English

READING

Here at St John's we love reading! We have a broad and engaging reading curriculum. Pupils read widely and often, with fluency and comprehension appropriate to their age.  The pupils take home books that are banded using a national colour-banding system. This is comprised of a mixture of Oxford Reading Tree, Storyworld, Collins Big Cat, Songbird and ‘real’ books, which encourage a wider reading experience and include non-fiction texts. Children are also encouraged to borrow a book from our extensive library collection to promote enthusiasm and independent reading both in school and at home. We also encourage children to read books from home and from the local library. In KS1 and EYFS we have reading time in the morning where children get to read to an adult and take part in activities related to their English or Phonics work. In KS2 we have daily comprehension time/Bug Club where all children take part in comprehensions appropriate to their need and stage in learning.  All pupil Drop Everything daily at 3pm to listen to a class story. 

Books are organised in colour-banded levels across the school, in line with our reading scheme and are phonetically decodable at the early stages.  We encourage parents to read with their child as often as possible, but if life is just too busy then for a minimum of 4 to 5 times per week.  Discussing authors, book and vocabulary with children at home as well as in school ensures that children leave with a rich cultural capital. We hold an annual book week to encourage children to get 'deeper into their love of books'.

 We have a local Salisbury author, Julia Edwards, working with the school this year and will be taking part in her Patron of Reading scheme.  https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/8368800.Julia_Edwards

She is coming in frequently throughout the year and the children are bursting with enthusiasm.  We have a recommended readers board where children share their recommended reads with each other.  

 Reading at home- It is expected that EVERY child reads at home. We then encourage you to make a comment in your child's reading record book and sign their bookmark. When your child reads, please ask them questions to ensure they are understanding what they are reading and not just the recall of words. It is important that children foster a love of reading and not see it as a chore. As well as listening to your children read it is important to model good reading habits to them by reading yourself and reading to your children too.

 

Do you want your child to be good at reading? Reading widely and for pleasure is the single biggest indicator of future success for children. Reading regularly from a wide range of quality literature has been proven in numerous studies to be the best thing your child could do to improve their overall academic performance and to encourage a life long love of learning. The chart below shows the impact reading at home for just 20 minutes every night can have. It is staggering the difference just 20 minutes per day can make.

Writing- At St John's we like to make our curriculum interesting and engaging. We use a range of strategies to enhance children's writing.  One being Talk 4 Write, which is proving very successful.  We make sure we do lots of Cross-Curricular writing so we can really embed our Literacy skills within a range of other subjects; like Science and History. It is important that children see the link between reading and how this impacts their writing.  We celebrate writing in worships and on displays.    

We have a staged handwriting target system to encourage pupils to progress towards correct letter formation and placement of letters on the line. Once pupils can write neatly with a joined script (taught during Year 2) they are awarded a ‘Pen License’ which can be retracted if their handwriting isn’t maintained! Pupils can at this stage begin to develop their own more personal handwriting style. Pupils are presented with certificates for completing each handwriting target.
 
All staff mark children’s writing by informing them verbally and on their work with what they are pleased with and next steps to improve their writing.  All children are given time within the lesson to respond to this marking. Pupils are also expected to assess their own and others’ written work 
 
 
Below are some useful documents that are available for you to help your child with reading: