At St John Bosco’s our intent is to build a curriculum which develops a love of reading to help pupils know more, remember more and understand more. We have designed a curriculum which has reading at its core across all curriculum areas. Through choosing quality texts, we intend to develop a love of reading and allow children to recognise the pleasure they can get from their reading, as well as an understanding that reading allows them to discover new knowledge, revisit prior knowledge and understand more about what they learn, fuelling their imagination for ideas to use in their own work.




We will support all children to learn to read through clear leadership; consistent teaching and learning approaches; regular monitoring, training, and assessment along with a joint commitment between school and home. Reading teachers, with support from the Reading Lead and Senior Leadership Team, draw upon careful observations and continuous assessment to ensure children are challenged and to identify children who may need additional support. Timely intervention is planned for those children working below expected levels as soon as their needs are identified. All children read aloud during phonics or whole class reading. In addition, some pupils may read at least once more per week with a teacher, teaching assistant or reading volunteer; the focus being on the lowest 20%. Furthermore, Pupil Premium children and those pupils not reading regularly at home, have additional opportunities to read aloud.


At St John Bosco’s, the systematic teaching of phonics has high priority in Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1. We use a synthetic phonics teaching programme called Read Write Inc. (RWI) Phonics as a basis to teach our pupils to read and write. Pupils usually complete the programme by Year 2; some may even finish towards the end of Year 1. Pupils in Lower Key Stage 2 who need extra support with decoding may also follow the programme. We ensure that pupils can read the last set of phonics stories with fluency and understanding  before they progress onto our whole class reading scheme.


RWI_Logo.pngHow do we teach Early Reading? 

Pupils start Read Write Inc. Phonics in Nursery in the Spring term. They begin by learning the rhymes for each of the letters. In Reception, we group children by their reading progress during RWI sessions. The sessions last between 20 -40 minutes a day. We re-assess children every half term so we can place them in a group where they will make the most progress. One to one or small group sessions may be provided for some children. Staff may also use ‘Pinny Time’ to revisit key sounds/words at incidental points throughout the day in Reception and Key Stage 1.


RWI Phonics is presented in a simple but exciting format so that pupils can learn how to read and write sounds effortlessly. First we teach pupils the different pictures that relate to the sounds in the programme. This is introduced in Nursery so that pupils are familiar with the images in preparation for further learning in Reception. This is followed by learning one way to read and write the first 40+ sounds in English, using the pictures to help identify the different sounds.


Fred 2.PNG

We use a Frog called Fred to play ‘Fred Talk’ games to help with oral blending and to assist pupils when reading words by sound-blending. Fred says the sound and children help him blend the sounds to read each word. Then we teach the children different spellings of the same sounds and use phrases to help them remember each sound, for example, ‘may I play?’ accompanies the ay sound. We refer to speed sounds charts so that pupils can begin to make connections between the different graphemes they are learning to represent the sounds.


We want pupils to work together so teamwork is a key part of the RWI sessions. Partner work is very important; the teacher observes and checks what they know and only moves on when pupils are ready. Pupils are introduced to new characters and words along with the tricky ‘red words’ prior to reading a RWI text. We want them to get excited about the story. They then read the book at least three times and they should then be able to share the story confidently with some expression or a ‘storyteller’ voice.

Other linked story books or additional texts may be shared with the pupils in school and at home but we would not expect pupils to read these independently. Some pupils may require some additional revision of the sounds or blending these together to read words and will take part in additional support sessions following the RWI programme.


What happens when pupils finish the Read Write Inc. Phonics Programme?

After completing the Read Write Inc. Phonics programme, pupils are specifically taught reading skills as part of our ‘Whole Class Reading Programme’ which focuses on key elements of Vocabulary, Inference, Predict, Explain, Retrieve, Summarise (VIPERS). In sessions, pupils are encouraged to share ideas and engage in independent, pair, echo and choral reading with a range of age appropriate texts.

In KS2, Accelerated Reading sessions are twice a week. Children continue to develop their fluency skills, building on their phonics knowledge and skills. After completion of a book, children assess their understanding of the text by taking an online reading quiz.




Through the teaching of systematic phonics, our aim is for children to become fluent readers by the end of Key Stage 1. With decoding taught as the prime approach to reading, pupils will become familiar with this strategy and have the confidence to work out unfamiliar words in any new texts they encounter even when they have come to the end of the RWI programme. Pupils will have the opportunity to develop their fluency and comprehension as they move through the school; accessing a range of texts independently. Attainment in reading is measured using statutory assessments such as the end of EYFS, Key Stage 1 and 2 and following the outcomes in the Year 1 Phonics Screening check.


Additionally, we track our own reading attainment through the use of RWI half termly and screening assessments, PIRA reading assessments and ongoing teacher assessment. More importantly, we believe that reading is the key to unlock all learning and so the impact of our reading goes beyond the statutory assessments. We give all the children the opportunity to enter the amazing new worlds that a book opens up to them and share texts from a range of cultures or genres to inspire them to question or seek out more for themselves.


Reading for Pleasure


Reading for pleasure is something that we do of our own free will and get satisfaction from. Sometimes, someone might have originally asked us to read something but we continue because we're interested in it!

If you can encourage your child to read for pleasure, they will really reap the benefits. It might not seem like a particularly important task, but actually, research shows that reading for pleasure can be directly linked to children’s success throughout their time at school and even into adulthood.

Reading for pleasure opens up new worlds for children. It gives them the opportunity to use their imagination to explore new ideas, visit new places and meet new characters. Interestingly, reading for pleasure also improves children’s well-being and empathy. It helps them to understand their own identity, and gives them an insight into the world and the views of others.

Reading for pleasure is an incredibly important part of a child’s cognitive and social development. It can be done together with adults to give learners a sense of security, confidence and happiness. Reading can also help learners to relax, which is extremely important in today's busy world. 

Children who enjoy reading for fun are more likely to read for enjoyment throughout their lives. They are also more likely to develop a lifelong love of reading which will help them in all areas of life.


At St John Bosco we are passionate about reading for pleasure and we foster a love of reading in many ways…


There is a dedicated Reading Lead to ensure children have access to a wide range of reading activities.

Each year group reads each term a class novel, non-fiction texts, poetry and other text types.

Teachers read daily to the children for 20 minutes.

Reading certificates are presented  to one child per RWI phonics lesson for great reading effort.

There are book collections in all the classrooms, with each classroom having a stimulating, interactive reading area.

The school celebrates World Book Day each year and other national reading days. World Book Day includes opportunities to bring books alive through planned activities and reading sessions in mixed classes.  

Where possible, visits by: published authors, skilled story tellers, performances by professional theatre groups are organised in addition to making books and the use of drama to illustrate the texts studied.

Reading for information and other purposes will be reinforced in all subjects.

Classes write a short book review for the parent’s update letters.

Our outdoor reading shed is a different and exciting place to read a book.

Book boxes go out at playtimes so children can read if they want to. 

We have a set of themed books each half term, eg: How do I make healthy habits? Displayed in the corridor. Each class reads every book in the collection and vote for their favourite.

We have reading buddies who are older children who listen to and read to younger children in school.  


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