At Shakespeare Infant school we use the Oxford Reading Tree Scheme to help us to teach the children to read. Our books are organised into colour bands and the children progress through these as they develop their skills. Each week the children share books in class, and take one home to practise. We also have a selection of books in each class which the children choose for home reading.
We encourage all children to read at least three books each week and reward them when they do.
All children have a reading diary which they keep in their book bag. Teachers write a comment in the diary each time they share a book with the child and a weekly reading target.
We introduce phonics through The Jolly Phonics Programme, Letters and Sounds (Phase 1-4) and practise cued articulation. We then continue to follow the 'Letters and Sounds' principles and practice of high quality phonics through teaching Phase 5 in Year 1 (with revision of previous phrases where required) . In Year Two the majority of pupils are confident enough to recall all of the 44 common grapheme-phoneme correspondences and are able to read hundreds of words independently. In Phase 6, work on word patterns and spelling helps children to understand more about the structure of words to consolidate their knowledge of phonics. As pupils learn new phonemes throughout the school, these are taken home for extra practise. Phonics is taught as a step towards word recognition - the automatic reading of all words -both decodable and tricky), which is our ultimate goal!
Key words for reading, writing and spelling are introduced weekly in each year group. The children learn to sound out and read words using their robot arms.
Each class has a book area which is visually stimulating and contains a selection of high quality books which encourage the children to read for pleasure.
Our school library is well stocked and organised, with a range of high quality books. We organise weekly class visits when the children have an opportunity to browse and select a book to borrow. A number of our year 2 children have been trained as librarians, and have opportunities to help with the looking after of the library and with the selection of books from the mobile library van.
We use a cursive writing script and teach the children to form letters using the correct formation. The children are given opportunities to practise their skills and earn a bronze, silver and gold award in each year group.