St Philip's Church of England

Controlled Primary School

Reading In School

Approach to Reading


We have a clear, consistent, whole school approach to reading.


Competence in reading is the key to independent learning and is given the highest priority at St. Philip’s Primary School, enabling the children to become enthusiastic, independent and reflective readers. Success in reading has a direct effect upon progress in all other areas of the Curriculum and is crucial in developing children’s self-confidence and motivation. Our home reading books are from the Oxford Reading Tree scheme. During guided reading sessions, we also use a range of other text resources, including Big Cat, Navigators, Rising Stars materials for comprehension and our class novel. or books by our chosen class novelist. 


We teach phonics using a systematic synthetic phonics system. Our phonics teaching is done regularly (at least daily), discretely, explicitly and in an agreed and rational sequence. We use Letters and Sounds for our planning. We start in Reception with Jolly Phonics to introduce the letters and their sounds. Children in Reception and children who may need more reinforcement in Year One also use Soundswrite.


Beginner readers are taught four things:


• grapheme-phoneme correspondences (that is, the alphabetic code) in a clearly defined, incremental sequence


• to synthesise (blend) phonemes (sounds) in order all through a word to read it


• to segment words into their constituent phonemes for spelling


• that blending and segmenting are reversible processes




The school aims to:


• Provide the children with the skills and strategies necessary to develop into competent and fluent readers


• Encourage the enjoyment of books and reading so that the children develop a life-long love of books


• Develop a critical appreciation of what they read


• Develop study skills so that the children can find appropriate fiction and non-fiction books from the library


• Develop research skills, using library and class texts, in conjunction with the ICT system


• Develop a critical appreciation of the work of authors, poets and illustrators in order to emulate these skills in their own writing


• Encourage care and ownership of books


Our ultimate aim is to ensure that children progress from more basic comprehension skills to deduction, inference and critical evaluation and for the children to become confident, independent readers with high levels of enjoyment and a life-long skill.


Specifically, we intend for our pupils to become actively engaged in the following Assessment Focus Areas:


AF1- Use a range of strategies, including accurate decoding of text, to read for meaning.


AF2- Understand, describe, select or retrieve information, events or ideas from texts and use quotation and reference to text.


AF3- Deduce, infer or interpret information, events or ideas from texts.


AF4- Identify and comment on the structure and organisation of texts, including grammatical and presentational features at text level.


AF5- Explain and comment on the writers’ use of language, including grammatical and literacy features at word and sentence level.


AF6- Identify and comment on writers’ purposes and viewpoints and the overall effect of the text on the reader.


AF7- Relate texts to their social, cultural and historical contexts and literacy traditions.