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St John's CE Primary School


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The teaching of reading is a real strength. Right from when they first join the school, children are taught phonics using an effective programme. Adults are experts in helping pupils learn to read.

Ofsted Sept22

Reading  (Please also look at our Phonics page)    At St John’s, we provide access to high quality texts, which will promote wonder and, through collaboration, generate trust in order to achieve. Books have been carefully selected to help develop children’s skills as a reader but also a passion and enthusiasm for reading. There is a broad range of subject matter, styles and levels of challenge. Children are immersed in high quality children’s literature during story time. The EEF (Education Endowment Fund) researched based evidence (diagram below), highlights the key strands of reading that form the skills that will be taught throughout the school.

As a school, we seek to ensure children’s love of reading will extend far beyond the classroom and allow them to build on their skills independently through a real wonder and thirst for knowledge. We have a fantastic library that we are developing to provide our pupils with a diverse range of reading materials.

Great Books Guide    Here are 100 books  that come recommended by the Book Trust. They are books to engage and excite children from Nursery to Year 6.


Please also visit your local library to see a huge range of books your child could choose from and enjoy.

eBooks     We have put together a list of free e-books that you can use with your children. 


You will need to join but it is free to use


You will need to join but it is free to use

Whole Class Reading (WCR)    At St John’s, children are taught the appropriate strategies in reading to help develop their comprehension skills, including word recognition, phonic skills and the use of picture and contextual cues. The whole class will be taught the same objectives and these will be covered in great depth to better prepare children for the expectation of written responses at the end of KS2.


Here are some examples of strategies we use to promote the development of reading:


  1. Whole class reading
  2. Book chosen to support into writing learning sequence
  3. Story time
  4. 1:1 reading


Children will be given reading books to take home each week and it is helpful if parents can make a brief comment in their child's reading record to help us understand how they are getting on with their reading at home. This is monitored by staff, with children being rewarded accordingly. All children are expected to read at least 3 times a week. We expect children to bring their reading books and record into school every day.


Teaching of reading skills   The teaching of reading skills follows the National Curriculum. The teaching is further broken down into 8 core strands as shown below.



Give/explain the meaning of words in context


Retrieve and record information/identify key details from fiction and non-fiction


Summarise main ideas from more than one paragraph


Make inferences from the text/explain and justify inferences with evidence from the text


Predict what might happen from details stated and implied


Identify/explain how information/narrative content is related and contribute to meaning as a whole


Identify/explain how meaning is enhanced through choice of words

and phrases


Make comparisons within the text




Accelerated Reader   is a computer program that we use to help us to  manage and monitor our children’s independent reading practice. Children pick  books at their own level and read them at their own pace. When finished,  a short quiz is taken, on the computer. (Passing the quiz is an indication that the child has understood what they have just read - this is the skill of fluency )


Accelerated Reader gives children and their teachers feedback based on the quiz results, which the teacher can then use to help children to set goals and direct ongoing reading practice.


Children using Accelerated Reader choose their own books to read, rather than having one assigned to them. This makes reading a much more enjoyable experience as they can choose books that are (in the main)  interesting to them.


Teachers and support staff will help children to  choose books at an appropriate readability level that are challenging without being frustrating, ensuring that your child can pass the quiz and experience success.


If children do not do well on the quiz, the teacher or support staff member may help your child:

  • Choose another book that is more appropriate.
  • Ask more probing questions as your child reads and before your child takes a quiz.
  • Pair your child with a partner, or even have the book read to your child.


In most cases, children really enjoy taking the quizzes. They read books at their appropriate reading and interest levels and are therefore likely to be successful. This will be satisfying and encouraging for for most of our children.


Best of all, they learn and grow at their own pace. Brilliant! 

Parents Guide to Accelerated Reader

Trust Link

St John's CE Primary School is a member of the Oxford Diocesan Schools Trust.