Literacy at Wheeler

We aim to develop in the children we teach an enthusiasm for literacy in all its forms and the confidence to express themselves both orally and through the written word.

By developing a comprehensive range of reading skills we aim to foster in the children a love and appreciation of a variety of literature. These skills will enable them to access all aspects of the curriculum.

English should develop pupil’s ability to communicate effectively in speech and writing and to listen with understanding. It should also enable them to be enthusiasitc, responsive and knowledgeable readers. In order to be able to participate fully in public, cultural and working life pupils need to be able to be able to speak, write and read standard English fluently and accurately.

Our Priority at Wheeler, when it comes to developing children across the core areas of literacy;

  • Promote a love of reading.
  • Encourage children to enjoy and share books.
  • Talk critically about book choice and author style.
  • Understand the differences and similarities with books, as well as knowing the different genres.

Reading at home with your child

As a school we use the Bug Club reading scheme by Pearson. Bug Club is the first whole-school reading programme that joins books with an immersive online reading world, to support the development today’s children in reading.

Pupils are encouraged to take reading books home on a regular basis, and we encourage all of our parents and carers to take time to listen to their children read. We kindly ask that you make a note of your reading session, in your child’s reading record. This helps the teacher to keep track of any additional progress your child makes with their reading, beyond the school day. Pupils also have individual access to our online reading platform. Here, your child will be able to access an online version of their current home reader and answer questions, as well as being able complete challenges relating to what they have just read. This is an excellent resource for children who wish to take ownership of their learning.

As well as the above, all children are provided with the opportunity to borrow one book each week from the library. Children are encouraged to choose books, which they are interested in and this helps to promote reading for pleasure. The library is also used for story time sessions. Children from Year 5 are chosen to be Junior Librarians, these ambassadors run the library on a daily basis. It is also expected that staff will actively seek opportunities for children to experience author visits and share books on a wider scale.

We would also encourage parents to not only practise reading and fluency but also take home reading sessions as an opportunity to develop comprehension skills.

Comprehension skills can be anything from predicting what might happen next to discussing why the author has chosen a particular word. Use the following questions to support your child with their reading and comprehension skills.

Questions about the book

  • Why did you choose this book?
  • What do you think will happen in the story?
  • If it is a non-fiction book: what do you hope to find out?

Halfway through

  • What has happened so far?
  • Who are the main characters?
  • How do you think the main characters are feeling now?
  • How would you describe the story so far? (Funny, exciting)
  • What might happen next?

Questions about non-fiction books:

  • What have you learned so far?
  • What are you hoping to find out next?
  • What is the most interesting thing you have learned?

At the end

  • Did you enjoy this book?
  • What was the best part of the story?
  • Would you recommend this book to a friend?
  • Why would you recommend it, or why wouldn’t you?
  • Would you choose more books by the same author?

Tops Tips for Home Reading

If your child is struggling to understand what you are reading, try some of these ideas:

  • Read the difficult part again.
  • Slow the reading down a bit.
  • Talk through anything that your child doesn’t understand.
  • Look at any pictures.

When your child has finished a book, you can check their understanding by encouraging them to try some of these activities:

  • As them to retell the story.
  • Draw pictures of scenes of characters from the book.
  • Write a letter to a character.
  • Describe some of the main characters. Try to include their thoughts and feelings.
  • Try to write a different ending to the story.
  • Make a list of the things you have learned from the book.

Ask your child to consider if they can think of any questions they might want want to ask their teacher or someone at home? For example:

  • Was there anything you didn’t understand?
  • Is there something you would like to know more about?
  • Did you find any words that you didn’t understand?

It is our intention that children at Wheeler Primary School develop a love for reading and enjoyment through books. With your support, we can encourage our children to achieve this, as well as developing and progressing in life-long, essential literacy skills.

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