Reading

What does Reading look like at Wellfield Middle School?

“Today a reader – tomorrow a leader” – Margaret Fuller

 

At Wellfield we understand the importance of fostering a lifelong love of reading and the range of academic and mental health benefits this can provide.

At Wellfield children:

  • will be exposed to a range of different authors and genres (including fiction, non-fiction, poetry, plays and media texts) across the curriculum
  • are exposed to regular and embedded opportunities to read for pleasure and discuss books for enjoyment
  • will learn in a ‘book rich’ environment with all teachers seen as readers
  • will be involved in shared and modelled reading right across the curriculum

Reading across the curriculum

We understand as a school that there are different strands of reading and all teachers are familiar with these to ensure they are incorporated into all subjects and year groups. At Wellfield, children will have opportunities to develop their reading for pleasure habits, learn how to read for learning and knowledge as well improve their fluency. All teachers at Wellfield are teachers of reading and there are regular opportunities throughout the curriculum for children to study, access and enjoy age-appropriate texts.

Transition

Before the children come to use at the beginning of year 5, the teachers have already had lots of conversations with our feeder schools to find out about what the children have already read, reading habits and individual gaps so that the transition to Y5 is as seamless as possible in terms of teaching of reading skills as well as any interventions that may be necessary. We collect the children’s reading age on leaving Y4 and use informal assessments on entry to Y5 to assess their comprehension skills (e.g. Rising Stars)

Reading in Key Stage 2

Reading for Learning

Children have access to a wide range of non-fiction and digital texts throughout the year and are taught how to use these specifically to find information they may need. Whether it be using a contents and index to look for something specific or the skills to precis what they have read for the key details; children are encouraged to be independent in their learning.

They will begin to understand that ‘reading as a historian’ may be different to reading a text for information’ as a scientist’ and this will form the basis of skills which will be build upon in KS3.

Reading for understanding, meaning & fluency

We are using the online program Reading + to develop a range of reading skills including comprehension and reading stamina. This program is individually tailored to a child’s needs and ability and allows them to work on skills that are relevant to them.

They will sit a short placement test each half term which ensures they are progressing and accessing texts at the right level. This also helps to identify gaps which the teacher can then work on in lessons.

We use Reading + for at least x3 15 minute slots in school throughout the week as well as encouraging children to access this at home.

We develop fluency through regularly reading aloud to the children from a range of texts to model good use of intonation and expression and prosody. The children are also given opportunities to read aloud in class and as part of recording activities.

Reading for Pleasure

Building positive reading habits is what drives any reading at Wellfield and we strive to help all students develop a love of reading. During the year, many different types and styles of books are shared with the children to help them find the ‘right’ book or author for them. They can choose books from our extensive (and growing) library collection and we encourage regular reading of these in school and at home in order to help build positive reading habits.

Whatever a child is reading they are expected to log their reading on their digital record on their iPad’s at least 4 times per week; this is monitored and supported by their  class teachers and we encourage a mix of independent and family reading.

Reading recommendations regularly happen in classrooms as well as in school assemblies to encourage ‘book talk’ as part of school life.

Teaching of Reading

In KS2, reading is taught through all subjects as well as within specific reading sessions throughout the week. Children are taught and encouraged to look for background knowledge they can bring to a text to help establish context and make links with what they have read before; this can help them support predictions about what may happen in the plot or how characters might behave. They are taught how to unpick the language in a text for meaning and to infer what a writer is trying to convey y the words used as well as being taught strategies to summarise what they have read and what to do when they encounter new and unfamiliar words.

In English, the children will study a story or novel in each term that supports these skills as well as linking to their current topic.

Reading in Key Stage 3

Reading for Pleasure

Building positive reading habits continues to drive any reading at Wellfield into KS3 and we strive to help all students continue and develop their love of reading more independently.

In English, the children are exposed to a wide range of different genres and authors to allow them to widen their literary range.

In form time and across the school, reading recommendations are shared from children and staff and children are encouraged to widen their reading around the themes they enjoy; this is supported by conversations with form tutors and staff in the library.

Whatever a child is reading they are expected to log their reading on their digital record on their iPad’s at least 4 times per week; this is monitored and supported by their class teachers and we encourage a mix of independent and family reading.

Reading recommendations regularly happen in classrooms as well as in school assemblies to encourage ‘book talk’ as part of school life.

Teaching of Reading

In KS2, reading is taught through all subjects as well as within specific reading sessions throughout the week. Children are taught and encouraged to look for background knowledge they can bring to a text to help establish context and make links with what they have read before; this can help them support predictions about what may happen in the plot or how characters might behave. They are taught how to unpick the language in a text for meaning and to infer what a writer is trying to convey y the words used as well as being taught strategies to summarise what they have read and what to do when they encounter new and unfamiliar words.

In English, the children will study a story or novel in each term that supports these skills as well as linking to their current topic.

Reading for learning and knowledge

As children access more specialist subject teaching, they will be taught to develop their reading skills specific to each subject as they study a wider and more challenging range of texts. They will begin to identify how reading for knowledge in each subject will require a slightly different focus whilst still practicing the basic skills of retrieval, inference, summary and prediction

Transition

To aid the transition to Y9 in High School, teachers will have conversations about what the children have covered, read and any gaps or interventions that are currently underway for this to be continued and build upon. Through collaboration meetings, the high school know what is taught and what texts are used in Y7 and Y8 to avoid repetition and build links in learning. The children complete reading transition activities sent from each high school in the summer term and we also share assessment data and information.

How do we track progress in reading?

Y4 – Y5 Reading ages are gathered from our feeder first schools as well as any tracking or intervention information to allow us to get a picture of the cohort before entry and plan appropriately.

KS2 Progress of children’s reading is tracked in two ways: progress in comprehension and fluency is tracked using the Reading + online assessment whilst progression of curriculum skills and knowledge through the school assessment system OTRACK working towards end of KS2 objectives.

KS3 Progress against curriculum skills and knowledge is continued consistently through OTRACK whilst reading ability is monitored from the beginning of Y7 using the NFER reading age scores. This allows us to track and monitor reading progress which can then be continued into high school (which use the same reading age system.

What happens is children are falling behind? If a child, or group of children, are found to be below ARE or experiencing slow progress then they names are shared with the whole staff in Tracking Review meetings (to share personalised strategies to support reading skills in lessons) and if appropriate, reading intervention will be put in place. We also regularly contact parents to discuss progress and strategies that can help from home.

Reading Intervention

If a child is identified as needing support in an aspect of reading they will have access to a range of reading intervention which include:

Reciprocal Reading (KS2 & KS3) – a small group intervention which uses a mixture of explanation, instruction, modelling and guided practice to strengthen reading skills.

Catapult Literacy Intervention (KS3) – which supports struggling readers and helps to build their confidence and comprehensions skills

Reading Inference (KS2 & KS3) – small group intervention which supports and strengthens children’s inferences with a range of texts

Reading for Pleasure (KS2 & KS3) – nurtures a love of reading through exploring books together purely for their enjoyment

School Library

Our school library is at the heart of our school; we have a purpose-build, colourful and enticing library which has a wide variety of books to choose from (and is regularly refreshed with new titles!)

Children have access to the library every lunchtime and can check out and take books home. They are offered support with book choices and encouraged to expand their range with book recommendations.

Book recommendations and ‘book talk’ can be seen around school with both staff and children regularly recommending books as well as discussing books in tutor times.