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Early Reading

Early reading starts long before we meet your child in school


Children are made readers on the laps of their parents.

 -  Emilie Buchwald


At the beginning of the school year, all children take home picture books to practise story telling.  Children are encouraged to make up the story from the pictures, develop their vocabulary and storytelling skills e.g. character's speech, predicting what might happen, thinking of alternative settings or characters.  These are key skills that will support their reading and writing as they progress in Literacy. 


We teach phonics using the Read Write Inc programme.  As learn the initial sounds they will bring home a little workbook to practise letter formation and to help remember the sounds letters make.  They will also have access to Bug Club Phonics (via Active Learn) and teachers will allocate games in line with their learning in school.  Each half term the children are assessed to ensure that they are revising or learning  elements in line with their progress.  


In the early stages, children are taught to read words from the bank of sounds they have learnt and these words are sent home for children to practise with you.  Once they can read all Set 1 sounds within words, they begin reading Red Ditty books and will bring these home to celebrate their reading with you.


Click the link below to go to our Phonics page

PM Reading Scheme


We use PM books within our book band books, once children are reading at Green Storybook level, they have developed onsight reading and will also begin taking home a PM book to ensure their reading diet is enhanced with a range of texts and formats.  To support them reading these books, we have put together keyword lists of sight vocabulary that they need to learn by remembering, as they will not be able to decode all these words with their phonic knowledge.  As children are successful at each level, the next word list will be sent home.  There are three lists (for the first three levels - Dinosaur, Penguin & Owl words attached below), after this they will have gained a great bank of sight vocabulary to support their reading fluency.


This reading scheme helps to develop a breadth of reading skills including:

  • Picture cues
  • Context cues (making sense of the text where they are considering - which word might work?)
  • Phonic knowledge (using above cues and the sounds they know so far)
  • Sight vocabulary (high frequency words they can read on sight to support more fluent reading)
  • Enjoyment (the books are often about real life which the children will be able to relate to and discuss further).


When reading with your child, up to about level 4 or 5, please encourage your child to point to each word they read.  This ensures they are reading the words, not remembering (which can happen at early levels) and learning to track from left to right without skipping any words.


If you have any questions about reading, please do not hesitate to ask your child's teacher.