At Green Park we believe that the teaching of reading is integral to a child’s understanding and appreciation of the world around them; a platform that allows our children to see beyond what they know, share in cultural experiences and develop the vocabulary they need to effectively express themselves. Our reading curriculum strives to foster a lifelong love of reading. We cultivate the behaviours that they will need to be discerning readers as they read frequently and widely using self-regulation strategies and discuss what they read. This curriculum is delivered through synthetic phonics, a linked approach to shared and whole class reading, home reading, reading across the curriculum, regular opportunities for independent reading and hearing quality texts read aloud every day. All of these are essential components as they offer the range of opportunities needed to develop fluent, enthusiastic and critical readers.
It is important that children are motivated to read at home regularly; when their reading opportunities increase, so does their fluency and stamina which in turn increases their enjoyment of reading. Therefore, the link between children’s motivation to read and reading for pleasure is reciprocal. Furthermore, we know that reading pleasure is beneficial not only for not only reading outcomes, but for wider learning enjoyment and mental wellbeing. Thus, we work hard to foster a love of independent reading and build communities of engaged readers. We understand the significance of parents and carers in supporting their children to develop both word reading and comprehension skills so we endeavour to build a home-school partnership which enables parents and carers to have the confidence to support their children with reading at home.
Reading is at the very heart of our curriculum. We are committed to promoting a love for reading and not only giving children opportunities to read in English lessons, but in the wider curriculum too.
The national curriculum for English aims to ensure that all 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, writing and spoken language
- appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
Early Reading and Phonics
We start by teaching phonics throughout the Foundation Stage and Key stage 1. At Green Park School we follow the Pearson Bug Club progression to help children learn which is based on the teaching and practising of key sounds which are then applied actively into reading to enable children to apply their new knowledge and skills.
Bug Club Phonics and DfE SSP Validation (pearson.com)
The six phases of the Pearson Bug Club progression provides a structure for the teachers to follow and plan children’s progression. The teachers carefully adapt their planning to meet the needs of the children within their class. The teacher’s individual assessments will inform the rate at which the children are able to progress through the phrases and adapt their pace accordingly. When appropriate, the practitioners will introduce the initial sounds and begin to teach digraphs. In the Foundation Stage we will revise all letter sounds and learn new digraphs and trigraphs. At this stage the children are also becoming more confident with segmenting and blending sounds to read whole words. Phonics and reading activities are taught in whole class and small group situations. Children will work with children who are at the same phonic and/or reading level. This is so that the teaching can be focussed on their needs. Discreet phonic sessions take place daily for 15 – 20 minutes and there are also enhanced phonic activities within the indoor and outdoor environment available for the children to explore independently throughout the day in the Foundation Stage. Phonics provision is also supplemented by a wide range of speaking and listening, English, spelling and grammar activities. Teachers regularly read with the children so the children get to know and love all sorts of stories, poetry and information books. This is in addition to the books that they bring home. This helps to extend children’s vocabulary and comprehension, as well as supporting their writing. All children have access to a wide range of books, both fiction and nonfiction to help embed their love of books, stories and reading. Children hear five stories a day including nursery rhymes.
Teaching Reading in Key Stage One and Two
The teaching of Phonics continues into Year One and Two as appropriate and children learn to read and write a range of graphemes and alternate graphemes. Alongside this the children are taught the ‘tricky words’ – high frequency words which do not follow the regular phonetic pattern. Phonics and reading activities are taught in whole class and small group situations. Children will work with children who are at the same phonic and/or reading level. This is so that the teaching can be focussed on their needs. Discreet phonic sessions take place daily for 15 – 20 minutes. In Key Stage One the children continue to hear five stories every day and a class chapter book is also read every day. Children develop their reading comprehension skills through whole class reading lessons using the progression and resources from Fred’s Teaching Reading. The teacher’s individual assessments will inform the rate at which the children are able to progress through these lessons and adapt their pace accordingly. Children are heard read regularly at school.
In Key Stage Two the teaching of Phonics continues as appropriate. Children develop their reading comprehension skills through whole class reading lessons using the progression and resources from Fred’s Teaching Reading. The teacher’s individual assessments will inform the rate at which the children are able to progress through these lessons and adapt their pace accordingly. Small group interventions are provided as appropriate using Reciprocal Reading skills to support children that need extra help in developing their comprehension skills. Children are heard read regularly at school. A class novel is read every day to each class.
Home Reading – Foundation and Key Stage One
At Green Park School we use the Pearson Bug Club phonics programme. This is supported by a comprehensive scheme of decodeable reading books provided by Pearson. All children are given two new reading books and reading record to take home each Monday, books can be changed during the week as needed. Teachers ensure that these books are matched to the phonics phase that the child is learning. Reading Records are checked on a Friday and sent home. Parents are encouraged to record reading of wider texts for enjoyment over the weekend. All children are heard read one to one during the school week
Bug Club online books are also available to access at home with comprehension questions for children to answer.
Key Stage 2
Children who are not secure with their phonics will continue to take home Phonics matched books to support the learning in school. They will have a Reading Record that parents will help them complete. Reading Records will be collected and checked each Friday. These arrangements will be discussed with individual parents by class teachers. Early conversations about lack of engagement with this take place as necessary. These children are still included in the Reading Rainbow incentive and their reads will be counted from the Reading Record.
All other children in Key Stage 2 will receive a Reading Bookmark each half term. These will be colour coded to the band of the rainbow that they are on. They move up if they have completed their 20 + reads or continue on the band that they are on. Children record the title of the book, pages read or shared and date on the book mark each time they read a home. The expectation is 4 reads a week.
Reading books go home on a Monday and return on a Friday. Bug Club online books are also available to access at home with comprehension questions for children to answer. Bookmarks are checked each Friday for engagement. Early conversations about lack of engagement take place as necessary.
Long term, pupils will:
- be able to read fluently both for pleasure and to further their learning.
- pupils acquire strategies to enable them to become independent learners in English (spelling rules and patterns and how to tackle unfamiliar words when reading).
- make good and better progress from their starting points to achieve their full potential
Year group book spines
Whole Class Reading Maps
© Green Park School 2019
Green Park Drive, Newport Pagnell, Buckinghamshire, MK16 0NH