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Our Reading Curriculum

At St James' CE Infant and Nursery School, children will learn to read with confidence, fluency and understanding, providing them with the skills required to achieve a lifetime of enjoyment through reading.


Children read in school independently, in guided groups and as a shared class session. They listen to adults and other children read, taking part in paired reading with their own and other age groups.


Our reading aims are:

• To promote reading for pleasure.

• To promote confidence and positive attitudes to reading through access to a wide range of literature.

• To develop phonetic skills which lead to blending and reading accurately and fluently.

• To broaden their vocabulary.

• To develop comprehension skills, and enable children to analyse what they read and to participate in discussion and debate about texts.

• To encourage good home/school partnerships.

• To monitor each child’s progress through the use of a range of assessment strategies e.g.  on-going reading observations, Monthly Read, Write, Inc assessments, NFER tests etc.

• To support those children who require additional support with their reading.


Many activities take place which promote pre-reading skills. Children become aware of print in their environment and match pictures and words.


Language comprehension is developed by talking and reading to the children with carefully selected books from our reading spine or wider reading blanket. 


Children are introduced to story sacks, allowing them to interact with the text in a variety of ways including orally composing a story, using puppets to re-tell, playing games and generally developing a love of books.


Initially, as children learn to read, they are given a picture book with no words with the intention that they will share the book and take part in a conversation generated by the pictures. Gradually as the children's knowledge of letters and sounds develop they begin to phonetically decode words. The first books given are fully phonetically decodable.


Our reading books are organised into coloured book bands. Children are assessed regularly and move onto the next book band when their fluency and understanding show that they are ready. Children move through the reading scheme until they reach the required standard to become a free-reader, choosing a book to read from our well-stocked school or class libraries. In addition to a personalised reading book, children are able to take a book home from the school library. For more information on phonics please see Phonics and Early Reading section on the website. 


Children in EYFS and KS1 have daily guided reading sesions in small groups through the Read, Write, Inc programme. This also means that their reading teacher is able to hear them individually. Children identified as needing extra support by the Reading Leader, are heard to read on a one to one basis more frequently.  Where children have been identified as not making expected progress, they will read daily with a TA and take part in the RWI Fast Track prgramme wiuth trained staff.  


From Reception to Year 2 we use the Literacy Curriculum scheme which provides children with a high quality range of progressive books that are planned for carefully across all year groups.