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At Abel Smith we inspire children to develop a love of reading for pleasure and teach them the necessary skills to read and share books which ignite their imagination and widen their knowledge of the world. We give them the opportunity to read books from our rich and varied literary heritage and we establish the habit of reading widely and often. We believe that children need to develop secure Literacy skills to enable them to become lifelong learners and to be able to communicate effectively in society. There is a clear pathway of progression of skills as the children move through the school.  



These aims are embedded across our English lessons and the wider curriculum. We have a well organised English curriculum that provides many purposeful opportunities for reading and discussion. Year 2 and KS2 Teachers use the Question stem progression document to plan age-appropriate reading comprehension sessions that fit in line with the reading domains as well as promoting a love of reading as guided by the DfE’s Reading Framework. While in EYFS reading is embedded through both Learning through Play and Adult led opportunities. Teachers also ensure that cross curricular links are embedded in planning for discussion and reading activities.  



National Curriculum Aims (2014) 

The national curriculum for English aims to ensure that all pupils:   ● read easily, fluently and with good understanding   ● develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information   ● acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading.  

● appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage   ● use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas  

Word Reading Aims 

Skilled word reading involves:  

  • the speedy working out of the pronunciation of unfamiliar printed words (decoding and blending)  

  • the speedy recognition of familiar printed words. (sight reading) 

Comprehension Aim 

Good comprehension draws from linguistic knowledge (in particular of vocabulary and grammar) and on knowledge of the world.  

Comprehension skills develop through: 

  • pupils’ experience of high-quality discussion with the teacher, as well as from reading and discussing a range of stories, poems, and non-fiction.  

  • reading widely across both fiction and non-fiction to develop their knowledge of themselves and the world in which they live, to establish an appreciation and love of reading, and to gain knowledge across the curriculum.  

  • Reading widely and often to increase pupils’ vocabulary because they encounter words they would rarely hear or use in everyday speech.  

  • Reading to feed their imagination and opens up a treasure-house of wonder and joy for curious young minds. 


At Abel Smith we teach:  

  • Daily phonic lessons using Little Wandle in EY and KS1   

  • Daily whole class READING sessions to develop reading skills in Years 1-6  

  • Individual readers with those children who require extra support after Pupil Progress discussions.  


In addition to daily English lessons, from EY through to Year 6, our children use our reading scheme to develop a range of reading skills, as well as a love of reading. Interventions are in place, using schemes such as Rapid Readers, to provide high interest, accessible texts for children needing support.    

  We use a wide variety of quality texts and resources in our teaching, to motivate and inspire our children. We also provide a wealth of enrichment opportunities, from World Book Day Celebrations each year, to running a poetry day, welcoming authors in school, drama workshops which bring books to life, visits to the theatre and local library and book clubs. This ensures that children are immersed in creative literature and experience positive role models from the local and wider locality.  



As a result our children share a love of reading - they are enthusiastic readers who enjoy showcasing their developing literacy knowledge and skills through displays around the school and performing to a wider audience in assemblies. They are confident to take risks in their reading, and love to discuss and share their ideas. Our attainment at the end of EYFS, KS1 and KS2 is above the national average and most children leave Abel Smith with secure Literacy skills to enable them to continue their learning and to be able to communicate effectively as they move on to Secondary school.

Progression of Reading Skills

Phonics Progression