At St Mary’s we use the Read Write Inc (RWI) programme to get children off to a flying start with their literacy. RWI is a method of learning centred round letter sounds and phonics, and we use it to aid children in their reading and writing.
Reading opens the door to learning. A child who reads a lot will become a good reader. A good reader will be able to read more challenging material. A child who reads challenging material is a child who will learn. The more a child learns, the more he or she will want to find out.
Using RWI, the children learn to read effortlessly so that they can put all their energy into comprehending what they read. It also allows them to spell effortlessly so that they can put all their energy into composing what they write.
When using RWI to read the children will:
When using RWI to write the children will:
Each week children accessing the RWInc scheme in school will recieve a home reader specifically designed for the set of sounds they are learning at the time. The books are designed to build confidence and fluency, so developing young readers skills and knowledge. In addition like all other children they will recieve a mediated home reader from the Oxford Tree Scheme, this again will contain the some of the sounds they are learning, but will also have other sounds. The mediated book is designed to read with the support of an adult, thereby allowing the child to see the value of reading and enjoy the learning experience with family.
Please click on the link below to view a parent introduction to phonics:
Please click on the link below to view a video explaining how we use Read Write Inc to teach phonics:
Please click on the link below to view a video showing the correct pronunciations of Set 1, 2 and 3 sounds:
St Mary’s uses the Oxford Reading Tree reading scheme. Children are regularly assessed, to ensure that they are reading the correct stage book. This enables staff to ensure that the pace of reading is correct and that there is sufficient challenge to help progress pupil’s reading fluency. Children in Key Stage One are given a reading book to take home regularly and have a reading diary which is a home /school link to allow parents to support their child at home. As children progress later in the school and their reading ability develops, they ay are able to access a range of texts within the school library to continue their reading development.
Oxford Reading Tree is a Character led sequence of books which follow the lives and adventures of the central characters Biff, Chip, Kipper and Floppy. The initial levels are phonetically structured. The controlled vocabulary increasingly introduces more complex vocabulary as the scheme progresses. The adventures and predicaments that the central characters find themselves in allow the reader to think about and engage with the characters and ask questions about the stories.
If you require any further information about Phonics or Oxford Reading Tree please contact your class teacher.
At St Mary’s we regularly hold reading events for all children to enjoy. We are active members of the Berwick Literacy Festival, with our children participating in workshops, public events and themed visits from authors and illustrators.
We also have a range of activities organised each year for World Book Day. Children love to dress up as their favourite book character and take part in a range reading activities to encourage participation.
The school runs termly reading competitions for home reading both in Early Years and Key Stage 1 & 2. with prizes of days out and creative art days, participation is high and increasing. Every year the school arranges a variety of events to support parent involvement in their child’s reading development.
As well as one off events, the school has a range of initiatives to develop a love of reading including:
We have a passion for storytelling at St Mary’s, with the children getting daily sessions from staff reading everything from nursery ryhmes to an encyclopedia describing climate change! We read books chosen both by the children and the staff, so there is always something exciting to listen too.
We have a special storytelling corner in school where we keep a selection of our favourite books, as well as some new ones we may learn to love in the future. We also have an interactive TV area, where we listen to famous people read their favourite childhood stories from all over the world.
As a school we have a set of books that all the children will read during their time with us. The collection of books is called our Reading Spine, and it is made up of an agreed set of books for each year group. Our Reading Spine is the Pie Corbett Reading Spine.
Pie Corbett’s Reading Spine is a core of books that create a living library inside a child’s mind. It is a store of classics and essential reads that help children engage at a deeper level and enter the world of the story.
Imagine a primary school where, over seven or eight years, children are read to, enjoy, discuss and work with a core of around 80 books. These ‘essential reads’ would be a store of classics, creating a living library inside a child’s mind. This is the ‘reading spine’. Schools that have a reading spine build a common bank of stories that bind the community together.”
Pie Corbett, Literacy expert
At St Mary’s we have worked with the children to create a library that reflects the children’s interests and passions. Each calss has an author of the term to follow and enjoy, from Rohld Dahyl to Stuart Reid, the sets of books are designed to encourage reading beyond what is being taught in the class room.
From January 2020 we have also launched our 100 books to enjoy before you leave St Mary’s. The children chose the Scholastic top 100 books for children, as it was voted for by 1000 book-loving teachers across the UK and Ireland as their favourite books to share in class, in which you find an inspiring mix of new and old classics – perfect for instilling a love of reading in every child.
We have the 100 books in our stroytelling area in school for he children enjoy both independently and with their friends in class.
If you would like to find out what is in the top 100, simply click this link.
Please watch the video below to learn how to pronounce the sounds correctly, they need a little practice but the effort is worth it!
Saying sounds correctly
Linking sounds to letters
Sounds represented by more than one letter
Practise, practise, practise
Putting sounds together to read simple words
Common sense … Lots and lots of books!
Praise and hugs!
If you would like to download our presentation for parents in how to support reading at home please click on the link below:
Why not download our parent leaflet to help you use Read Write Inc at home:
Advice from The BookTrust, demonstrates reading books with children is a great way to spend family time. Research shows that exploring books can have lots of benefits for kids, and it’s also just fantastic family fun.
But we know that not everyone feels comfortable about reading aloud or sharing stories, which is why The BookTrust have put together some helpful hints for parents and carers.
Here you’ll find advice about reading as a family, including video examples of enjoying books with children and a guide to what makes a good storyteller. You can also find top tips for engaging reluctant readers and encouraging older children to read.