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English: Reading

Welcome to our Reading Page

Here you'll find everything you need to know about reading at our school and how we value every child becoming a reader. You'll also find links to some great websites and ways to help your child at home. 

Any questions regarding the teaching of reading at our school, please don't hesitate to contact: 

Whole School Reading Challenge 2023-2024

To have as many children as possible become a member of the local library. 

Click the link below to sign up. 

Salford Libraries: Children and Families

Our vision is that children will develop a lifelong love for reading and an appreciation of a range of books. We aim for our pupils to become independent and reflective readers who can read fluently and for meaning.

Reading is essential to attainment and success across all subjects. As a school, we aim to:

  • develop an interest in and a love of books, encouraging children to become attentive listeners and independent and reflective readers

  • promote and encourage a lifelong love of reading

  • equip children with a range of reading strategies and skills in order to identify and recognise words and to develop accuracy and fluency

  • develop appreciation and understanding of and response to texts

  • enable children to utilise reading skills in order to read a range of texts for a variety of purposes and to access information and learn in other subject areas

  • provide a consistent approach to assessment to ensure that children are provided with reading experiences and opportunities at an appropriate level

We are committed to help children find enjoyment in reading and to appreciate how books can offer a window to other worlds, meet amazing characters and learn about the world they live in. We choose books with important and diverse themes that help to build on their cultural capital and knowledge.

The National Curriculum divides reading skills into two dimensions:

  • Word reading/ decoding

  • Comprehension

We recognise that both these elements are essential to success and we support the acquisition of both sets of skills through various methods. We acknowledge that these areas are clearly linked to the other aspects of English learning: speaking and listening, writing, grammar and vocabulary. We also understand that reading is a developmental process and part of life-long learning and we encourage and praise children at every stage of it.

In order to develop fluent, confident readers, we:

  • follow a systematic approach to the teaching of phonics via Little Wandle (Letters and Sounds Revised) programme 

  • discretely teach comprehension strategies through quality whole class direct teaching and reading practise work

  • actively promote and foster a love of reading

  • further develop children’s vocabulary by “magpie-ing” during English lessons, other subjects and class reader sessions

  •  make the link explicit between reading and writing through the use of quality texts

Implementation: Early Reading

In Nursery, we teach the foundations of phonics. We provide a balance of child-led and adult-led experiences for all children that meet the curriculum expectations for ‘Communication and language’ and ‘Literacy’. These include: sharing high-quality stories and poems, learning a range of nursery rhymes and action rhymes, activities that develop focused listening and attention, including oral blending and attention to high-quality language. We ensure Nursery children are well prepared to begin learning grapheme-phoneme correspondences (GPCs) and blending in Reception.

In order to develop fluent, confident readers, we start teaching phonics in Reception and throughout Year 1.

We follow the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised progression, which ensures children build on their growing knowledge of the alphabetic code, mastering phonics to read and spell as they move through school. 

We also model the application of the alphabetic code through phonics in shared reading and writing, both inside and outside of the phonics lesson and across the curriculum. We have a strong focus on language development for our children because we know that speaking and listening are crucial skills for reading and writing in all subjects. Early phonics interventions for those children needing additional support are put in place throughout Reception and Year 1, with the aim of children ‘keeping up’ rather than ‘catching up’.

We immerse our children in lots of different phonic activities throughout the day. We make phonics an intrinsic part of our "Five a Day" commitment to reading 5 stories a day to our children in EYFS and Year 1, deliberately choosing books about sounds, rhyme or alliteration. Our home reading scheme is a mixture of high quality and phonetically-decodable books. 

The phonics screening check in Year 1 identifies those children with specific learning difficulties who need extra help and support to improve their decoding skills in Year 2. Phonics interventions also occur in Y2 – Y6 for those children who still need phonics support.

For further information, please refer to our Phonics webpage for more detailed information on the progression in phonics through Reception and Year 1, detailing the graphemes that will be taught in each term.

Implementation: Reading Practice In Reception and Year 1, all children participate in reading practice sessions three times per week. These are structured to develop decoding, prosody and comprehension. Books are matched to the phonics being taught. Children who need additional support in Y2 – Y6 also take part in small group reading practice sessions at least twice a week.

Implementation: Whole Class Reading From Y3 upwards, reading skills are taught through whole class reading sessions. Year 2 begin whole class reading in the Spring Term. This is dependent on the needs of the class. 

Within these sessions, there is a clear focus on the skills and strategies our children need to become competent readers, such as: vocabulary, inference, prediction, explanation, retrieval and sequencing/summarising (VIPERS). Key skills are taught on a rolling programme; however, a vocabulary session will always precede a new text. A new text/extract is then introduced and specific skills are developed in each session.  Through summative and formative assessment, key skills may be identified as a priority for teaching and therefore given a higher percentage of teaching time.

Quality texts and extracts are chosen to challenge the children and these include fiction, non-fiction, poetry, films and songs.

