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Strawberry FieldsPrimary SchoolLearning Together, Building The Future

Welcome toStrawberry FieldsPrimary SchoolLearning Together, Building The Future


Curriculum Statement – Reading


Our Reading Curriculum



Following the aims and objectives of the National Curriculum, the school endeavours to provide a lifelong love of reading. We provide children with the skills and knowledge in order to enjoy the art of reading.

Our curriculum is structured through high quality fictional texts and this drives its design. Similarly, non-fiction is layered across the curriculum in order to give children a broad understanding of why writers have chosen particular language or laid out text in a specific way. Moreover, books are sequenced in order to expose children to a variety of social, moral, spiritual and cultural themes so that they are able to develop cultural capital. As a result, texts are selected to challenge prejudice and broaden children‘s understanding of their roles and responsibilities as global citizens.

Different text types, including poetry, are carefully selected, across all year groups, so that children are systematically exposed to a variety of genres.  Furthermore, in understanding text variety, children recognise purpose and organisation, and learning is carefully planned to enable children to debate, reason and empathise. This is particularly important in closing the speech, language and vocabulary gap, identified upon entry into nursery. Furthermore, through this, timely opportunities are seized to enhance empathy and thus, develop reading comprehension strategies and vocabulary extension.

It is our intention to accelerate the progress of the lowest 20% by ensuring children’s phonological accuracy is relentlessly addressed. It is our professional ambition that all children will leave school as fluent, confident readers with a desire to read and enjoy a range of texts.



Mastery in phonics is fundamental to children being able to access a broad range of fiction and non-fiction texts, across the curriculum. This is achieved by teaching phonics systematically daily, with a drive to address the needs of all learners.

Sounds-Write is taught daily throughout Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 for 30 minutes.  The scheme is currently being implemented in to Key Stage 2 to support the teaching of spelling and reading. From the outset, parents are invited to workshops and practical sessions to demonstrate letter to sound correspondence and promote consistent use of the school’s scheme – ‘Sounds-Write’.  Sounds-Write is a whole class inclusive scheme exposing all children to the learning.  The school employs a range of strategies to close the gap, including precision teaching, web-based interventions, additional Sounds-Write sessions and daily reading with the lowest 20%.

Children are expected to read at home (and are encouraged to do so by our ‘Reading 60’ initiative, in which children can ‘win’ a book from the headteacher after every sixty home reads) and the school reading scheme (made up from Sounds-Write Dandelion Readers and Rising Stars) is carefully matched, in the first instance, to children’s phonic phases.  As children become more fluent, we help them make book choices, related to their interest and ensure that questioning is carefully scaffolded through the use of a range of questioning styles.  Ensuring children have the cultural capital and experiences to become engrossed and immersed in reading is vital.   This is achieved by selecting specific texts to build upon children’s knowledge and understanding of the world and thus help them to make connections to ideas within texts.  Children have the opportunity to visit the school library weekly and the local library termly. 

All children in Key Stage 2 have at least fifteen minutes of independent reading time each day, and all classes are read to at the end of each day – either a class novel or a high quality picture book.

Developing a sense of awe and wonder, through selection of appropriate texts, which promote cultural and moral themes, is core and embedded across the curriculum.

In order to develop reading for meaning, we teach all the reading strands from the National Curriculum as follows:

  • Decoding
  • Retrieving/recording information
  • Summarising
  • Inference
  • Predictions
  • Identifying and explaining information
  • Meaning and its enhancements
  • Comparisons within and across texts

Professional research and analysis of children’s outcomes has led the school to adopting a whole school reading strategy, from year three to six, which progressively deepens children’s knowledge and understanding of these elements, through the consistent use of reading journals and access to high quality texts. This allows children to develop ‘book talk’ and explain, retrieve, interpret and summarise their learning across a wide variety of narrative and non-narrative texts.

Shared reading of whole class texts is consistent across school and takes place at least three times a week.  This gives teachers opportunity to use a ‘sub-conscious’ voice and model characteristics of an effective reader, particularly questioning authorial intent, use of vocabulary and tone. Moreover, teachers engage children by modelling effective story-telling techniques including intonation and pace. 

Wherever possible, children’s vocabulary is expanded and enhanced as part of shared, guided and individual reading.

Planning incorporates performance poetry, drama and debating opportunities in order to hook children and develop empathy.

The reading environment is planned to engage and promote a range of books (to include high quality authors), with a strong emphasis on parental partnerships. Reading areas are well stocked, well maintained and inviting across school to model demonstrably that this is a place where reading is valued.  The children take part in termly reading buddy sessions across school, from F1 to year 6.



On-going formative assessment takes place within each reading session against the assessment focuses.  This includes: teacher observations, questioning and discussions. These outcomes are fed forward into timely teacher intervention and subsequent planning to ensure gaps in knowledge are closed and progress is not limited.

Summative end of term assessments are used to track progress and to identify gaps in the following reading strands, as follows:

  • Inferences with evidence
  • Retrieval
  • Words in context
  • Summarise main ideas
  • Enhanced meaning
  • Comparisons within a text
  • Related content

Outcomes from end of term assessments are used to identify gaps in knowledge and will inform future planning.  Pupil progress will also identify precise actions and objectives for targeted focus children, including the lowest 20% who are not likely to meet end of year expectations and/or not making expected progress. 

We recognise that quality first teaching in reading is the essential first step in improving outcomes for all children.  With this in mind, we ensure that teachers and teaching assistants are kept up to date on the latest initiatives.  Staff subject knowledge and pedagogy is developed through training (both external providers and ‘in-house’), monitoring and using the existing expertise of our staff.