At Our Lady and St Anselm's, we believe that sound literacy skills are essential for progress across the curriculum and to prepare pupils effectively for tasks of adult life.
All teachers have a responsibility to develop pupils’ competence in reading, writing, speaking and listening in their own subjects and to ensure that pupils become competent users of language, and can access the curriculum effectively and achieve their potential.
Children arrive into reception working below average within reading and writing on Development Matters. This means early emphasis needs to be put into these children acquiring the basic skills necessary to develop early within KS1. The development of literacy skills across the curriculum will be implemented according to the following guidelines:
We aim to develop pupils’ abilities within an integrated programme of Speaking & Listening, Reading & Writing. Pupils will be given opportunities to interrelate the requirements of English within a broad and balanced approach to the teaching of English across the curriculum, with opportunities to consolidate and reinforce taught literacy skills.
At Our Lady and St Anselm’s R.C. Primary school we strive for children to be a ‘Primary Literate Pupil.’
By the age of 11 we aim for a child to be able to:
At OLSA, every child is given the opportunity to acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to become analytical readers and competent authors. We promote the enjoyment of reading by carefully selecting high-quality texts that are used for learning across the curriculum. By providing our children with the skills to read, they are able to broaden their knowledge in a range of subject disciplines.
Children are exposed to a word rich curriculum through the use of working walls and revision of key words. Through immersion in high-quality texts, teachers identify and explicitly teach rich and varied vocabulary, providing them with the tools to become confident communicators, readers and writers. The reason for this is simple: to close the vocabulary gap for our most disadvantaged children.
Carefully planned writing lessons using The Write Stuff and Lancashire planning allow our children to develop their skills, by adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences. They are given the opportunity to apply their skills across the curriculum and they are encouraged to use language effectively to create a desired effect on the reader. Our intention is that by the time children leave OLSA, they have had the opportunity to master skills in speaking, reading and writing that will prepare them for secondary education and life beyond the school gates.
Our Curriculum Intent for Phonics
In our EYFS and KS1 classes, we provide a rich reading environment and by doing so, our children learn to listen, speak and discriminate between sounds. Reading opportunities are linked with all stages of their learning. Speaking and listening is given a high priority for children to experiment and become confident and fluent decoders. Our carefully sequenced approach allows children to become confident in segmenting, blending and decoding words through each phonics phase.
Implementation: Phonics & Early Reading
To achieve this, reading is central to all learning.
By being exposed to a wide range of stories and texts, children are better able to make sense of the world. We foster a love of reading from an early age when the children join us in Reception. To ensure that reading is at the heart of the curriculum, we immerse the children in reading experiences such as daily story times, sharing stories and reading aloud stories including poems, rhymes and non-fiction to develop their speaking and listening skills as well as their vocabulary.
Reading development is closely related to that of phonics, communication and writing, therefore we ensure that the children are reading books that are closely matched to their phonic level, by providing the children with a reading book aligned to their phonic level, as well as a reading book that supports their vocabulary development and language comprehension. We also use a systematic approach to phonics to support the development of early reading.
We use the ‘Letters and Sounds’ scheme to support our discrete, daily teaching of phonics in EYFS and KS1. We use a systematic approach of ‘revisit, teach, practise, apply,’ in order to provide the children with the phonic knowledge and language comprehension they need to read and write. For more information about each phonic phase click here
At OLSA, we teach Phonics through:
- Daily lessons which follow a systematic approach: revisiting sounds already taught, learning new sounds and practising with applying sounds through activities.
- A multi-sensory approach to teaching, which is engaging.
- Reinforcing and applying acquired phonic knowledge and skills across the curriculum and in shared/guided reading and writing.
Reading Across the School
Reading forms a large part of the curriculum here at OLSA and carefully selected texts for other curriculum areas ensure that it remains at the heart of their learning. Alongside Literacy sessions, daily guided and whole class shared reading sessions take place in all classes across the school. Through these sessions, the children can develop their reading comprehension skills around vocabulary, retrieval and inference, prediction, explanation and summarising linked to their focus text. We value the importance of the explicit pre-teaching of vocabulary so that our children don’t stumble on unknown words and can have a better understanding of the text. Once they have an understanding of the text, they are encouraged to read like an author. Reading with a writer’s eye helps to deepen understanding of how language has been used to create different effects, which they can draw on in their writing.