Reading fluency is also taught as part of Reading Practice and Whole Class Reading Lessons using echo, choral, paired, repeated and theatrical reading. These skills are also woven into other areas of the curriculum to support children when reading beyond explicitly taught reading lessons. 

Assessment and monitoring are an integral part of the teaching and learning process and is used to:

  • provide the children with clear and regular feedback

  • assist the children and teachers in planning their next steps

  • evaluate the effectiveness of teaching

Teachers use daily formative assessment strategies to ensure that all teaching is accurate and challenging. Ongoing teacher assessment of reading informs individual and group/class reading skills for development. In addition to this, summative assessments also take place.

In Year 1, children sit a phonics assessment to identify which phonic patterns they can recognise and read. The results of this test are reported in the child's end of year report. 

In Year 2, children will have their first SATs assessment. The tests in Year 2 consist of a set of assessments conducted by the class teacher along with two reading papers.

In Years 3, 4 and 5, children are formally assessed each term using NfER assessments. These help teachers assess children’s progress and allow for the correct interventions to take place.

In Year 6, children sit further Nationally reported SATs tests. These SATs tests are more formal and consist of timed papers. The papers are sent away for marking and the results are known before the children leave primary school in July.  The results are reported in the child’s end of term report.

Further information regarding National Curriculum Tests can be found here:

Children from Year 2 have reading journals, where a range of evidence is collected that can be used to support an accurate assessment of their individual reading ability. To assess the children’s reading age, the Salford Sentence Reading Test is used in Autumn 1 and Summer 1 terms. This is used primarily for children with SEND needs and/or those children who have been identified as not making expected progress. Pupil voice shows staff which children are engaged in the reading process and these are conducted by the Reading Leads and members of SLT where appropriate. Reading Leads and SLT also monitor children’s progress in reading and ensure appropriate interventions are taking place for any pupils making less than expected progress. The link Governor for reading is updated annually on what is working well and areas for development. Areas for development are identified in an action plan written by the Reading Leads and these are linked to the school development plan.

At Beech Street, we encourage and promote a love of reading on a daily basis. Spending time developing the reading environment - book areas, displays, libraries and outdoor reading areas - plays a significant part in encouraging our children to read.

Reading Areas: All classes have library/reading areas where the children can choose from a range of high-quality fiction, non-fiction, magazines, graphic novels and newspapers. Class libraries are changed/updated on a regular basis to promote awe and wonder. Much loved books from previous years and child-chosen books may also be found in our class libraries.

The Reading Jungle: Our amazing ‘Reading Jungle’ is timetabled to ensure all year groups have access and visit regularly. We make use of our local amenities and all our children from Reception to Year 6 visit the local library on a regular basis. (Please note: Books in our jungle are currently being culled to ensure we have a range of high quality and diverse text for the children to enjoy. Our non-fiction section is also in the process of being audited.)

Daily Reading: In EYFS/Year 1, we promote reading for pleasure through our "Five a Day" commitment. In Years 1 – 6, classes have class reader that is shared daily. When choosing class readers to share out loud, staff consider the following (taken from ‘The Reading Framework 2022’):

Does the book:

  • elicit a strong response – curiosity, anger, excitement, laughter, empathy?

  • have a strong narrative that will sustain multiple readings?

  • extend children’s vocabulary?

  • have illustrations which are engaging and reflect children from all backgrounds and cultures?

  • help children connect with who they are?

  • help children to understand the lives of people whose experiences and perspectives may be different from their own?

Recommended Reading: Each Year group also has a recommended reading list of 25 books which are shared with the parents. These include fiction, non-fiction and poetry. Lists are updated annually to allow for exciting new titles, authors and current trends or themes to be included.

Class Authors: In order to increase the knowledge of authors, each year group has a class author focus. Displays in class include books written and information about the author. 

EYFS/KS1 - one author 

Y3/4 - two authors

Y5/6 - three/four authors

We want our children to leave us with a love of literature and reading.  We place a large focus on reading for enjoyment, and children throughout the school regularly participate in a variety of engaging and inspiring reading activities both in and outside of school. Celebrating National events like World Poetry Day and World Book Day are always on our events calendar.

Fancy earning yourself a Blue Peter Book Badge? Click on the badge for further details.

Reading Events at Beech Street

September: a warm welcome back and the start of our children spending time in all our updated reading areas around school. 

October Readfest: the children from EYFS to Year 6 took part in our Readfest Challenge. The children smashed their reading goals and the winners, drawn at random from all the Gold awards, had a fabulous time at Waterstones in the Trafford Centre.

Nonfiction November: a chance to delve deep into a fabulous selection of non-fiction books. Thank you for all the book and topic suggestions. 

Our recommended reads for each year group from Nursery to Year 6 include a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry. Our lists are updated annually to include new and exciting titles. Please contact your class teacher for a copy of these. 

Alternatively, check out the following websites for further ideas and inspiration. 


If you are looking for book or author recommendations based on a particular series or author, click the link below. 

Online Learning Platforms

We have access to the following online platforms. Click the icons below - these will take you directly to the website. 

Lucas  Alaina   Keira   Beau