St Michael's Primary School

Together we achieve


St Michael's Reading Curriculum


Statement of Intent

It is our intent that reading inspires, engages and challenges pupils and we aim to develop key skills to enable all children to become fluent and confident readers. We will support and encourage all children to decode, comprehend and enjoy reading regardless of starting points and strive to enable good progress through high quality teaching and learning. Reading is an essential life skill and at St Michael’s Primary School we want our children to leave with a passion for reading. We aim to promote a love of reading across all ages by allowing children to access high quality texts across the curriculum, encounter rich & varied vocabulary and develop their comprehension skills. We want reading to develop as a transferrable skill which will enable pupils to become inquisitive, improve their spoken and written literacy skills and become lifelong learners.



Reading in the Early Years:

We begin the teaching of systematic phonics as soon as the children begin school in EYFS. At St Michael’s we use Read Write Inc. as the single approach to teaching phonics. Children’s phonics knowledge is assessed every 8 weeks and children are then put into smaller, bespoke groups to enable them to progress at the correct level. We have a keep up, don’t catch up approach to reading and any child who struggles to make progress will be given 1:1 phonics to help them to overcome their issues and make accelerated progress. This provision continues throughout Key Stage 1, ensuring every child can learn to read. Learning to decode fluently and accurately allows children to become confident readers and enables learners to access all the enjoyment and excitement books can bring. In addition to the direct and systematic teaching of word-reading knowledge and skills, children listen to books and stories designed to develop their comprehension skills, make links between books and develop their knowledge and understanding of the world around them. 


Reading at Key Stage One:

In Year One and Two, the teaching of Read Write Inc. continues daily and is regularly monitored to ensure that each child’s ability is matched to their provision. At this stage, the children progress with their word-reading skills – both phonic decoding skills and the quick recognition of ‘common exception words’ (red words) to enhance levels of fluency, expression and reading stamina. In Year 2, learners are supported to develop key comprehension skills which include predicting, understanding vocabulary choices, retrieving information, summarising, making inferences and using evidence from the text to justify their responses. We use V.I.P.E.R.S Vocabulary, Inference, Predict, Explain, Retrieve and Summarise/Sequence) as our method to explicitly teach each skill. Here the children read age related texts and answer a range of formal comprehension questions to improve their confidence and develop a love of reading.


RWI Expectation


Book Order

Year Group

Ditty Sheets


Red Ditties


Green Books


Purple Books


Pink Books

Reception/Year 1

Orange Books

Year 1

Yellow Books

Year 1

Blue Books

Year 1

Grey Books

Year 1/Year 2



Reading at Key Stage Two:

Reading in Key Stage Two continues to develop decoding, fluency and comprehension skills. The Simple View of Reading, highlighted in the Rose Review, forms the foundations of provision for reading in Key Stage Two. Developing key reading skills through high-quality teaching is the priority for our children. In addition, studying whole texts in lessons – Novel Study - develops children’s love of reading by giving them the opportunity to read and listen to texts and authors they might not have chosen to read for themselves, also providing opportunities to encounter a wide variety of genres. We have daily guided reading comprehension sessions to ensure that children read age-related texts and answer V.I.P.E.R.S (Vocabulary, Inference, Predict, Explain, Retrieve and Summarise / Sequence) as our method to explicitly teach each skill. These whole class or group reading comprehension sessions are used as a powerful tool to allow all children to make progress in reading and provide regular and supportive opportunities for children to encounter engaging texts that will resonate with their interests and capture their imagination. Carefully graded questions allow for children to develop their comprehension skills at an appropriate level.


Education Endowment Fund research indicates that reading comprehension approaches deliver an additional six months’ progress. Successful reading comprehension approaches allow activities to be carefully tailored to pupils’ reading capabilities and involve activities and texts that provide an effective, but not overwhelming, challenge. Texts are chosen to embed core teaching in English or other subject areas and also by their ATOS level.


Individual Reading

As children enter school, we assign them to a specific level of book based on their word reading skills and their ability to understand and explain what they are reading. Earlier book levels, up to ATOS level 3.5, are linked to their phonics phases.


Once the children are on Red Ditty books, they will bring three books home weekly. One will be the RWI book they have read in school. They should read this with expression and fluency. A second book will be a RWI bookbag book. This book will have a similar theme and reading level as they one studied in class and will allow the children to practise their decoding skills. Both these books should be read at least three times at home. A further book will be a book of their choice for parents to read with them and discuss. These books will be changed on a weekly basis.


When the children complete the RWI programme, they will move onto the Accelerated Reader programme. At this point, usually in Year 2, they will be assessed using the Star Reading assessment from Accelerated Reader to identify their reading age and ATOS level. Accelerated Reader is a computer program that helps teachers manage and monitor children’s independent reading practice. Children pick a book at their own level, monitored through the Star Reading assessments and Accelerated Reader program, and read it at their own pace. When finished, children take a short quiz on the computer - passing the quiz is an indication that they have understood what has been read. Accelerated Reader gives both children and teachers feedback based on the quiz results, which the teacher then uses to help the child set targets for their reading, build a picture of their progress and support children with their book choices.


Story Time

At St Michael’s, we recognise that story time is an integral part of our day. Story time broadens horizons and also vocabulary and allows children to share their experiences. It allows for further embedding of the curriculum area for the term by giving an alternative viewpoint or comparison.


Buddy Reading

Across the whole school from EYFS to Year 6, a KS2 class is paired with a class from either KS1 or EYFS. The two classes will meet once a week and each child will work with a carefully selected partner from the opposite class. In their pair, the older child will listen to the younger child read their reading book and they will share at least one other book that is jointly chosen, the older child taking the lead in reading it and having a joint dialogue about the content and their opinions of the book. This process helps to further develop children’s reading skills and promote a love of reading.



In KS1, children have additional phonics, either 1:1 or as a group to help them to make the correct amount of progress in their phonics and reading. This continues into Year 3 should a child not pass their phonics screening check by the end of Year 2. In years 4, 5 and 6, any child whose reading is below standard has additional 1:1 or group phonics sessions through Fresh Start, which is a RWI catch up programme.




The impact of how we teach our children to become readers is demonstrated through teacher assessment, termly standardised tests and phonics assessments in addition to national testing.


  • EYFS Reading %
  • Year 1 Phonics Screening Results
  • KS1 Reading Attainment - Teacher Assessment
  • KS2 Reading Attainment - SATs



Children will have a love of Reading and make at least good progress in Reading from their last point of statutory assessment or from their starting point in EYFS.


Children will use their Reading skills as a key tool in helping them to learn, and as a result, know more, remember more and understand more.


Children will make at least good progress in Reading, Writing and Speaking and Listening from their last point of statutory assessment or from their starting point in EYFS.


Children will use their English knowledge and skills, in all curriculum areas, to enable them to know more, remember more and understand more.