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Learning to read is the most important thing your child will learn at our 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.

We want your child to love reading – and to want to read for themselves. This is why we put our efforts into making sure they develop a love of books as well as simply learning to read.

At St James and St John Church of England Primary School we use the RWInc phonics scheme which is a validated, detailed and systematic programme for teaching phonic skills. We also have daily guided reading / ERIC sessions.


Read Write Inc Phonics

The scheme enables the children to read by developing their phonic knowledge and skills. It sets out a detailed and systematic programme for teaching phonic skills for children starting school, with the aim of them becoming fluent readers by the age of seven.

We start by teaching phonics to the children in the Reception class. This means that they learn how to ‘read’ the sounds in words and how those sounds can be written down. This is essential for reading, but it also helps children learn to spell well. We teach the children simple ways of remembering these sounds and letters. Ask them to show you what these are.

The children also practise reading (and spelling) what we call ‘tricky words’, such as ‘once,’ ‘have,’ ‘said’ and ‘where’.

The children practise their reading with books that match the phonics (decodable books) and the ‘tricky words’ they know. They start thinking that they can read and this does wonders for their confidence.

The teachers read to the children, too, so the children get to know all sorts of stories, poetry and information books. They learn many more words this way and it also helps their writing.


In Read Write Inc. Phonics pupils:

• Decode letter-sound correspondences quickly and effortlessly, using their phonic knowledge and skills

• Read common exception words on sight

• Understand what they read

• Read aloud with fluency and expression

• Write confidently, with a strong focus on vocabulary and grammar

• Spell quickly and easily by segmenting the sounds in words

• Acquire good handwriting.


We use various ways to find out how the children are getting on in reading. We use the information to decide what phonics group they should be in. Your child will work with children who are at the same reading level as him or her (this may mean that they change classrooms / teaching areas for their phonics lesson).

We regularly assess where the children are with their phonics skills and move children to appropriate groups to ensure all children are making good progress and the teaching is matched to their needs.

We also use a reading test so that we can make sure that all our children are at the level that they should be for their age compared to all the children across the country.

In the summer term, the government asks us to do a phonics check of all the Year 1 children. That gives us extra information about their progress. We will talk to you about how well your child has done, and especially if we have any worries at all. For those children who do not pass the phonics screening check, they retake the test in Year 2.

When children are in Year 2, they should be able to use all of their phonics skills to be able to read aloud books that are at the right level for their age.

Whilst your child is learning phonics they will bring home a decodable RWInc book that they can read on their own to you and a reading for pleasure book that they may need help with or you should read to them.

Please trust your child’s teacher to choose the book(s) that will help your child the most.

Help your child to sound out the letters in words and then to ‘push’ the sounds together to make a whole word. Try not to refer to the letters by their names. Help your child to focus on the sounds. You can hear how to say the sounds correctly at this link:

Sometimes your child might bring home a picture book that they know well. Please don’t say, ‘This is too easy.’ Instead, encourage your child to tell you the story out loud; ask them questions about things that happen or what they think about some of the characters in the story.

We know parents and carers are very busy people. But if you can find time to read to your child as much as possible, it helps him or her to learn about books and stories. They also learn new words and what they mean. Show that you are interested in reading yourself and talk about reading as a family.


Reading Intent

At St James and St John Church of England Primary School we prioritise the ‘simple view of reading,’ children being able to read words/text and understand what they have read. We are determined that every child will learn to read fluently and develop a life-long love for reading. We believe that reading is a key life skill and the ability to read is fundamental to succeed in education and empower future learning.

At St James and St John child will:

  • have a love of reading and a desire to read widely for both pleasure and information;                                      
  • read with confidence, fluency and understanding;
  • develop a wider vocabulary and knowledge of the world.


Reading Implement

How we encourage a love of reading and a desire to read widely:

  • Children have access to a wide variety of diverse, high quality texts of different genres.
  • All staff model a love of reading through reading daily to children, actively encouraging book choices and building reading resilience.
  • E.R.I.C. (everybody reading in class) is prioritised as daily practice.
  • St James and St John celebrates the love of reading through various whole school events including: Author visits, Pyjamarama, World Book Day, Poetry Day and peer reading sessions.
  • Pupil voice is central to evaluating current reading provision and making suggestions for improvement.
  • EYFS and KS1 have a reading corner/area with selection of high quality texts that are suitable for all children in the class. KS2 will have a book shelf with a range of quality texts.


 Read with confidence, fluency and understanding

  • The teaching of systematic synthetic phonics is taught from the beginning of EYFS using the Read Write Inc phonic scheme.
  • Children will have access to phonics’ mats and phonics displays.
  • Phonics is taught daily in EYFS, year 1 and year 2 and KS2 where appropriate.
  • All EYFS / KS1 children have a decodable reading book that is matched to their phonics level.
  • In EYFS and KS1 there is an expectation that children read their decodable book twice to develop fluency.
  • Children are able to visit the library to choose their reading for pleasure book which they can take home.
  • In KS2 (for those who have completed the RWInc phonics programme) children have a book banded colour book that is matched to their reading level.
  • Daily guided reading / E.R.I.C. sessions focus on reading skills and comprehension. This includes consolidating phonics skills, reading for pleasure, cross-curricular reading, reading comprehension and an activity that is based on the book that they have previously read.  
  • During guided reading / E.R.I.C. sessions children learn how to comprehend what they have read through the use of questioning based on V.I.P.E.R.S.
  • There is an expectation that all children are asked to read five times a week at home, this could be independent, shared or listening to somebody read.
  • Each child has an individual diary where reading is recorded and tracked as a means of communicating development between the child, parent and teacher.
  • Parents are actively encouraged to volunteer to support reading across the school.


Develop a wider vocabulary and knowledge of the world

  • When purchasing new reading material, texts are carefully considered to ensure there is a wide variety of classics, essential reads and books from other cultures.
  • Texts are used to support and enrich our curriculum allowing children to make cross curricular links with what they read. Comprehension skills through the use of VIPERS are practised in other curriculum areas.
  • Core texts for Writing are chosen for their rich and challenging vocabulary which are explored in detail to deepen understanding and expand children’s vocabulary.
  • Children have the opportunity to empathise with characters, explore unfamiliar settings, develop their imagination and challenge viewpoints.
  • Children imitate the core text to build their knowledge and confidence to enable them to apply it to their writing.


Year 6 Termly Overview