Our Intent

There is so much enjoyment to be had from reading to and with your child and we believe passionately that reading as frequently as possible has enormous benefits to children’s future happiness and success. It’s also such a lovely thing to do together, as parent and child. Why not try a book from one of our lists of recommended reads?

At St Oswald’s C of E Primary School, reading is woven throughout every element of our curriculum. We recognise how essential reading skills are across everything we do, and therefore we put reading at the very top of our priorities and aspire for every child to leave us a confident, skilled reader who enjoys reading every day.

It is our intention to ensure that by the end of their primary education, all pupils are able to read fluently and with confidence, in any subject, ahead of their forthcoming secondary education.

We intend for every pupil to enjoy a wide range of reading experiences and encourage children to flourish by providing them with the inspiration which comes through reading a great story, or by finding out about the things which interest you. We encourage children to become independent readers; through both reading for pleasure and also reading for information using reference books and the internet. By doing this we also hope to develop in our children a lifelong love of reading. In addition to their National Curriculum focused reading skill and phonics lessons, we provide them with a core reading spine of handpicked books to read during their time with us; we introduce them to authors during our book weeks; we choose inspirational authors to find out about during collective worship and we encourage them to write for others to read. We are committed to providing vocabulary rich reading material in every subject, and this is evident through all aspects of the curriculum.

At St Oswald’s, it is our intent to ensure children flourish in these ways through their acquisition of strong reading skills:

    • Be good communicators.
      We provide opportunities for children to share their love of reading by reading aloud in class and assemblies. Children also share their enjoyment of a text by discussing it with others. We use Guided Reading to deepen their knowledge and develop key reading skills.
    • Be enthusiastic, lifelong learners.
      We develop in pupils a love of books and high-quality literature that will not only support their learning across the curriculum, but also extend beyond the classroom environment and enrich their lives. We explicitly teach reading skills throughout the school to continually develop children’s understanding and enjoyment of texts.
    • Understand how to keep themselves safe and be respectful in their communities.
      We expose the children to challenging concepts, different cultures and ways of life through the books they study: teaching them to value and celebrate diversity in culture and language.
    • Develop their talents.
      To use what they have learned as readers to influence their writing. As orators we foster in pupils the confidence, desire and ability to express their views and opinions both orally and in writing.
    • Be independent, resilient learners who enjoy challenges.
      We expose children to a range of challenging texts (age appropriate) and develop their ability to increase their fluency and confidence in reading
    • Be respect for other views and cultures, which they develop understanding of through reading a range of culturally diverse texts.
    • Be reflective readers, who review a book and share with others how that book affected them and what it made them see differently.
    • Be confident in the functionality of their reading by approaching new skills and tasks feeling happy that they can read the instructions, follow timetables, choose from menus etc.
    • Be performers; using their reading skills to access parts in plays and take part in poetry recitals and songs.
    • Be inspired to write words for others to read and seek out literature of their own choosing, to follow their heroes by reading their words.

We intend that they access these skills through strong, daily teaching of the skills required to become successful readers. These include:

    • Phonic decoding
    • Fluency with expression and clarity
    • Understanding vocabulary
    • Understanding of sentence structure and punctuation
    • Comprehension, inference and implication
    • Obtaining information quickly
    • Understanding key features of different texts
    • Critical reflection interpretation of authors’ language, meaning thoughts and feelings


Reading Curriculum
Our reading curriculum is designed to ensure all children know that reading is an open door to all other learning opportunities. They understand that reading frequently makes them a good reader, and being a good reader expands their world.

Our children will develop new strategies, learn new words, explore different genres, discover unknown authors, experience unfamiliar settings and unpick hidden meanings. By continually reflecting on their own reading journey, our children will not only be able to read, but most importantly, will want to read.

We will do this through:

    • Developing children’s competence in both word reading and comprehension.
    • Prioritising reading for our early and developing readers.
    • Ensuring Quality First Teaching, where every child is given the opportunity to excel.
    • Fostering an appreciation and love of reading for all our children.
    • Developing curious learners who will confidently ask questions, express views and engage in a range of high quality texts.
    • Ensure all children will transition to high school as enthusiastic, fluent and confident readers.

Reading Spine
Each Year group has a set of 6 texts that make up our reading spine. The composition of the books / texts chosen for the spine underpin (where possible) the themes within our half termly class topics. The text extracts used for VIPERS sessions link with the whole class reading spine and will cover the following genres:

    • Fiction
    • Non-fiction
    • Poetry

Reading Skills Sessions
All children will have dedicated sessions teaching reading skills throughout EYFS to Year 6.

    • Pre-reading tasks. Discussion about the book cover/blurb/an image related to the book/props/video/a selection of interesting words from the book. Opportunities to predict/think creatively about a text & generate excitement before reading the text.
    • First Reading. Children given opportunity to read a text independently – building reading stamina. Could be a page, an extract from a book, a chapter or a whole book. Focus on ‘hoovering’ new words – magpie to books/working walls to use again.
    • Second Reading. Reading modelled with children following. Discussion generated after second reading. Focus stem questions – from Reading Vipers. Whole Class Comprehensions. Class reads supported by No Nonsense Literacy and Literacy Shed Plus. Your plan could be for a week, looking at an extract, or for a half term looking at an entire book. Use menu of approaches for activity ideas.

