English - Reading

At St John’s we plan and deliver a high-quality education in English in order to teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them.

We intend to equip all pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment.

Through reading in particular, pupils have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. We believe access to rich and varied library of literature, especially, plays a key role in such development. It is therefore our intent that all children have access to such literature including archaic texts, non-linear time sequence stories, narratively complex, resistant texts and texts that look at British heritage, people who have made a difference in history, black, Asian and other ethnic minorities. Reading also enables pupils both to acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know. All the skills of language are essential to participating fully as a member of society, as a child and in adult life.

It is our intent that every child should:

  • read easily, fluently and with good understanding
  • develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information
  • acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language
  • appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
  • write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences
  • use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas
  • are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate

Reading All children read at school within lessons and are encouraged to read at home. To develop a love of reading the children have a class story which is read to them daily. Books are selected by the teachers and English coordinator to ensure they are high quality and, where possible, link to other curriculum areas. These books are progressive and are mapped to ensure suitable coverage. Early reading and phonics play an important role in the St John’s reading journey. Phonics learning begins on the first day of school and all reading books are tied into the children’s phonics learning and ability. We follow a synthetic phonics programme and our phonics progression is clearly mapped. Children are read to by an adult every day – this modelling, enjoyment and discussion over carefully selected books ensure children build on their cultural capital and grow their love of reading.

We use Little Wandle as our accreddited SSP and follow their progression. 

We use Collins Big Cat’s Phonetically decodable books linked to our phonics scheme for all children in EYFS and KS1. All books are banded to ensure continuity and progression. Children do not have to read all the books to move to the next level. We assess the children using the Benchmark scheme annually, or when needed, to ensure they are reading within the required band that matches their phonetical progression within class.

In KS2 children have access to their own class book libraries and are able to select books from within these that are appropriate to both their reading and comprehension skills. Children complete NFER and SATs tests termly. This data is then moderated by the teacher to ensure children are progressing in line with age related expectations

Children will make at least good progress in Reading, Writing and Speaking and Listening from their last point of statutory assessment or from their EYFS data. Children will have a love of Reading. Children will use their English and Reading knowledge and skills, in all curriculum areas, to enable them to know more, remember more and understand more.