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Reading and Phonics

At St Maria Goretti School, we first and foremost encourage all our children to have a love of reading and books as we believe that these are the foundations to becoming a successful and proficient reader. It is crucial that we nurture this passion for reading from a very early age, through providing our children with exciting and engaging reading materials, seeing good reading role models at school and home and through being listened to read and being read to on a regular basis. Therefore the partnership between home and school is invaluable.

Image result for inspirational quotes about reading        Image result for inspirational quotes about reading        

Learning Journey for Reading Years 1-6

Reading in Foundation Stage and Key Stage One


In Foundation Stage


Children in Key Stage One are taught to read using various different strategies. In class they will be learning phonics, sight words and strategies to read unknown words, through lots of high quality shared reading. During teacher led guided reading sessions, children will work on further developing these important reading skills as well as developing their comprehension and understanding of what they have read through discussion and questioning. Children also have a home reading book which they bring home with them each day. When parents have listened to their child read, they write a comment in the accompanying reading diary. Reading books can be changed when a child has finished their book. As much as possible children are listened to read at school by Teaching Assistants and volunteers however, in order to make good progress, it is imperative that this reading continues at home. Children are also encouraged to choose their own book from our school library, exciting class reading corners and have the opportunity to listen to their teacher, or visitors to their class, reading a story aloud to them. 

At St Maria Goretti, we use a variety of schemes, including Rigby Star, PM Starters, Story World and Oxford Reading Tree to provide a wide breadth of text types. 

Reading in Key Stage Two


In Key Stage Two children will becoming more confident readers and our aim is to continue nurturing a love of reading but also to give them a deeper understanding of a text. Children will continue to participate in guided reading sessions with their class teacher however more emphasis is given to developing the skills of inference and deduction, through questioning and comprehension activities. We use 'active reading' strategies and teach children to become reading detectives. All children in Key Stage Two have a guided reading activity book where they complete a focused task related to the text they are reading. On occasion, children will bring their guided reading books home so please ensure that they are looked after properly and are returned back to school.


In addition to the guided reading session children in Key Stage Two will progress through the reading book bands, taking books home to share with their families. We ask that you listen to your child read every day and encourage them to use their reading detective strategies as well as engaging in book talk with them about what they have read. Some children require a little more support with their reading than others therefore reading interventions strategies, such as 1:1 reading,  BRP (Better Reading Partners) and IDL (Individual Dyslexia Support) are also used in school.


There are a variety of schemes that are used in Key Stage Two, including Treetops (Greatest stories by Michael Morpurgo, Myths and Legends, Time Chronicles, Classics and Graphic Novels), Chucklers Project X, Infact (Non-fiction) and Ginn pocket books.


Each classroom has a reading corner and children are encouraged to borrow books which they can, with permission, take home.  All children have the opportunity to visit the library at lunchtimes where, Mrs Snape and the Year 6 prefects, run various reading activities. The school also runs the FBA (Fantastic Book Award) for pupils in Year 6 where children read a variety of books and then have to complete tasks related to the text before deciding on which is the best. 



In Reception and Key Stage 1 children take part in a fast and pacey 20 minute phonics session each day. The children are grouped into phases and our teachers follow the guidance set out in the Letters and Sounds phonics resource. Through these interactive and fun phonics sessions where staff use games, songs and actions, we aim to build on the children’s speaking and listening skills as well as preparing them for learning to read by developing and using their phonic knowledge.


Year 1 Phonics Screening Check

All children in Year 1 do the Phonics Screening Check in June.  Should children not make the standard in Year 1 they redo the Phonics Screening check in Year 2. In 2016 the Phonics Screening check for Year 1 children and those Year 2 children needing to redo the check, will take place the week beginning 13th June.

Please ensure that your child is in school this week.


For more information about phonics and how you can help your child at home, please click on the links below.