Bourn Church of England Primary Academy

English:

Reading and Phonics

The overarching aims of the Reading Curriculum at Bourn Primary are to teach children to read fluently and independently and to love stories and books. We value reading as a key life skill and are dedicated to enabling our pupils to become lifelong readers. Good reading skills are the foundation to academic success as well as enabling reading to become an enjoyable activity that can boost mental well-being. 

Our aim is that pupils leave this school able to read fluently and with confidence. In order to do this, we begin to provide additional support for children as soon as they begin to fall behind their peers. Our vision that each one of us is capable of great things drives our early intervention programmes, which include 1-1 TA support and small group reading interventions. We prioritise TA support in Key Stage 1 to give all children the best chance of leaving Key Stage 1 at the expected level.  Early intervention phonics support starts in Foundation Stage, where children have an additional phonics session each day if they need further support.

Storytime Phonics at Bourn 

At Bourn, we use Storytime Phonics: a systematic synthetic phonics programme designed to teach phonics using a multitude of well-known and well-loved children’s books. Each lesson is clearly planned and introduces a new phoneme. The scheme includes daily lesson plans, 64 story books through which phonemes are taught, printed resources, and 'caption action' cards. Children are introduced to Common Exception words through the Tricky Troll and learn to use phonics to sound out 'alien' words through the story of Beegu. The scheme teaches phonics to the end of Phase 5 through systematic, daily lessons with a range of multi-sensory activities. Independent activities ensure that the children's focus is on learning the phoneme rather than on the activity itself. 

  

Children read books from the Collins Big Cat scheme which are carefully matched to the progression of phonemes/graphemes taught in the Storytime Phonics scheme. These books all have key phonemes/graphemes at the start of the book, which the child reads with the adult before reading the book. 

Accelerated Reader at Bourn

In Key Stage 2, children's reading is tracked through the Accelerated Reader system, which enables teachers to monitor the genre and challenge level of books they choose, and to monitor their progress, intervening with additional support where this indicated. Children are assessed to determine their reading ability, and can then choose from a range of recommended titles at their reading level. Once they have finished a book, they complete a simple quiz to check that they have read and understood it, and then are given a further list of recommended titles to choose from. Children build their reading skills and stamina, and we ensure that children are reading books at just the right level for them - early readers as well supported and those at a higher level of ability are encouraged to read books that really engage and challenge them. Teachers can track children’s progress book by book, and tailor recommendations to a child’s individual needs. 

A School That Loves Reading 

We are currently in the process of developing our amazing Bourn Book Bus, which will house our fiction library, (see the Gallery on the Events page). With a new Library Management System, children will be able to borrow and return books, scanning them in and out. 

Other initiatives to increase the profile of reading across the school and develop a whole-scale reading culture include Reading Buddies, increased communication with parents to highlight the importance of reading at home and promoting a love of reading by engaging with reading events, such as author visits. 

Our aim is that our pupils become competent readers who can recommend books to their peers, enjoy a wide range of reading genres and can participate in discussions about books, including evaluating authors’ use of language and its impact. Pupils leave Bourn having had exposure to a range of texts including up-to-date literature as well as studying a range of classic books, poems and authors. Our carefully mapped Reading Spine including class texts helps us to achieve this. Click here to explore our Reading Spine in more detail.

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. Children are exposed to a range of different, and often complex texts, during which they can demonstrate understanding and develop their range of vocabulary. Children are read to daily by their class teacher and enjoy a series of class novels throughout the academic year. Independent reading records are also used by all pupils in Key Stage 1 to track reading inside and outside school. 

In Key Stage 2, children's reading is tracked through the Accelerated Reader system, which enables teachers to monitor the genre and challenge level of books they choose, and to monitor their progress, intervening with additional support where this indicated. Other initiatives to increase the profile of reading across the school and develop a whole-scale reading culture include Reading Buddies, increased communication with parents to highlight the importance of reading at home and promoting a love of reading by engaging with reading events, such as author visits. 

Teaching focuses on developing pupils’ decoding, fluency and comprehension (both listening and reading); different teaching approaches are required for each.

Pupils regularly complete reading comprehensions (in a range of subjects). Good comprehension involves a variety of skills such as: inference, knowledge of vocabulary, predictions, retrieval and summarising. Comprehension skills develop through pupils’ experience of high-level material, high-quality discussion as well as from reading and discussing a range of stories, poems and non-fiction texts

Curriculum Intent - Reading

Reading Curriculum Progression

Curriculum Intent - Phonics