At Sacred Heart, we recognise that reading is a fundamental skill needed to ensure our pupils achieve successfully throughout their lives.  Learning to read is one of the most important things children will learn at our school. Access to almost every other area of the curriculum depends heavily on it, and as a school we strive to ensure that every single child learns to read as quickly as possible.

All pupils are encouraged to read widely across both fiction and non-fiction to develop their knowledge of themselves and the world in which they live, to establish an appreciation and love of reading, and to gain knowledge across the curriculum.  Comprehension skills develop through pupils’ experience of high-quality interactions and discussions with adults, as well as from reading and discussing a range of stories, poems and non-fiction texts.  Throughout the school, the children are taught the skills they need at a rapid pace, but our aim is that the majority of the word recognition and decoding skills are taught in EYFS and KS1 so that by the time the children begin their journey through KS2, they are fluent readers and are able to access a range of texts.  By implementing a rich, balanced and immersive curriculum, children are able to develop their understanding of how language works by looking at its patterns, structures and origins, and transfer their learning across subjects, demonstrating progression throughout the wider curriculum.

Each half term, a range of topic books are displayed around every classroom to support the development of knowledge and vocabulary about specific topics and enhance learning across the wider curriculum, simultaneously building a love of reading and satisfying a thirst for knowledge.

We want our children to love reading and to want to read for themselves. This is why we work hard to make sure children develop a love of reading as well as simply learning to read.

Reading take places in many ways across the school and the curriculum.   Every child in school has a Brain Box book which is taken home and returned to school each day.  This book includes the children’s home-school reading record in Reception and KS1 and a reading journal in KS2.  Every half term, new books are introduced to the classroom, linked to the topic the children are studying; topic books are also available from the library for children to take home to enjoy and use to enhance their learning across the curriculum.

The school and wider community play a key role in promoting reading.  Parents are invited to stay and read sessions in Reception. 

Helping Your Child to Read at Home:

There are lots of different ways you can enjoy reading with your child.

Reading to them every day:

Just before they go to bed is a good time, but not in front of the TV.
Be enthusiastic about the story, or choose another.
Allow the child to choose whenever possible. Yes, they will often choose their favourite over and over again. This is quite natural.
If you try to change the story, or leave bits out, they will tell you very quickly.

Before you read you may like to:

Read through the story yourself first. (It’s a big help if you know the story well, as it helps you to lead up to the exciting bits and encourage joining in).
Decide good places to stop and ask; “What do you think will happen next?”
Decide which pictures to stop and talk about.

During reading:

Show your enjoyment, laugh, smile, look scared, look sad, sound excited, etc.
Run your finger along the line under the words as you read.
Invite the child to turn the pages over you may need to guide their hand at first.
Talk about the pictures.  “Can you see the wolf hiding?”

Guidance: How to support your child's reading at home

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