At the heart of our curriculum is the teaching, promotion and encouragement of regular reading. Reading is key to accessing the whole curriculum, and through a variety of teaching strategies and techniques, children are given plentiful opportunities to become fluent, confident pupils who choose to pick up a book to both learn new things and read for pleasure. Reading is regularly promoted through our Dojo site and this is often used as a platform to share stories with the children. This way, all children can always have access to stories to enjoy.
Reading for pleasure is promoted and encouraged in many ways:
- Reading across the curriculum with WOW days/ themed days with visits and visitors linked to the whole class text and termly theme or topic;
- Hands-on and ‘sticky learning’ linked to the whole class text;
- Role-play and debates in other areas of the curriculum;
- Regular one to one reading with a volunteer reader from the Beanstalk charity, the class teacher or TA, as required;
- Daily story time for younger readers and class novels for older children;
- Regular Dojo stories to model reading fluency and to promote a love of reading;
- Weekly visits and shared stories in our school library as well as Y6 Librarians;
- Links with Stoke Reads as well as our local libraries through The Little Library Van and other initiatives, such as Book Start in the Early Years;
- Reading Buddies;
- Reading and book displays outside of the library;
- Whole-school celebrations such as our book fair, Advent Book Boxes, World Book Day, National Poetry Day and ‘Fall in Love with a Book’ day for Valentine’s Day each year;
- An inviting reading area within each classroom;
- Comprehension activities including VIPERS and other questioning techniques;
- Whole class guided reading through the use of challenging and quality texts;
- Focus on understanding of language through our Word of the Day/ Word of the Week;
- The use of picture books from Nursery through to Year 6;
- Book clubs, phonics breakfast clubs and after school reading boosters.
All children have the opportunity to visit the school Library on a weekly basis. Children are encouraged to read for pleasure at home and at school. We have Year 6 librarians who are responsible for the daily care of the library so that it is a welcoming space for children to read in. Sneyd Academy also collaborates with the local library and invites them in to speak to both children and parents. The sessions begin as early as Nursery where reading for enjoyment is promoted through the use of the library and the many events that it runs. An initiative that is welcomed by children from the EYFS is the ‘Little Library Van’ that pays the children an annual visit to encourage positive reading habits; and again parents are invited to share this experience also.
As well as our library links, the children have many other things on offer to them at our academy. After school, we have a variety of reading clubs or phonics breakfast clubs which provide our children with further stimulating and purposeful experiences across the reading curriculum. Over the course of the academic year, we invite parents/carers into school for workshops based on phonics, Bug Club and how to help your child with reading at home. These are always well received by our families at home. Moreover, family learning workshops often have a reading focus which enables our children to embed their skills at in the home environment.
Every year, we plan for a theatre company to come into school and perform particular productions which link to the children’s learning in the reading of traditional stories as they perform a pantomime for our children. Reading is celebrated at every opportunity: our World Book Day celebrations are enjoyed by children and staff, Fall in Love with a Book activities inspire our children to read and share stories with their peers and we also take part in National Poetry Day as well as the opportunity to win an Advent Book Box.