The teaching of reading at Holland House
At Holland House, we follow the daily Read Write Inc phonics programme which focuses on giving children the skills needed to break up words into individual sounds and blend sounds together to make words. The children are grouped across the two Key Stages to enable them to be taught at a level that accurately matches their current understanding and level of progress. Every child is assessed on a 1:1 basis by our Reading Manager in school who then regroups the children according to their ability to ensure rapid progress for all children. We also have daily 'Phonics Booster' sessions for any child making less than expected progress in order to achieve our aim of every child leaving Holland House with the skills and motivation to be a lifelong reader.
In addition to Read Write Inc, we feel it is necessary that our learners develop the comprehension skills and a love of reading necessary for lifelong success. Starting in EYFS, we have daily timetabled Guided Reading session where the children work in small groups to predict, read, discuss and evaluate a text that is appropriate for their reading level. During this time, they are also able to visit the library to borrow a book and listen to a story, use the iPads to access our online ‘Bug Club’ programme and complete follow up activities based on the book they are reading.
Developing a love of reading.
We are passionate about giving all of our children a love of reading to last a lifetime and have recently invested heavily in developing our library area and book corners to make them stimulating and geared towards the children’s current reading interests.
Starting from Nursery, every child makes regular timetabled visits to the library where they are supported in choosing a book to take home to read for pleasure. All of our children spend time researching different authors and illustrators and comparing and sharing their books
We also work hard to develop links with Sutton Coldfield Library, local theatrical groups and bookshops to enhance our curriculum provision for all children. On our annual 'bedtime story' event, children are invited into school in their pajamas for a bed time story and a hot chocolate and this proves to be very popular with all pupils!
The teaching of writing.
At Holland House we believe that high quality, carefully planned learning opportunities are the only way to ensure both progression and enthusiasm in learning to write. Our carefully planned topics are personalised towards the children’s interests and our learning in literacy is closely linked to this.
Presentation and handwriting is also a huge part of our curriculum. We have regular taught handwriting sessions, whereby we teach child to join their letters using a cursive style.
In every lesson, children are awarded a grade for all written pieces. These are as follows;
P* - Presentation and handwriting is of a high standard.
P Presentation and handwriting is of an acceptable standard but needs further improvement.
P Triangle - Presentation and handwriting is of an acceptable standard and needs to be improved.
All children in school have a 'Writer-raptor' reward card and they collect stickers for every P* they achieve. When a child has achieved 10 P* awards they visit Miss Turley as English leader to celebrate their achievement and receive a prize.
Children who accurately adopt this method will be rewarded with a ‘Pen License’ and will have the opportunity to use a handwriting pen in all of their work across the curriculum.
Read Write Inc
At Holland House Infant School and Nursery we use the Read Write Inc (RWI) programme to get children off to a flying start with their literacy. RWI is a method of learning centred around letter sounds and phonics, and we use it to aid children in their reading and writing.
Reading opens the door to learning. A child who reads a lot will become a good reader. A good reader will be able to read more challenging material. A child who reads challenging material is a child who will learn. The more a child learns, the more he or she will want to find out.
Using RWI, the children learn to read effortlessly so that they can put all their energy into comprehending what they read. It also allows them to spell effortlessly so that they can put all their energy into composing what they write.
When using RWI to read the children will:
- learn 44 sounds and the corresponding letter/letter groups using simple picture prompts
- learn to read words using Fred Talk
- read lively stories featuring words they have learned to sound out
- show that they comprehend the stories by answering questions.
When using RWI to write the children will:
- learn to write the letters/letter groups which represent 44 sounds.
- learn to write words by saying the sounds in Fred Talk
- write simple sentences
Parent Tutorial: Understanding Read Write Inc. Phonics
The first of our parent tutorials explains:
- Letter and sound correspondence
- Why learning to read and spell in English is more difficult than in other languages
- What the National Curriculum says about learning to read
- Why children love learning to read, write and spell using Read Write Inc. Phonics.