Our learners are assessed regularly and closely tracked. Formative assessment should be carried out regularly using teacher assessments. Summative assessment should be carried out half-termly using Pixl. Assessment should inform future planning sequences.

Teachers should use assessment to ascertain which children require additional intervention. Children working below Age-Related Expectations should be accessing additional reading support. Pixl Therapies can be used for certain specific learning needs and/or another specific intervention. All interventions must be tracked and evaluated.

Reading Books

EYFS and Key Stage 1

IN EYFS and Key Stage 1 all reading books are phonetically decodable. Pupils are individually assessed on their phonics knowledge and each child is given a book that is accessible for them at their level, so that they can read it and enjoy it. Reading books are changed twice weekly and we follow the ‘Three Read Approach’

Read 1
Decoding the book
Children use their phonics knowledge to decode the words on the page. The focus is solely on this rather than the comprehension and understanding.
Read 2
Reading for speed and fluency
This is another opportunity for the pupils to apply their phonic knowledge but slightly quicker. Pupils should recognise some of the words the second time round. Adults should model prosody (intonation, expression, pausing and phrasing) when they read and children apply this skill.
Read 3
This time, the pupils read the book again and should be quite familiar with the words. Ask your child what they think about the story and what is happening as they read: do they understand what they are reading? Can they retell it in their own words?

We encourage parents to supplement our home reading scheme with a variety of books including fiction, non-fiction and poetry to further develop their love for reading and provide a wide breadth of experiences.

In Key Stage 2 we use Accelerated Reader. This is a web based programme that helps hone students’ reading skills with practise which in turn encourages growth and also helps to develop a love of reading. In order to determine the child’s reading level they take the ‘STAR reading’ Assessment. This is computer based reading assessment uses computer-adaptive technology. At the end of the assessment the child will be given a Zone of Proximal Development score (ZPD). The Zone of Proximal Development (ZPD) defines the readability range within which the child should read to best develop their reading, whilst avoiding frustration. All of our books are levelled using the ATOS readability formula. It is a formula designed to guide pupils to appropriate-level books. ATOS takes into account the most important predictors of text complexity—average sentence length, average word length, and word difficulty level. Using Accelerated Reader gives teachers the information they need to monitor children’s reading practise and make informed decisions to guide their future learning.

Reading For Pleasure
At St Oswald’s we would like all of our children to develop a lifelong love of reading. In order to do this, we need to foster a desire to read and encourage engagement at all opportunities. Teachers will read to the class daily, modelling a passion for reading and a sharing love of books. Can you be the significant reader in your children’s lives? Can you share new recommendations? Can you encourage discussions about favourite books and authors? Will your children remember you as a teacher who loves reading?

All children from Reception to Year 6 will experience:

    • DEAR time (Drop Everything and Read) – dedicated time for ‘reading for pleasure’
    • Visits to the School Library / Local Library.
    • ‘Reading buddies’ – Reception to Year 5 will be paired with a class from another Year group and will get together on a regular basis to enjoy shared reading time.
    • Weekly reading groups for pupil premium across school to encourage ‘reading for pleasure’

Celebrating Reading

    • Celebrating reading achievements– when children finish a book they complete a review to share with others. This could be a written review displayed in the classroom or a recorded review posted to their Seesaw page. It’s important that these recommendations are shared with the class – we want to create a ‘buzz’ around reading – creating ‘greedy readers!’
    • Weekly dojos given for the amount of times children have read.
    • ‘Reading Rocks’ Collective Worship – Whole school celebration of reading achievements, sharing recommended reads and learning about authors.
    • ‘50 Recommended Reads’ for each year group are sent out at the beginning of each academic term.
    • Half termly recommendations for ‘Great Reads’ from each class (Newsletter to be sent home / uploaded to website and social media)


Through quality first teaching of systematic phonics and reading skills, our aim is for children to become fluent and confident readers who can apply their knowledge and experience to a range of texts throughout their school journey. As they develop their own interest in books, a deep love of literature across a range of genres, cultures and styles is enhanced. By the time children leave St Oswald’s C of E Primary School, they are competent readers who can recommend books to their peers, have a thirst for reading a range of genres and participate in discussions about books. They can also read books to enhance their knowledge and understanding of all subjects in the curriculum.

Pupil Voice
What our pupils say about reading. Through discussion and feedback, children talk enthusiastically about reading and understand the importance of this subject. They can also talk about books and authors that they have enjoyed and can make reading recommendations.

Reading & Phonics Outcomes
At the end of each year we expect the children to have achieved Age Related Expectations (ARE) for their year group. Some children will have progressed further and achieved greater depth (GD). Children who have gaps in their knowledge receive appropriate support and intervention.

Quality of Teaching & Learning Across School
Termly learning walks demonstrating evidence in knowledge. Pupils can make links between texts and the different themes and genres within them. They can recognise similarities and differences. Pupils also demonstrate evidence in skills Children are taught reading progressively and at a pace appropriate to each individual child. Teachers subject knowledge ensure that skills taught are matched to National Curriculum objectives.

Parent Voice
What our parents say about reading.

Staff Voice
What our staff say about reading.