Reading is at the heart of our curriculum, a crucial part of our daily experience and is essential for developing educational and social progress. It is our vision to ensure every child achieves their full potential to become confident, enthusiastic readers and diverse, understanding members of society. As inspiring role models of literature, it is our intention to nurture a love of reading, to immerse children in high quality texts, and to develop a thirst for discovery. We strive to cultivate a community with strong abilities in both the spoken and written word, therefore the acquisition of language and vocabulary is of the utmost importance and underpins our regular meaningful discussions and explicit teaching of reading skills.
Reading: EYFS and Key Stage 1
EYFS and Year 1
Using the Ruth Miskin Scheme ‘Read Write Inc. Phonics’, children will be taught how to
apply phonic knowledge to decode words and will learn the 40+ phonemes (letter sounds),
including alternative sounds for graphemes. This will support the accurate blending of
sounds in unfamiliar words. They will also read common exception words (for example
‘said’), words with more than one syllable and contractions (I’ll we’ll). Children will
experience a range of good-quality books, consistent with their developing phonic
knowledge, to build confidence and fluency in word reading.
Through listening and reading, children will become familiar with key stories and poems, and
will be encouraged to discuss their ideas with teachers, other adults and their peers, relating
these to their own experiences. They will show their understanding of these stories and
poems by retelling, making predictions and using simple inference skills, for example, to
Year 2 will continue to build on the phonic skills from Year 1 until the automatic decoding of
words is embedded and reading is fluent. Children will focus more on alternative sounds for
graphemes and begin to learn common suffixes. They will continue to read a wide range of
books and texts with greater fluency, reflecting their improving phonic knowledge and
As well as reading books independently, children will listen to, discuss and respond to a wide range of
high-quality poetry, stories and non-fiction at a level beyond that at which they can read independently.
They will continue to increase their repertoire of familiar stories, learning key literary
language, and developing their vocabulary.
Reading: Key Stage 2
Year 3 and 4
In key stage 2, children will apply their growing knowledge of root words, prefixes and
suffixes, both to read aloud and to understand the meaning of new words they meet. By
now, the majority of children will be expected to have good phonic knowledge and the
emphasis in reading is focused more on comprehension rather than decoding skills.
Children will develop their skills selecting and recording key information and details from a
wide range of high-quality texts. They will increase their understanding of higher-tier vocabulary, and
develop ways to gain meaning of new words, for example, using context and their growing
knowledge of prefixes. Inference skills have a greater focus and children will draw
conclusions about characters in stories, how their feelings, thoughts and motives can be
deduced through their actions, justifying inferences with evidence. Children will recognise
different types of poetry and will have the opportunity to prepare and perform these using
intonation to show their understanding.
Year 5 and 6
In years 5 and 6, children will continue to apply their growing knowledge of root words,
prefixes and suffixes, both to read aloud and to understand the meaning of new words they
meet. At this stage, there should be no need for further direct teaching of word reading skills
for almost all children.
Building on lower key stage 2, children will continue to develop their retrieval skills, selecting
and summarising key information from more complex texts. They will increase their
knowledge of higher-level vocabulary, synonyms and colloquial terms, and develop
strategies for making meaning from new and unfamiliar words, for example using their
knowledge of root words. They will study an author’s use of figurative language and the
impact of this on the reader. Children will encounter a wider range of poetry, learning key
poems by heart.
Fresh Start is an intervention programme by ‘Read Write Inc. Phonics’ designed for children in Key Stage 2 who have not yet secured their phonic decoding skills. Fresh Start is taught daily by trained adults and follows the same structure as Phonics but with more age appropriate books and resources. Once children successfully complete the programme they return to class reading lessons with additional support in class.
Library and Class Book Corners
At Barn Croft we are fortunate enough to have wonderful school library and exciting, inviting book corners in every class. Our library and book corners are well-stocked with high-quality, age-appropriate literature for all the children to enjoy. Each class has a library session weekly where children can borrow books to take home to read with family or independently.
Reading skills are assessed daily through formative assessment in class and misconceptions or errors addressed immediately or in the following lesson. Long term planning is sequenced to revisit and build on skills throughout the year, using high-quality texts as the stimuli. Summative assessments take place termly and are gap analysed to identify areas of strength and weakness and planning is adapted in the following weeks to close any gaps. Following assessments and analysis, 1:1 interventions are put in place for those not meeting age related expectations as well as in class support for those identified as not making enough progress. Please also see Phonics page for early reading information in greater detail.