Our approach to the teaching of reading Ward green primary school

At Ward Green, we believe a high-quality education in English will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them.

Carefully chosen literature, plays a key role in enabling pupils both to acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know. All the skills of language are essential to participating fully as a member of society; pupils, therefore, who do not learn to speak, read and write fluently and confidently are effectively disenfranchised.

Intent - The National Curriculum and LIRA

In order to build on the strong foundation formed through our early reading approach where phonics is prioritised in the early teaching of reading to beginners when they start school. It is paramount that once these skills are embedded children are exposed to comprehension skills drawing on linguistic knowledge and on knowledge of the world. In order to address this, we have developed the LIRA approach.

LIRA sessions ensure comprehension skills develop through pupils’ experience of high-quality discussion with the teacher, as well as from reading and discussing a range of stories, poems and non-fiction. We continue to develop the fluency of our readers by incorporating a variety of reading approaches including: teacher model read, partner read, volunteer read, independent read and teacher read pen-tap.

Finally, we ensure children are exposed to a balance diet of reading skills by covering age appropriate literal, inference, reader response and authorial intent objectives.

Implementation: The delivery of LIRA

Ward Green reading trackers are in place in every year group in order to build on skills progressively throughout school. Each reading tracker is segmented into the four key areas of comprehension; literal, inference, readers’ response and author’s intent.

The Ward Green trackers ensure teachers are carefully choosing age appropriate objectives and lessons are pitched correctly.

The LIRA approach takes place in years 2 to 6 where the teaching of comprehension skills is based on Literal, Inference, Readers’ response and Author’s intent questions. Through this approach pupils are supported to develop the skills needed in order to answer different types of questions. High quality texts are utilised effectively with a focus on exposing pupils to a broad range of authors and developing vocabulary.

Impact - Assessment and progress

Effective formative assessment, daily marking and feedback and adult interaction within lessons is firmly embedded into our approach to teaching and learning. All pupils are supported to develop, progress and move their learning forward through support, questioning and feedback. Pupils demonstrate the impact this has on improving their learning through editing and response.

The use of clear learning objectives and success criteria ensures pupils to understand their learning and become self-regulated learners who aspire to achieve to their full potential. The use of success criteria allows children to assess their learning independently. Pupils and teachers refer to this throughout the lesson when they are assessing the progress they have made

Reading is assessed by teachers who use the Ward Green trackers for their year groups to allocate a level and next steps for each pupil. In addition to this, two summative assessment points are scheduled within the academic year. Cross moderation occurs in school every term during moderation challenge meetings.

Love for reading...

All pupils 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.

We firmly believe 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. We celebrate children's reading journeys through rewards such as book prizes and visits to Waterstones.

Therefore we believe it is essential that, by the end of their primary education at Ward Green, all pupils are able to read fluently, and with confidence, in any subject in their forthcoming secondary education.