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Reading at East Coker

Reading is highly-valued at East Coker and we are committed to teaching our pupils to become skilled readers who develop a comprehensive understanding of words, language and texts.

We aim to:

  • Instil children with a love of reading by sharing our passion for literature and helping them to recognise the value of reading as a life skill.
  • Enable children to become enthusiastic, independent and reflective readers who are exposed to a wide variety of authors, text types and genres.
  • Develop children’s confidence, fluency and independence when reading for different purposes.
  • Encourage children to reflect on what they have read and the language and punctuation choices made by the author.


Pupils should see reading as a pleasurable activity and must understand the importance of it to their emotional and academic progress.

Research has shown that success in reading is vital in our ability to understand, interpret and communicate with one another and the world around us.



The curriculum in the Foundation Stage offers many opportunities to develop the skills required for reading. Speaking and listening are two of the first skills to be focused upon; these are developed through listening to stories, shared reading, role-play, opportunities for talk through continuous provision and phonemic awareness.

Within Owls class, there are dedicated reading areas that promote the love of reading and teachers regularly model good reading behaviour by engaging children in comprehending the structure and meaning of stories.

As soon as children join us in Owls, they are taught phonics intensively using the Read Write Inc phonics scheme.



Key Stage 1

Throughout Key stage 1 children continue their reading journey using the Read, Write Inc. Scheme. Although very prescriptive, it follows a pattern which works well with the children's learning.  The children receive direct teaching before reading a book with their partner to practise their fluency and blending skills. Regular questioning allows the teacher to check understanding and delve deeper into inferred meaning. 

Pupils in KS1 will bring home their phonic group reader each week and are expected to read it several times at home with an adult. The children also have access to a range of free-choice books suited to their phonic ability to take home each week.

Towards the end of Year 2, where the need for specific phonic-based reading is less, greater focus will be put onto children’s reading comprehension skills.



Key Stage 2

As the children move into Key Stage 2, the focus moves from word-reading to more in depth understanding of what has been read and thinking critically about it.


Whole Class Guided Reading

Whole class guided reading takes place four times per week. The following reading structures are used flexibly across the key stage to meet the needs of different year groups and classes.


Extended Read

Fluency Read

Close Read

Most of session spent reading a longer text.

Children takes turns reading aloud (or silently to themselves UKS2).

Brief introduction to vocabulary as teacher reads

Questions and discussion throughout, to establish meaning

Brief introduction to vocabulary at start.

Short extract read aloud to children by teacher

Children read the same extract aloud to a partner, switch roles

and then repeat 2-3 times.

‘Performance’ of text for accountability.


Short/moderate length text read by children, step-by-step.

Questions and discussion throughout session.

Meaning established and analysed.


Texts will be chosen carefully to ensure they are age appropriate, diverse and link to other areas of the curriculum. They will encourage children to think about authors they like and to seek out books by the same author, that they would like to read independently. 


Independent Reading

In addition to guided reading sessions within school, children will also complete independent reading sessions in order to develop their reading stamina and promote reading for pleasure.

Recommended reading books are organised in a colour banded system and are closely to matched to children’s ability through the regular use of assessment. Children are encouraged to read for breadth and depth across a range of genres, themes and authors.

Incentives are also in place to increase children’s reading mileage.


Reading for Pleasure

As well as structured reading sessions, it is important that children have the opportunity to select from a range of reading material to read at their leisure. This could be a book, magazine or comic from their class reading area or a text from the library.

All classes have an allocated slot to visit the library and choose a book that they may take home to share with friends or family.



To develop a love of reading, we promote high quality texts during daily story time sessions in all classes. 

This develops pleasure in listening to stories that children would not be able to read independently.  Storytime sessions allow children of all attainment levels to be immersed in the same high-quality texts and promote valuable discussions. They provide teachers with the opportunity to model the fluency, pace, intonation and expression key elements of reading with the notion that children will try to emulate this in their own reading.


Assessing Progress in Reading

Children completing the Read Write Inc programme will be assessed every 6 weeks using the RWI assessments. This is to see how they are progressing and ensure that they are placed in the correct group.  Their progress is measured and they are re-grouped if necessary, thus meaning that children are always working at their achievement level and thereby facilitating accelerated progress.


Pupils in Year 1 are required to take part in the Phonics Screening Check to ensure that they are on track to meet reading expectations.


Pupils in Year 2, are required to complete statutory assessments (SATs) to check they have met reading expectations at the end of KS1.


In KS2, children’s progress reading fluency and comprehension skills will be monitored regularly within guided reading sessions. Independent reading will also be checked regularly to ensure breadth of text and reading mileage.

Each half-term, children will complete a short assessment to check reading fluency and understanding. This will enable teachers to guide pupils towards appropriate reading books.

Twice a year, pupils will complete a formal reading comprehension assessment (NFER), enabling progress and attainment to be measured against standardised scores and finally, reading attainment will be checked as they complete their statutory assessments at the end of KS2 (SATs).