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St. Stephen's C.E.

(Aided) Primary School

Learn, Grow and Achieve Together through God's love


Reading has a high profile, it is the key to effective learning. Children are encouraged to appreciate books, to read independently, to make good progress and to take immense pleasure in reading. We aim to foster skills which will remain with the children for life. 

We aspire to support our children to become language rich. We believe that this can be best achieved through reading widely and reading ambitiously.  


The children will have started their reading journey in Reception class  where we encourage ‘book talk’. The children learn to handle books, they talk constantly about what’s happening and they begin to recognise a few key words. All this is happening alongside a phonics programme so that, when the children are learning letters and sounds, they can always apply these skills to the books they are reading. 


Moving on through Key Stage 1 (Year 1 and 2) as well as the teaching of phonics, there is a focus on comprehension and reading for enjoyment.


All children will have an opportunity to read weekly with support in school. We use a ‘banded’ scheme which is carefully graded to move the readers on; using one small step at a time.  We use a variety of reading books.  In the main they are from the Phonic Bug scheme and the Oxford Reading Tree scheme.


In addition to that ‘Guided Reading’ takes place in class.  Reading activities are used to further develop word recognition and comprehension skills. The children have the opportunity to experience many different types of texts. Each guided reading group works at least twice a week with the support of an adult.


Other activities during guided reading sessions vary but may include:

  • Comprehension: reading a section of the text independently and answering questions about it.
  • Reading Enrichment, the children read books/comics/newspapers or stories/poems/play or texts they have written themselves, quietly.
  • Follow-up Tasks, linked to a guided reading session.
  • Vocabulary tasks, linked to the text that is being read with the teacher


In all these activities, the teaching team will look for opportunities to deepen ‘book talk’ and to develop the children’s spoken vocabulary.


Reading for enjoyment is key to developing that love of reading which inspires children to explore, learn and grow, integrating ideas for themselves.  In class we spend time sharing our favourite books with the class and reading to them. Each term, the children study a variety of books, fiction and non-fiction.  The children have access to the class library and are able to take a book home weekly from the school library.


We appreciate the vital role that home plays in the development of our children's reading.  The children will bring their home / school reading book and record, home every night. Regular reading and discussion about what they are reading is really important. Reading to your child and talking to them about stories and books is also extremely beneficial. As they progress through Year 2, what a text infers becomes increasingly important. We really want you to comment in their reading records as it is an ideal way of communicating with school.

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St. Stephen's C.E.

(Aided) Primary School

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Welcome to St Stephen's. Our curriculum theme this half term is 'Our Precious Planet'. Our Christian Value is Courage and our British Value is Democracy.