English : Reading
At Handcross, we just love reading and writing!
During the school day, children may read in small groups or 1-to-1 with an adult, with a peer, as a whole class or even as a whole key-stage during one of our "author assemblies". They may listen to audio CDs of favourite books and enjoy 'story time' with their teacher. Whatever the reading activity, we place a strong emphasis on high quality 'book talk' whereby all children are able to discuss and unpick carefully chosen, high quality texts. We expose children to a wide range of texts, styles and genres, including stories, non-fiction and poetry and both classic and contemporary texts. We use a variety of reading schemes and books linked to current interests and topics to support the children's reading development. We believe that, at all levels, good quality reading is invaluable for good quality writing!
Our brand new 'Ladybird Library' opened in 2019. We have a wealth of exciting, engaging books for children to look at and enjoy, including books linked to every topic taught across the school. Children love their visits to Ladybirds, sharing books with friends and borrowing them to read at home! The library also provides a calm, quiet space for group work.
Here are Year 2 exploring the library!
PHONICS : Read, Write, Inc.
We follow the Read Write Inc. programme to teach phonics, reading and spelling in the early stages. It is also used for children in older year groups who have significant difficulties in learning the basic skills of reading and spelling.
Read Write Inc. is widely used in many schools and has proved to be hugely successful in getting children to read and write quickly and easily. The programme is taught daily in a very lively, highly interactive manner and children enjoy their sessions. They are taught in small groups, closely matched in ability, and make very good progress. The children are continually assessed so that as soon as they have outgrown one group, they move on to the next.
Parents are kept up-to-date with the sounds their child is learning in phonics via a weekly homework sheet. To learn more about how to pronounce each of the sounds taught as part of the Read, Write, Inc. programme, click here.
Many of our 'take home' books in classrooms and in Ladybird Library are compatible with the Accelerated reader programme used within school. We use the programme to assess the children's reading age and zone of proximal development to ensure that children have access to the most appropriate books to support and challenge them. When the children have read the books, they can use an iPad to complete comprehension quizzes to ensure clear understanding of the text. The children love to monitor their progress and earn points!
Lexia Reading is an intervention programme to help children who have gaps in their reading development and with their ability to comprehend texts. Lexia sessions are delivered in small groups by trained staff. As part of their individual Lexia programme, children use an iPad to practice key skills and then have targeted sessions with an adult.
Special Events and Rewards
To celebrate our love of reading and to emphasise how important it is, children are rewarded for consistently reading at home. We also plan special events throughout the year to promote a love of reading. These include World Book Day celebrations, book fairs and after-school events like "Stories and Snuggles" in which children share books and a mug of hot chocolate with family, friends and teachers. We also organise visits and workshops with inspirational children's authors, such as M.P.Robertson, Vashti Hardy, Miriam Moss and Maria Farrer.
Badgers celebrating World Book Day! "Stories and Snuggles" with Miss Ralph
We always love it when it's Book Fair time! A visit from the wonderful author of 'Brightstorm', Vashti Hardy