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At Ford Primary School, we believe that success at reading is key to unlocking the rest of the curriculum. As a basis, we follow the aims outlined in the National Curriculum. We prioritise reading to ensure that children are equipped with the skills they need to access the curriculum as a whole. All our children are encouraged to read widely across both fiction and non-fiction to develop their knowledge of themselves and the world in which they live, to establish an appreciation and love of reading, and to gain knowledge across the curriculum.

Reading widely and often increases pupils’ vocabulary because they encounter words they would rarely hear or use in everyday speech. Reading also feeds pupils’ imagination and opens up a treasure-house of wonder and joy for curious young minds. It is our aim that, by the end of their primary education, where appropriate, all pupils are able to read fluently, with confidence, and comprehend text in any subject they meet in their forthcoming secondary education.



At Ford Primary School, our teaching of reading focuses on developing pupils’ competence in both the word reading and comprehension (both listening and reading) dimensions. To begin with, in the EYFS, children are taught phonics daily, using a synthetic phonics programme (Read, Write Inc.) to deliver the National Curriculum. Phonics is emphasised in the early teaching of reading from Nursery onwards. More information about our approach towards the teaching of phonics can be found on the phonics section of our curriculum page.


Good comprehension draws from linguistic knowledge (of vocabulary and grammar) and on knowledge of the world. Once children have graduated from RWI, they begin whole class reading sessions using high quality texts of different genres that reflect their experiences, but also broaden their horizons. Vocabulary underpins children’s understanding of the text and therefore we focus on five tier 2 words a week which have been preselected from their text to support the children’s development and understanding. Through a variety of games across the week, these words are revisited to support their long term retention. To increase children’s fluency, teachers explicitly teach choral reading, echo reading, paired reading and model reading to support children with pace, clarity and accuracy. This is practised daily throughout the week, re-reading the same extract of text rotating across fiction, non-fiction and poetry across each term.


We use a watch me, help me, show me gradual release approach to model to children how to answer comprehension questions based around Vocabulary, Inference, Prediction, Explain, Retrieval, Summarise. Children become confident readers by following the Steps To Success which provide them with the strategy to independently access a range of progressive questions.


All of our Key Stage 2 children, and some of our competent readers in Key Stage 1, take part in the Accelerated Reader (AR) programme. Our children regularly use the AR Star testing software to check their progress in reading and their ZPD book levels will be adjusted accordingly. We have a large selection of AR books for children to choose from which are carefully levelled using the stringent AR book levelling process. This means our children will be reading engaging books which offer them the exact level of challenge they need to make optimum progress in reading. Within the school day, our teachers plan in daily opportunities for children to read their AR books and take online quizzes on them. These quizzes check children’s understanding of the books they are reading. Whole school and class-based reward initiatives are used to recognise and celebrate children who read regularly and pass their quizzes.


Children are encouraged to read for pleasure and enjoy a wide range of books. All teachers have a class reader which is read daily to the children for pleasure. The books are taken from our reading spine that has been carefully selected by use to include a wide variety of diverse genres.



At Ford Primary School we ensure that, during their time with us, our children are taught, practise and refine the skills needed to read fluently for meaning across all genres and subjects.


We carefully monitor the impact our teaching of reading has on each individual child’s progress and attainment within our lessons through live marking, questioning and discussion. We use summative assessments at the end of each full term to enable us to track progress and identify areas that need to be developed. External assessments at the end of year 6, external moderation and our internal assessments (including those carried out through our phonics programme and Accelerated Reader programme) provide detailed information about how well our reading curriculum is meeting the needs of our children and inform us of any areas of strength and also areas for development. Children’s progress in reading is also monitored by the senior leadership team during our standards days and evidence about children’s reading is investigated during our pupil progress meetings. Children’s views on their experiences and opinions about their learning and the teaching they receive are sought out by the senior leadership team as a part of standards days.