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Willowcroft Community School

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Opportunities for Reading at Willowcroft

At Willowcroft, we strive to stimulate a life-long love and enjoyment of reading in every child because we know that reading is an essential life skill. Each staff member is determined to help every child to learn to read, develop their fluency and their comprehension skills, including vocabulary knowledge.  


Early Years and Key Stage 1

In Early Years and Key Stage 1 our children learn to read using Read Write Inc (RWI) Phonics. Our children are assessed regularly and grouped based on their assessment. This allows complete participation in lessons. In each session, children learn and practise their Phonics sounds and read green words with the sounds they know in. Children also read a decodable book.

Children take home a RWI 'bookbag book' that matches the progression they are making with their Phonics journey. This book to them is fully decodable, meaning that they are able to read it based on the sounds and words they are already able to read.

Children who are lucky enough to attend our Nursery begin their RWI journey in the summer term. 

More information on the RWI Phonics scheme is available for parents on the Ruth Miskin training website below: 


Years 2 - 6

Pupils in Year 2 - 6 have a whole class Guided Reading session in their class 4 times a week. Guided Reading books/texts are chosen either to complement the topic children are learning that term or that are appropriate but challenging for the age group in order to cover a range of genres.

There is more information on our Guided Reading Provision for KS2 on the document linked below.

Children who need it will continue to follow the RWI Phonics scheme until they are ready to move on.


Reading in Class

Our curriculum has reading at its heart. In EYFS and KS1, teachers select high quality books to read aloud to their children daily. In KS2, each year group has a termly class reader book that is read aloud daily. Some class readers are based on the topic the children are studying for that term in order to deepen their knowledge and immerse them in their topic further. Others are high quality books appropriate for the age group.


Reading Ambassadors

As part of our children's leadership programme, Year 5 and 6 children have the opportunity to apply and be Reading Ambassadors for the school. These children work with our Reading Leader. They help children with their book choices and listen to younger children read.


A school-wide enjoyment of reading

As well as the reading that happens every day in class, at home and in the library, we ensure that reading is celebrated as a school. We have a school-wide celebration for World Book Day. We have '30 Top Reads' for each year group and these are displayed in the corridors for the children to use and enjoy. We open a book fayre for our children 2-3 times a year, where teachers spend quality time browsing books with their classes. We also have a termly reading assembly that is often led by our Reading Ambassadors.


Phonics Screening Check

What is the Year 1 Phonics Screening Check?

The Year 1 phonics screening check is a short assessment to confirm whether individual pupils have learnt phonic decoding to an appropriate standard. It will identify the children who need extra help so they are given support by their school to improve their reading skills. They will then be able to retake the check so that schools can track pupils until they are able to decode.


What our children say about reading:

Our children are the best advocates for an enjoyment in reading. Here is what they have to say about it:


I think reading is really fun because it can transport me to different worlds. I like getting books from the book store down town and I like the ones we can get from anywhere in school, they give me lots of new experiences. - Florence, Year 5


I love reading because when I read, I feel like I get sucked into a story and see what's going on. I picture the story like it's right in front of me. If it's left on a cliff hanger, I get really disappointed because I want to know what happens next. - Jade, Year 6


I enjoy reading because there's loads of different books to choose from so there is always something that everyone likes. - Ben, Year 6


I like it when my teacher reads to the whole class. She uses different accents for different characters and it brings the story to life. - Emily, Year 6


Sometimes, I find reading really tricky but I have liked reading the special Barrington Stoke Books that are in our shared area. I have read 4 this week! - Becca, Year 6

How can I support my child with reading at home?

Below are some top tips from the Education Endowment Foundation about how to support your child with reading.