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Reading at Manea Community Primary School

At Manea Community Primary School, our aim is that when the children leave us at the end of Year 6 they will have a lifelong love of books and the printed word, and possess the tools needed to be confident, proficient readers. Reading is the an integral part of the curriculum and is a skill which underpins learning in all other areas.


For this reason, the development of reading forms a key part of our School Development Plan (SDP) and is an area of high priority across the school. Our aim, alongside equipping the children with all the skills they need to read successfully, is to provide an environment where reading is celebrated and is seen as something we do for sheer enjoyment as well as academic progress.


Please spend some time exploring this page to see how we develop the children's reading at Manea Community Primary School, and also to find ideas and activities to support your child's reading at home. 

Reading in Reception

From their very first days in Reception, children at Manea Community Primary School are exposed to an inspirational, text rich environment where books and stories are placed at the very heart of the curriculum. The children have free access to a well organised and well resourced Reading Area, as well as being encouraged to explore different text types around the learning environment as part of their Busy Learning.


The children's reading journey with us begins with daily story and song times. Each day, the Reception children come together to enjoy different stories, poems and non-fiction texts as well as learning a selection of core songs and rhymes. We know that there is a strong link between learning simple rhymes and becoming successful readers, and so this time is dedicated each day.


The children also begin to learn Phonics during the Autumn Term, based on the Letters and Sounds programme. Please click here to visit our Reception class page and find out more. Once the children have picked up enough of the single letter sounds to enable them to read simple words, phonetically decodable books will begin to be sent home to share with parents and carers.

Reading in Key Stage 1 

In Key Stage 1, our reading journey continues and by the end of Year 2 we aim for the majority of the children to be able to read with a confident level of fluency and a developing sense of expression. 


To support the children on this journey, we continue to teach Phonics from Phase 2 to Phase 6 throughout Key Stage 1. Due to our class structure and having three Year 1 & 2 classes, we are able to teach the children at the appropriate Phonic Phase to their needs. Please click here to visit the Year 1 & 2 page to find out more about how we teach Phonics at Manea Community Primary.


Alongside Phonics, we have a daily Reading Carousel to support the children's wider reading development. Over the course of the week, the children will complete a range of reading activities. Some of these are adult-led and some of these offer the children the ability to develop their independent reading skills;

  • A group guided reading session with the teacher which will focus on a text at the appropriate Phonic level or coloured Book Band for that group of children.
  • A comprehension activity which links to the book read in the guided reading session.
  • A Tier 2 activity which links to our Key Stage Tier 2 text.
  • A Phonic based reading activity which uses sounds the children have previously focused on.
  • A Tricky Word activity which allows the children to use and apply the Tricky Words they have been learning in Phonics.


In addition to our daily Phonics and Group Reading sessions, we also have a daily Tier 2 Story Time. This is an opportunity for the children to listen to and discuss a quality text which is above a level that they could read independently. Recent examples of our Tier 2 texts have been 'George's Marvellous Medicine' by Roald Dahl and 'The Sheep-Pig' by Dick King Smith. In these sessions, we aim to develop comprehension skills and vocabulary, adding interesting words from the text to our class Wow Word display, as well as the children's love of books and stories.


Once a week, each child will read on a 1:1 basis with a member of staff using a text which is at an appropriate Phonic level. This will be the same book that the children bring home to share with parents and carers through the week. We have developed a progression of reading targets for each of the coloured Book Band levels, and each child's current target will be written in their Reading Record to be shared with home.


We know from our recent EYFS/ Key Stage 1 Reading Audit that songs and rhymes are also an integral part of developing the children's reading skills, as they help to develop a sense of rhyme, rhythm and extended vocabulary. For this reason, we have introduced a daily Song Time which takes place just after the morning register and which the children love! We have carefully chosen a range of core songs to be learnt through the Key Stage and these can be found by clicking here.


Each class has their own Reading Area or Book Corner, which features a range of quality fiction, non-fiction and poetry texts. We also have the Reading Nook in our Outdoor Provision which houses an range of texts and reading activities. The children are encouraged to regularly use these areas as part of their daily Busy Learning times. 

Reading in Key Stage 2

By the time they enter Year 3, the majority of children will be able to read with a good level of fluency and expression, and with a growing comprehension of the texts they experience. 


As in Key Stage 1, our Key Stage 2 children take part in a Guided Reading session each day. Over the course of the week, the classes carry out a mixture of whole-class Guided Reading and adult-led reading in smaller groups. Before beginning any new text, the children spend time exploring the background behind it and also its Tier 2 and 3 vocabulary. This means that when the children finally begin to read the text itself, they will have the prior knowledge to help them comprehend what they are reading. Imagine having to read a text about, for example, caving, if you had no idea what what caving involved or any of the vocabulary associated with it. Through giving the children this knowledge before reading, we believe that they will experience a greater enjoyment of the text and a higher level of success.


In Key Stage 2, the children take part in the Accelerated Reader scheme. At regular intervals, the children carry out a Star Reader test which gives them a numerical reading range. The books the children choose to take home are then chosen from this range, ensuring that the books they read have both an appropriate level of success and challenge. Once a book is completed, the children take an Accelerated Reader comprehension quiz. An added benefit of the AR scheme is that it allows staff to track the children's reading progress and reading age, as well as giving a good indication of their level of comprehension. Please click here to find out more about AR.


As with the Key Stage 1 classrooms, each Key Stage 2 class has a dedicated Reading Area or Book Corner which includes not only Accelerated Reader books but also a range of quality texts for the children to access independently and for their own enjoyment.

Promoting a Lifelong Love of Reading

Here at Manea Community Primary School, we aim not only for our children to be successful in reading academically, but also to enjoy exploring texts and to carry a passion for books with them through their lives. 


For this reason, we have a dedicated Library space just outside the Hall, where children can find a wide range of fiction, poetry and non-fiction books, as well as children's newspapers and iPads for accessing electronic texts. Our Library space extends down the corridor into Key Stage 1, and this is where we store the majority of our Accelerated Reader books and our Key Stage 1 home readers and Guided Reading texts. Carry on further still and you will find our much loved 'big books' which can be used by classes across the school.


Each year, we celebrate national events like 'World Book Day' and are very proud that even during the school closure of 2021, we managed to deliver a COVID-safe version of World Book Day via the website - this included staff members sharing videos of them reading their favourite stories, a whole school story character competition, and links to lots of websites and activities that the children could access from home. Please click here to view World Book Day 2021 at Manea Community Primary School.


As part of our ongoing promotion of Reading through both lockdown periods, our Literacy Lead uploaded weekly Story Times for both EYFS/ Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2.

Supporting Your Child's Reading at Home

Many parents and carers ask how they can support their children's reading at home, and the answer is simple; read with your child and to your child. Even just ten minutes of reading at home each day can have a huge impact on your child's progress and wider academic achievement.


Over Lockdown, we compiled resources to help parents and carers support their children's reading and these are all still valuable now we are back at school. Please click here to visit this section of the website.