Reading at St. Luke's

Reading at St Luke's is an integral part of our learning.

Starting with Phonics in Reception, children are taught in a practical way, to sound out, write and blend. (There is a break down of the teaching of Phonics on the website; please see for further details.) This is applied though speaking activities, matching games and from Year 1 onwards in the form of daily Guided Reading sessions. In Reception our children read with an adult twice a week to build on these Phonics skills and begin to develop an understanding of the texts by questions character's motives, feelings and predicting parts of the story. 

We place a huge importance on children having the opportunity to read with an adult on a regular basic. In our Guided Reading sessions, the children are split into small groups of around 5 or 6. These sessions last for around 25 minutes but can extend to 35 in Upper KS2. The children will read with an adult two out of five of the sessions in the week and the remaining sessions will have activities differentiated according to the abilities of the children. These activities could involve Phonics, reading for enjoyment, using a dictionary, comprehension questions and many more exciting activities. During the adult led sessions, children will develop both their fluency and inference skills by reading and answering questions related to the text. This could be in the form of verbal questioning or written.

In order to build on these inference skills (and apply them to comprehension based activities), from Year 1 onwards the children have a weekly reading lesson. This allows the children to become familiar with the formal assessment method for reading, which they will sit in Year 2 and Year 6 SATs as well as interim assessments.

In addition to Guided Reading and comprehension sessions, reading is interwoven into our creative curriculum through all of our subjects. We believe this approach broadens children's understanding of the English language and widens their vocabulary. We have a rich library, exciting books corners and an excellent provision of books for children to take home. In Reception - Yr 4 all children’s books are changed twice a week and in Yr 5/6 the children take on this responsibility themselves, where appropriate.

Holiday and term time reading and writing challenges and competitions, are regularly sent home for the children to enter and we have had a number of successful competition winners over the last few years. We are lucky to have great links with ABC Reader and local schools within the community. We have a number of volunteers and pupils visiting the school on a weekly basis to read with individual children 1:1. 

In addition, Sessions are planned to support pupil engagement (revisit, teach, apply, review) all sessions are taught in a very practical way that is accessible to all; taking the children through a sequence of phases of phonic development.

The reading process begins when the children can use their phonetic knowledge to break down words (segment) in to the individual sounds and then blend (blending)them back together to read the whole word. They regularly review words that can not be sounded out (tricky words) so that they can identify them in a text and read them aloud. Through discussion children can then comment on the story, retell it in their own words and give their opinion.

All pupils’ reading is resourced appropriately including visual aids and ICT. Boxes of banded reading resources are available to every class and children are encouraged to read books at their appropriate level. These can include phonetically de-codable books. We also use materials to support children with learning 'tricky' words and the segmenting and blending of new words and sounds. In KS2 we have a selection of Project X books which are a range of stories aimed at boys. They not only increase the enjoyment of reading but are designed to develop comprehension skills as they read through the text.

The children regularly self-assess their ability and understanding, ways in which they read and also how they develop their skills as 'self correctors.' Teachers also monitor children’s progress and attainment through daily assessment and regular bench marking.  Support for parents is available through workshops and hand-outs.

Each term every phase has a focus author, this enables the children to link their reading learning to their writing and also explore a range of work by one author. This gives the children the opportunity to look at authors who are significant in our history or to the current topic.


Please do not hesitate to speak to your class teacher if you have any questions about reading at St Luke's and/or how you can help your child at home.