At OLSA, we always aim to promote reading for pleasure as this itself plays a major role in reading development. Our teachers are readers and share their love of reading with their children in a range of ways, including daily class reads and special events such as mystery readers and world book day. Each classroom has an inviting reading area, resourced with ‘top picks’ and books linked to topics. The children in KS1are also given the opportunity to visit our well-stocked library regularly, where they can borrow books to take home.
Miss Fleming is our Literacy Subject Leader as she is enthusiastic about developing children's skills in preparation for their life long learning journey. She believes that laying the foundations early on makes a real difference to a child's development, which is why she has ensured high quality phonics teaching and learning occurs daily, and, reading within the Early Years is given a priority where reading is presented at every opportunity. Miss Fleming is passionate about developing the love of reading within school and has worked hard to ensure that children are provided with the very best opportunities to develop a love of reading, through timely visits to the local library; developing a reading scheme through Accelerated Reader to allow children independent choice in their reading and continually revising book choices to ensure children are continually stimulated to read for pleasure. She works regularly with other schools and agencies to ensure that teaching and learning of Literacy is at the forefront of your child's education, proving high quality texts and new methods of teaching and learning to enhance your child's progression.
The Importance of Reading - Recent DfE Guidance July 2020
Further to the recent publication by the DfE in regards to reading, it has never been more important to the welfare and education of your child that they maintain good reading practice wherever, and whenever, possible. Below is the current advice that is recommended and will have a dramatic impact upon your child's education if just followed for at least 15 minutes a day.
Reading helps your child’s wellbeing, develops imagination and has educational benefits too. Just a few minutes a day can have a big impact on children of all ages.
Try to read to your child every day. It’s a special time to snuggle up and enjoy a story. Stories matter and children love re-reading them and poring over the pictures. Try adding funny voices to bring characters to life.
Give children lots of opportunities to read different things in their own time - it doesn’t just have to be books. There’s fiction, non-fiction, poetry, comics, magazines, recipes and much more. Try leaving interesting reading material in different places around the home and see who picks it up.
Choose a favourite time to read together as a family and enjoy it. This might be everyone reading the same book together, reading different things at the same time, or getting your children to read to each other. This time spent reading together can be relaxing for all.
Make a calm, comfortable place for your family to relax and read independently - or together.
Libraries in England are able to open from 4 July, so visit them when you’re able to and explore all sorts of reading ideas. Local libraries also offer brilliant online materials, including audiobooks and ebooks to borrow. See Libraries Connected for more digital library services and resources.
This is a great way to make connections, develop understanding and make reading even more enjoyable. Start by discussing the front cover and talking about what it reveals and suggests the book could be about. Then talk about what you’ve been reading and share ideas. You could discuss something that happened that surprised you, or something new that you found out. You could talk about how the book makes you feel and whether it reminds you of anything.
You could try cooking a recipe you’ve read together. Would you recommend it to a friend? Alternatively, play a game where you pretend to be the characters in a book, or discuss an interesting article you’ve read.
Play games that involve making connections between pictures, objects and words, such as reading about an object and finding similar things in your home. You could organise treasure hunts related to what you’re reading. Try creating your child’s very own book by using photos from your day and adding captions.
You know your child best and you’ll know the best times for your child to read. If they have special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) then short, creative activities may be the way to get them most interested. If English is an additional language, encourage reading in a child’s first language, as well as in English. What matters most is that they enjoy it.
13th September 2020 =- Roald Dahl Day
1st October 2020 - National Poetry Day
February 2021 - National Story Telling week
4th March 2021 - World Book Day
23rd April 2021 - Shakespeare Day
On Tuesday, 21st January 2020, Inspire class visited Whitworth Library to continue to raise awareness of reading for pleasure and also, to introduce them to further texts on their current topic, The Victorians. Whilst at the library, the children were read a story about real life back in Victorian Whitworth and what it would have been like for a child of their age. After that, they were then free to roam the library and look for books to loan to develop their enjoyment of reading.