Learning to read is one of the most important things your child will learn at our school. At Bedlinog Community Primary School we recognise the importance of ensuring our pupils are provided with the necessary skills that will allow them to access the world they live in, as well as promoting a true love for reading!
We recognise that reading is a complex skill made up of many parts, and it is therefore important that, whilst at school, your child is provided with an opportunity to develop as a confident and competent reader.
How will my child be taught to read?
Reading is taught regularly, right through the school. It starts right at the start of school in our Nursery class and is promoted throughout your child's education with us.
Initially, we teach reading skills in Nursery through E.R.I.C time (Everyone Reads In Class). This is a time where pupils are given an opportunity to familiarise themselves with books. Pupils learn how to hold a book the right way, how to turn pages, how to explore pictures, and are exposed to hearing stories - all vitally important skills to begin the reading journey.
Following this, pupils move on to the highly successful 'Read Write Inc' program. Children learn how to 'read' the sounds (phonics) in words and how those sounds can be written down. This is essential for reading, but also helps children learn to spell well.
Once children grasp these sounds and can blend them together to form words, they practise reading books that match the phonics and words they know. They start to believe they can read and this does wonders for their confidence.
Teachers regularly read to the children too, to the children get to know and love all sorts of stories, poetry and information books. This helps to extend children's vocabulary and comprehension, as well as support their writing.
Up until the end of Year 2, your child will work in groups, with children who are at the same reading level as them. This is so that the teaching can be focused on their individual needs. Some older children will continue to access 'Read, Write, Inc.' if they need further consolidation and development of their reading skills. We check children's reading skills regularly so that we can place them in the correct groups. Children will move to a different group if they are making faster progress, or may have one-to-one support if we think they need some extra help.
In Key Stage 2, the children undertake daily reading activities as part of a 'Reading Carousel', including regular guided reading sessions with staff, within their classes. All pupils have access to a wide selection of reading materials to choose from and take part in regular activities within their literacy sessions, promoting good reading behaviours, skills which are vital to be a competent reader.
How long will it take my child to learn to read well?
All of us continue to learn to read - It is a process that never stops! In the summer term of Year 1, we carry out a reading assessment on your child. This allows us to gain a 'Reading Age'. From this information we can work out where your child's development is currently, and what needs to be done to move them forward.
At the end of Year 2, and each consequent year, your child will then take part in National Tests which are designed to assess your child's progress in reading. This will allow both you and the school to know exactly how well your child is reading, and identify what needs to be done to secure their on going progress.
Every child is different and children will learn to read at different speeds. By the end of Year 2, most children will be able to read aloud books that are at the right level for his or her age. In Year 3 and beyond, we concentrate more on helping children to understand what they are reading, although this work begins very early on.
What does the school offer to give my child reading incentives?
At Bedlinog Community Primary School, we have made significant investment in a variety of reading schemes to encourage your child to access a range of texts suited to their own personal interests, whilst also extending their reading ability and confidence.
Pupils also have access to a significant 'library' collection of books which provide a whole range of different texts for children to enjoy.
What can parents/carers do to help?
As your child starts school in our Foundation Phase, you will be invited to a 'Meet the Teacher' event which will allow your child's teacher to explain how he/she will be teaching reading, and the strategies that you can use at home to help support this. Lots of ideas are shared in this meeting and your support really does get your child off to a flying start and encourages them to make great progress. Regularly listening to your child read has a massive impact on their reading!
You can help your child to sound out the letters in words and then to 'blend' the sounds together to make a whole word. Try not to refer to the letters by their names. Help your child to focus on the sounds. You can see how to pronounce the sounds properly in the video below.
Sometimes your child might bring home a book they already know. Please don't say 'This is too easy', as they may have chosen that because they enjoy it. Instead, encourage your child to tell you the story out loud; ask them questions about things that happen or what they think about some of the characters in the story.
Make reading fun! Remember to keep reading to your child, as well as listening to them. They will come across far more adventurous words than they will in their early reading books and you will be helping them to grow a vast vocabulary and develop a deeper understanding of different stories. It will also encourage them to love books and want to read more!
For more ideas and information, please see the links at the bottom of this page.
Does it matter if my child misses a lesson or two?
It matters a lot if your child misses school.The way we teach children to read is very well organised, so even one missed lesson means that your child may not learn something that they need to know to be a good reader.
What if my child finds it difficult to read?
We want every child to learn to read, however long it takes us to teach them! We will find out very quickly if your child is finding reading difficult. Firstly we move children to a different group, so that we can make sure that they have learnt what they need to know. If they still struggle, we may give them extra support.
If we have any concerns about your child's reading, we will talk to you about this.
Remember, all children are individual so some children take a little longer to put sounds together to read a word. At our regular parent meetings, we will explain how you can help your child do this.
If you have any further queries about how we teach reading, then please don't hesitate to get in touch.