Reading at St Michael’s

Reading is central to our curriculum: we are committed to developing our pupils’ word reading, reading comprehension and importantly, reading for pleasure.

Read Write Inc

We use Read Write Inc at our school to support children learning to read and write. It is a synthetic phonics programme, which focuses on reading and writing the 44 sounds in the English language. The children learn to read using sound blending known as ‘Fred Talk’. Then, they learn to write the letters/letter groups which represent the sounds. A huge emphasis is placed on partner work, hence children fully participate in every step of the lesson and are given the opportunity to practice reading and talk through their ideas. The children demonstrate their understanding of the story by answering questions using the ‘Find it’ and ‘Prove it’ technique.

We regularly assess the children and place them in small groups appropriate to their ability. This ensures that there are no gaps in their knowledge and all needs are met. It is an effective and fun phonics programme which creates fluent readers, confident speakers and willing writers.

Reading Comprehension

We use Reading Masters which takes a ‘mastery approach’ to reading and building comprehension strategies. Reading Masters was created by teachers in the Oval Cluster and action research in these schools showed remarkable success in raising attainment through this approach. We have adapted this structure to suit our children and their learning.

Four 30 minutes sessions take place each week and focus on a particular reading skill, guaranteeing that each of the sessions has a clear learning intention. Teachers select a wide range of engaging texts which complement our wider curriculum.

Reading for pleasure

Class Reading

In addition to the texts that we read through English and across the curriculum, we are lucky enough to have whole class sets of the following books which we will enjoy as a class throughout the year. This will give children the opportunity to listen to, and read along with, quality and challenging fiction texts. This also exposes children to new authors and writing beyond the genre of their usual preference.

The Reading Tree

We love to encourage and recognise those children who are reading outside of school. Our reading challenge gives children the chance to collect apples and leaves for reading often.

10 reads = Green Leaf   

25 reads = Red Leaf

50 reads= Red Apple

75 reads = Gold Leaf

100 reads = Gold Apple

In addition to all of this…

  • We have an amazing library where children can borrow up to three books at a time.
  • We celebrate Book Week and dress up as our favourite characters in March each year.
  • We have a beautiful and relaxing reading garden.
  • There are a range of book clubs.
  • We have ‘book flashes’ in assemblies and check ins.
  • Reading champions are children who support less confident readers.
  • We have beautiful and inspiring picture books which we can discuss together in class assemblies.