Learning to read is one of the most important things your child will learn at school. Everything else depends on it, so we put as much energy as we possibly can into making sure that every single child learns to read as quickly as possible.
Our aim is to teach children to become confident and competent readers by learning how to word read and by developing comprehension skills, which they can apply across the curriculum, as well as developing a lifelong love of reading for pleasure.
We teach reading from Foundation Stage to Year 6. This can be in the form of one-to-one reading with an adult, shared reading; whole class/small group guided reading sessions and independent reading.
All children are able to take books home to read with an adult, this shared learning will help children to practice their reading skills and develop a lifelong love of reading. Parents are actively encouraged to be involved in their child’s reading journey throughout their time at Wentworth. To help with reading at home and to ensure children are encouraged to read widely and to challenge themselves, we have a ‘Recommended Reads’ list for each year group in school.
Foundation Stage / Key Stage One
In Foundation and Key Stage 1 we teach phonics through daily phonics lessons following the sequence of sounds set out in ‘Letters & Sounds’. We believe phonics should be fun, so teach the sounds using the catchy ‘Jolly Phonics’ actions and songs. Phonics teaching is also supported by activities using ‘Phonics Play’. A range of other reading schemes are used to broaden children’s understanding, interest and enjoyment of reading.
In the Summer Term, the government asks us to do a phonics check of all the Year 1 children. We will let you know how well your child has done.
In the Summer Term, Year 2 and Year 6 have statutory tests where their ability to answer questions about a text are measured.
To prepare children for this, we ensure our teaching of reading throughout both key stages, includes many opportunities to discuss characters, setting and events. This reading for meaning is so important. Children need to be able to, not only decode a text but also answer a variety of questions about it.
Key Stage Two
In Key Stage 2, as their reading develops, children are encouraged to read from a wide range of fiction and non-fiction books. We begin to explore how the writer has used language to keep the reader’s interest. We look at the features of a range of different fiction, non-fiction and poetry texts, discussing the use of different layouts and sentences structures.
We also use the Accelerated Reading Programme to promote reading in Key Stage 2. Pupils take computerised quizzes on the books that they read and earn AR points as they progress. The internet-based software assesses children’s reading progress and suggests books that match pupils’ needs and interests. With AR the children are able to learn and grow at their own pace.
To further develop children’s comprehension of different texts we use ‘Reading VIPERS’. All children will be working on VIPERS during class reading, whether it is reading as a class, in a small group, or one-to-one with an adult. It would be fantastic if parents could also be referring to VIPERS when reading at home.
Up to the end of Year 2 the ‘S’ stands for
‘Sequence’. Once children move into Year 3 the ‘S’
stands for ‘Summarise’ which is a more
If we ensure that children are competent in all of these reading skills, we are covering all of the National Curriculum requirements and enabling them to be strong, confident readers. This acronym is just a great way of helping children and parents to remember what these vital skills are.
VIPERS can be used on any text that a child is reading, as well as on pictures, picture books and films. When any adult is listening to a child read, all they have to do is think of questions about the book/picture/film that covers all of the VIPERS. Below, are examples of how you can create your own questions using the following question openers.
In addition to this we use APE. This provides children with a structure for answering trickier comprehension questions. All children in KS2 are taught to answer questions with reference to the text (Answer it and Prove it) as per the National Curriculum. As they get older and more mature, including an explanation of links with other parts of the text and prior knowledge becomes important.
The acronym A.P.E (Answer it, Prove it, Explain it) helps children to remember how to answer these style of questions.
We encourage children to read with expression and confidence, making informed choices about the books they select. Weekly whole class comprehension sessions seek to specifically teach the skills of reading to enable children to understand a text in depth.
We wish to foster a love of reading through providing quality books and resources that children can share and enjoy both at school and at home. The importance and joy of reading is reinforced continually through rich and stimulating curriculum experiences.
Please see below for some helpful reading resources:-
Link to statutory word lists