’s progress. We assess our children at least half termly, in the Autumn it will be more. If a child/ group of children falls behind, they are given intervention. No time is lost for assessment.  In Key Stage 2, where children are still needing to access the RWI programme, they are taught in smaller groups- again at their level- and are assessed regularly.


Phonics is taught daily, for 30 to 40 minutes, and follows the key principles of pace, passion, participation and praise.  Each session focuses on a phoneme and develops into a variety of reading and writing activities that build on children’s prior knowledge and gives them lots of opportunities to apply their skills. In every session children read/ segment & blend/ write sounds & tricky words.  As soon as they have learnt to blend, they read a text or book in each session. Most groups will use one reading book for the whole week to give them the opportunity to develop their reading fluency as well as their phonetic awareness, this is sent home (photocopiable).  The children also receive a ‘Book Bag’ phonics book matched to their phonic stage- once a week.  As well as learning new phonemes and graphemes during their phonics sessions, children will be given the chance to develop their comprehension and inference skills through discussion about their text.


It is extremely important to us that phonics is one tool within our toolkit for reading and so we place a lot of importance on teaching a range of ‘early reading strategies’ and work hard to ensure that children are reading for meaning.  The importance of honing a range strategies for reading, and the understanding of what is being read, is shown in ‘Scarborough’s Reading Rope’.  As well as daily phonics teaching, our pupils are taught other reading skills such as prediction, inference and sequencing- all of which play an integral role in creating successful readers who enjoy reading; this is done during our reading workshops.

Reading workshops happen four times per week and enable teachers across the school to deliver quality guided reading sessions- focused on supporting children to develop a rich knowledge of reading strategies. As EEF research suggests that the best approach to teaching reading is through a variety of strategies, our children receive a whole class reading session each week.  Children will all have at least one guided reading session per week with targeted children receiving further intervention where the need is identified.   Whilst the adults deliver these small group sessions, other ‘groups’ of children complete various reading tasks (adapted to the children’s level/need) to scaffold and support their learning further.  Our teachers have regular INSET to support their own professional development and to ensure that a consistent approach is used across the school.


Where children are working below the expected standard, they will receive interventions.  These children will be identified in a number of ways: through pupil progress meetings; in discussions with teachers; from analysing data and other assessment tools.  Children who are working 2 or more years below their age expected level will all receive 1:1 daily reading opportunities with skilled staff including teachers, HLTAs and TAs.  All children who are less than 2 years below but are not yet meeting their age related expectation will receive an extra guided reading session per week.

EYFS / KS1 Pre-Segmenting & Blending

Book 1 


Sound / high frequency words Key Rings

Book 2


A book to share at home with a grown up. Talk about characters, themes, plot. Use this book to support initial sounds.

Sound / word keyrings

High frequency words

Children will have a book chosen to share with an adult. This book will enable the adult to model reading and support the learning of initial sounds. 


EYFS / KS1 at PM Benchmarking level 1+ still accessing phonics sessions

Book 1



PHONICS 'book bag' READER or photocopiable ditty.





Children will have a book chosen for enjoyment - they can choose a book from our selection in the library or in the classroom book corner to share with their adults at home. Your child will have a reading book / ditty matched to their phonics stage: these books will incorporate sounds / different graphemes from their current stage of learning. This book is your child's Read Write Inc. familiar read - it is the 'book' they have been working on and using all week in their lessons!A PM Benchmarked levelled book will be brought home - where they encounter a sound not yet taught, these should be given. 


KS1 and KS2 on PM Benchmark books - on spelling programme



Book 2 


Children will have a book chosen for enjoyment - they can choose a book from our selection in the library or in the classroom book corner to share with their adults at home. A PM Benchmarked levelled book will be brought home - where they encounter a sound not yet taught, these should be given.