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At Woodthorpe, we know that engaging children with reading from the beginning is one of the most important ways we can make a difference to our children’s life chances. Therefore, nurturing the ability to read accurately and speedily with a good understanding is core to everything that we do. We are committed to ensuring that our children progress successfully through a structured synthetic phonics programme, engage in rigorous and specific comprehension teaching, develop a life-long love of reading by being part of a positive culture of reading for pleasure across our community, and have reading opportunities that help them to understand the world’s diversity and their place within it.

We strive to enhance our reading curriculum, and we achieve this in a number of different ways. We run a whole school reading competition in which every child is invited to read at least 25 times per half term. Children also have the opportunity to enter exciting, themed reading challenges throughout the year! We celebrate reading achievements with class reading leaderboards and whole school leaderboards, and those children who have read 1 million words gain a place in our ‘Millionaire Reader’ club. We have recently introduced ‘Book Buddies’, in which shared reading across year groups takes place on special days throughout the year to enhance children’s love of reading and provide children with an opportunity to build meaningful relationships across the school.

Children have the opportunity to share their love of reading with the wider community, reading with local volunteers, and reading to members of Woodthorpe’s dementia support group. We have reading ambassadors and librarians across the school who support children to select books at the appropriate level, listen to children read, and help children complete their reading comprehension quizzes. We understand that we are responsible for exposing children to a wide range of texts, and so books are deliberately chosen to ensure increasing challenge and progression.

Each year, children will access—through story time or as a class—texts that include our five core strands so they can build cultural capital and enjoy celebrating the diverse world we live in today. All KS2 children study a Shakespeare adaptation, classic novels, and classic poetry alongside books that span authors and characters from different ethnic backgrounds and books that celebrate differences. This ensures increased cultural capital and an ambitious breadth of the curriculum.

Reading – Key knowledge & skills progression

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