Reading Curriculum Statement
At Cranford Park Academy we value reading as a life skill and are dedicated to enabling all children to become lifelong readers. Our aim is for our children to read a range of genres – both fiction and non-fiction - which will support and further their understanding of themselves and the world we live in. As a school, we promote the culture of reading, whereby children develop a love for reading across all subjects and are able to develop both their knowledge and comprehension skills.
As part of the English curriculum children have hour long ‘Talk for Reading’ lessons, three to four times a week. During these sessions, children are taught strategies which enable them to develop their comprehension skills such as: decoding, inference, summarising, fact retrieval, evaluating, visualising, comparing to other books and prediction. Within these lessons, children explore in depth high-end, demanding texts which help to extend both their vocabulary and their understanding.
The school has invested heavily in reading resources to aid the children’s development in reading. In EYFS and KS1, the new phonics programme (Sounds Write) has been introduced to support word reading (see phonics statement) and is already impacting by enabling more children to read confidently at an earlier stage.
From Year 2 upwards, the children are using a computer programme called ‘Accelerated Reader’ which helps teachers manage and monitor children’s independent reading practice. Children are assessed and the programme provides each child with an accurate reading age and standardised score and related targets and strategies. Accelerated Reader encourages children to read more and crucially ensures they are accessing books at an appropriate level to enable maximum progress.
Reading is promoted in and out of the school setting and children have access to numerous good quality books both within their classroom reading areas and within our well stocked school libraries. Parents have access to the online Renaissance Home Connect which promotes parental support with reading. Families also have access to myON, which is a personalised digital library that gives the children access to more books.
As a school, we believe in order to develop their reading skills, children need at least 20 minutes a day of independent reading; to support this theory, the children have DEAR– Drop Everything and Read, time. This provides the children with a time in the day to engage in a book, guided by their Accelerated Reader levels (ZPD); this system supports the children to independently identify the progress they are making. This also helps to promote the love of reading around the school. Children who are highlighted as needing further support with their reading have ‘better reading partners’ where they receive 1:1 support in improving their confidence with reading.
As well as reading independently, our aim is to give children access to quality text within and above their reading ability, where they can listen, engage and discuss, so we dedicate time during our daily ‘3 o’clock read’ for teachers and children to share a book together.
At CPA, we work hard at promoting a love of reading. Books are celebrated and promoted and at every opportunity, teachers talk with enthusiasm about reading. We are developing an environment that plays an important part in building a reading culture at the school.
Our aim is for all our children to leave their primary education as confident and fluent readers and to embed a love for reading which will be sustained into adulthood.