Reading and Phonics

"The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you'll go." Dr. Seuss

Learning to read is the most important thing your child will learn at our school. Everything else depends on it, so we put as much energy as we possibly can into making sure that every single child learns to read as quickly as possible.  We want all children to love reading – and to want to read for themselves. This is why we put our efforts into making sure they develop a love of books as well as simply learning to read. 

Early reading at Queensgate

We are focussed on teaching our youngest children to learn to read by cracking the phonetic code. To do this, we consistently follow the ReadWriteInc Phonics approach to the teaching of Phonics across EYFS and Key Stage 1.  Please see the videos below for more information about Read Write Inc.

How Phonics is taught at Queensgate 

At Queensgate Primary School, the systematic teaching of Phonics is taught using ReadWriteInc throughout EYFS and KS1. Phonics is delivered through daily sessions and is adapted to cater to where the children are in their learning journey of Phonics. Children who also need to continue developing their Phonics skills will do so into KS2.

Year 1 Phonics check results

   2021/22: 97% (National average 76%)

   2022/23: 94% (National average 79%)

Reading at Queensgate 

Reading for pleasure and enjoyment is a key element of our reading programme throughout school. The library, which sits at the heart of our school, contains a wealth of reading materials from Non- Fiction to Fiction. The children have weekly library sessions where they spend time selecting and reading books they wish to take home and share.  The school recognises and values the significant role of parents in further developing reading skills.

Quality texts are used as hooks into learning across the curriculum. A rich diet of books from modern classics to contemporary fiction along with high interest non-fiction texts are used to engage our children into new areas of learning.

National book events such as ‘World Book Day’ are also celebrated, alongside visits from authors and poets.


Author visit from Rob Biddulph  - Odd Dog Out creator

How we teach reading @ Queensgate Primary School

Reading is a core skill that allows children access to all areas of the enriched curriculum, and is in fact an essential and rewarding life skill. Books are placed at the heart of every topic, and reading is integral to everyday school life.

In Nursery, pupils take home a book from our Library to share with Parents. Nursery children will begin the ReadWrite Inc phonics programme in the Summer term before Reception.

From Reception to Year 2, sound cards, sound blending resources or decodable books are sent home each week. This encourages the children to practise the phonic skills they have been learning recently in school. Library books are also sent home to allow children to share a range of text types and develop their reading for pleasure.

Key stage 2   

Here at Queensgate, we use a whole-class reading approach where rich and challenging texts are at the centre of our practice. An range of reading skills are taught alongside the text which provide the children with the skills to comprehend and understand a variety of genres.     

Why this approach?

•             It is a focused approach where reading skills are explicitly taught.

•             It expands pupils' vocabulary and deepens their understanding of the texts they are reading.

•             Children are able to access rich and challenging texts, with the opportunity to learn from each other and discuss different perspectives.

•             This approach enables verbal discussions and written responses.

•             This approach increases the children’s stamina for reading.

•             These lessons focus on the core reading skills such as summarising, sequencing, retrieval, inference, prediction and vocabulary.

By Key Stage 2, children should ideally be a fluent and confident reader. At this stage, they still need to continue to read daily at home. Additional support is available for those children who require this in their reading journey.

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