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How we teach reading at St Lawrence

Huge importance is placed on the teaching of reading at St Lawrence School. The children are taught in a variety of ways the skills and strategies needed to read with understanding for both enjoyment and information.
 
Our approach to teaching reading at St Lawrence is multi-faceted and includes the “phonic” and “look and say” methods.  With the phonic method, children are taught how to recognise the sounds that individual letters and combinations of letters make and then blend these sounds together from left to right to make a word. With the “look and say” method children are taught to recognise there are some words that do not sound phonetically (tricky words) and need to be recognised on sight.
 
Our reading scheme books are all colour coded in line with the coloured book bands.
 
Children’s decoding retelling and comprehension skills are assessed using the PM benchmark to determine their readiness to proceed to the next level. The school uses a variety of reading schemes including Oxford Reading Tree, Project X and Rigby. These enable children to access a wide variety of genres, subjects and vocabulary, which is essential for the development of comprehension skills.
 
Children read regularly both in guided groups and individually as appropriate to their age and stage.
Children are encouraged to take an appropriate reading book home. The focus of children’s reading sessions is shared with parents via the contact diary.
 
The school is assisted by The Reading Support Group, a group of volunteers who focus on individuals in years 1-6 for a term, whom teachers feel would benefit from sustained regular 1:1 reading focus. The school also runs paired reading between years 1 and 5 and DEAR (Drop Everything And Read) time, where parents and carers stay in school and help to hear children read.
 
Phonics is taught daily through the phases of Letters and Sounds. In the Early Years Foundation Stage (Reception class) children are introduced to the initial sounds and diagraphs using the multi faceted Jolly Phonics approach. Children then work through the Phases of Letters and Sounds as appropriate in Reception and Years 1 and 2.  All children in Year 1 take part in the Phonics Screening.
 
Children have access to the library, from which they can borrow books to take home on a regular basis.
 
Our wider curriculum is designed to be “language rich” in order to continually enhance the children’s literacy, and their love of literature.
 
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