At Meadowdale, we place the highest importance on providing all children with a structured approach to learning to read from their very first days with us. In EYFS and Year 1, we use a phonics programme called Sounds-Write. It is a highly regarded linguistics programme that begins with sounds in the language and moves from sounds to the written word. Children, in their daily phonics sessions, are taught conceptual knowledge and skills that enable them to say the sounds and read the words. The programme begins by teaching an ‘Initial Code’. During this phase, the children learn that:
- sounds can be represented by spellings with one letter
- that some spellings are written with a double consonant
- some spellings are written with two different letters
Once the children are confident with applying this understanding in their reading and spelling, they move onto the ‘Extended Code’ towards the end of EYFS. During this phase, the children learn:
- a spelling can represent more than one sound
- the most common sounds represented by the target spelling
- how to manipulate alternative sounds in and out of words
This phase lasts throughout Year 1 and the skills they learn will continue to be applied in their reading and spelling well beyond this time. Throughout the programme, close links are made between reading and spelling.
Read more information about Sounds-Write here http://www.sounds-write.co.uk/sites/soundswrite/uploads/files/47-sounds_write_leaflet_for_yr_parents.pdf
Reading at School
We pride ourselves on our strong reading culture at Meadowdale. Reading is at the very heart of our curriculum. Our English lessons are centred around a range of high quality children books. We very much link spoken language, reading and writing in order that children can become more confident in all areas of the curriculum.
We have a reading spine throughout the school whereby each year group has a core selection of books that are shared with the children in different ways during the year. Here is our reading spine for you to look at.
Children have daily opportunities to read. At times, they read individually, in pairs, in small groups or as a whole class. The reading curriculum focuses on word reading (decoding words) and understanding of texts (comprehension). We teach these skills alongside each other. Opportunities are planned into our lessons for children to discuss what they are reading, share opinions and explore different responses to texts.
We have a lovely, recently refurbished library. One children are independent readers, they can choose from a range of literature here. Each classroom also has a reading area and its own stock of books for children to read.
Reading at Home
Like anything in life, the more you do something the better you become. Research tells us that one of the best ways to become a good reader is to read more! With this in mind, we ask that children read regularly at home with an adult throughout their time with us. Daily reading is ideal although the minimum we expect is three times each week. Children who read for pleasure go on to do better in many areas of their academic career. It is one of the most significant indicators for success in life beyond school.