St Michael's CE Primary School

St Michaels CE Primary School

Inspired to Excel with the Freedom to Dream

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Reading and Writing



At St Michael’s School, we aim for every child to:

  • enjoy reading and writing and do so with confidence, fluency and understanding;

  • be able to orchestrate a range of independent strategies to self-monitor and correct;

  • have an interest in a wide range of texts both on paper and screen;

  • develop a growing vocabulary in which they are able to use in both spoken and written form;

  • understand a range of text types and genres – be able to write in a variety of styles and forms appropriate to the situation.

  • learn in an environment geared towards rich language development & where all language is recognised & celebrated;

  • be adventurous with their word choices and have the confidence to experiment with new language, developing the powers of imagination, inventiveness and critical awareness.



Approaches to reading:


  • Phonics

  • Shared reading

  • Reading Buddies

  • Destination Reader

  • Daily Supported Reading 

  • Independent reading


In Reception and Key Stage 1: 

Children are taught phonics daily using the letters and Sound Scheme in order to support their reading. These are structured daily phonics lessons building on the skills developed in their previous setting. Children also take books to read at home with their parents/carers. These books are organised to match the order of sounds that they have been taught in class so that it reinforces their learning.


In Year One daily phonics lessons continue and booster sessions are held for children who are at risk of not meeting nationally expected levels. In addition, a programme called Daily Supported Reading is followed five times each week. Through this programme all children in Year 1 and 2 are placed into small groups and read books at an appropriate level to an adult. Regular assessments ensure that there is fluid movement between the groups so that children are fully supported and stretched to achieve their full potential. In the summer term children in Year 1 undertake the National Phonics Screening Check. All children continue to take books to read at home from our structured reading scheme.


Any children who did not meet the expectations of the National Phonics Screening Check in Year 1 are given further help and are assessed again at the end of the year.


In Years 3 to 6 children take part in daily extended reading lessons, five times a week, based on a reading approach called Destination Reader. The main focus of the approach is teaching the key reading strategies which support comprehension and the learning behaviours which support dialogue, through shared quality texts. We also aim to foster a lifelong love of reading by encouraging our children to read as much and as often as possible.


Children continue to take books home to read in KS2 and are asked to complete a short writing task for homework based on the reading strategy studied that week. In Key Stage 2, some children are still progressing through the scheme books (and the reading record book continues to go between home and school) but they are also encouraged to choose and enjoy some more extended texts, ‘chapter books’ as they are often referred to by the children!

Approaches to writing

  • ‘Mark making’
  • ‘Sounds Write’
  • ‘Talk for Writing’
  • Phonics and spelling
  • Emergent writing
  • Shared Writing
  • Guided Writing/Independent Writing
  • Extended writing
  • Handwriting
  • Creative writing activities  


Reading schemes 

For Key Stage One and Reception home school reading books are taken from the Oxford Reading Tree scheme. For reading sessions, whole school use the Collins Big Cat scheme.


At St Michael’s we provide children with the opportunity to write every day and across a range of subjects. Pupils are taught to use correct spelling and punctuation and follow grammatical conventions; to organise their writing in logical and coherent forms; and to do this through a wide range of stimulating writing activities. Our International Primary Curriculum provides huge opportunities for further reading and writing in addition to the daily literacy lesson.


Parent Partnerships

Leaflets are available in the foyer explaining how you can support your child with their reading at home and the following 'Learning Together' workshops are run throughout the year:

  • Early reading development (for parents of children in Reception )
  • Letters and Sounds – Understanding synthetic, systematic phonics – for all parents
  • Key Stage 1 Reading and Maths Learning Together
  • Key Stage 2 English and Maths