Phonics & Reading
Our approach to reading
At Gillshill, we believe that the teaching of reading is integral to a child’s understanding and appreciation of the world around them; a platform that allows our children to see beyond what they know, share in cultural experiences and develop the vocabulary they need to effectively express themselves. Our aim in is for every child to be able to read and find pleasure in reading; to become inquisitive and curious readers; to feel confident in their reading ability and to develop their understanding of texts using a range of reading skills whilst developing and fostering a lifelong love of reading.
Phonics is taught using the Read Write Inc (RWI) programme. Read write Inc is a comprehensive programme that teaches children to read accurately and fluently with good comprehension. They learn to form each letter, spell correctly, and compose their ideas step-by-step.
All staff in EYFS, KS1 and Y3 have received training and are supported in using RWI to maximise progress and develop confident readers and writers.
Pupils who need to continue phonics lessons after Year 2, will do so in small groups or individually.
All Read Write Inc lessons are based on the 5 Principles:
PRAISE – Children learn quickly in a positive climate.
PACE – Good pace is essential to the lesson.
PURPOSE – Every part of the lesson has a specific purpose.
PASSION – This is a very prescriptive programme. It is the energy, enthusiasm and passion that teachers put into the lesson that brings the teaching and learning to life.
PARTICIPATION – A strong feature of Read Write Inc. lessons is partner work and the partners ‘teaching’ each other.
Read Write Inc. sessions take place in the morning. Children are streamed into attainment groups to make sure teaching and learning is at the correct level for their current achievement. Groups are led by class teachers and trained members of our support staff. KS1 children are assessed at least once per half term.
Within each Read Write Inc. session, children have the opportunity to learn how to read and write new sounds, as well as revise previously-taught sounds. When children reach the appropriate level, they will also practise reading alien/nonsense words to ensure they are using their decoding skills effectively. Once children have sufficient phonics knowledge, they also read a story as part of their phonics lessons, which matches their phonetic ability and helps to develop their comprehension skills.
Children will stay in a phonics group until they have succeeded in all of the RWI programme. In KS2, or when children have successfully mastered the Phonics code, reading comprehension is taught through discrete reading lessons with specific reading
comprehension strategies using the acronym ‘VIPERS’ which covers all National Curriculum objectives.
Comprehension strategies are modelled before pupil practice the strategies with feedback. We encourage children to take greater responsibility for their own learning and reduce the modelling as they become more confident with answering a range of questions.
We continually promote a love of learning through the wide range of books we have to offer the children, whether reading together as a class or taking books home to share with their family. We have a library that the whole school is able to use, as well as each class having their own set of books in their reading area, often linked to a specific subject being taught that term. Teachers choose books carefully for their reading lessons to ensure children are engaged in the text. Children read a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry each year. Teachers also read a story to their children every day to promote a love of learning and reading for pleasure.
Our Reading Reward System ensures children’s home reading achievements are celebrated. Each week, teachers monitor the number of times each child has read. This leads to them receiving rewards if they meet the weekly, termly and yearly expectations.
KS1 – 3 times 15min a week
Y3/4 – 4 times 15min a week
Y5/6 - 5 times 15min a week
If children meet the weekly expectation, they will receive 2 merits (KS1) or golden tickets (KS2). If they meet these expectations every week within a term, they will receive a certificate. If they meet the termly expectations throughout Autumn, Spring and Summer, they will take part in a reward afternoon such as a film or a visit to the park!
Helping your child with reading
Here at Gillshill Primary School, we believe reading to be very important. A great deal can be done in the home to help your child with reading. The link below gives tips on how to inspire readers and share books with your child.