Reading at Heathcote Primary

Reading curriculum intent

At Heathcote Primary School, reading is promoted as an intrinsic part of teaching and learning. It forms a pivotal part of our curriculum. We recognise that the skill of reading provides children with access to the world around them and a wealth of knowledge which will support their learning and development in all other areas. However, we also believe that reading brings joy and experiences that cannot be achieved in any other way; discovering new worlds, reflecting on the past and exploring emotions from the viewpoints of others who are similar and very different. At Heathcote Primary School we have designed our early reading curriculum with the intent that all children, regardless of background, will become fluent, insightful readers. We have developed a curriculum that will instil in all children a love of reading that we hope will stay with them for life.

Reading curriculum implementation

Phonics

At Heathcote we teach phonics following the guidance from the Government’s Letters and Sounds program. Direct, focused phonics is taught every day in Reception and Key Stage 1. See Phonics for further information. We use Phonics Tracker to assess the children and ensure they are making good progress. At the end of Year One children complete a statutory Phonics Screening assessment. 

Reading scheme

We sourced our reading scheme from Peters Books, an incredibly experienced book seller focussed on providing books to schools with a huge range of books from all educational suppliers. They "band" all of the books from all schemes, using a universal "banding" system to ensure the books we have match the challenge and need our children require, and have provided the school with a fantastic variety of texts to provide our children with rich and varied reading material.

English curriculum

At Heathcote we have developed a text based curriculum whereby teachers use a variety of texts as a stimulus to explore the wider curriculum. All teachers have access to the Power of Reading books and teaching sequences. The Power of Reading teaching sequences focuses on quality children’s texts, including classic texts as well as modern texts that address issues of today. Power of Reading promotes creativity and supports our school’s ethos of developing a love of reading.

Our Reading School

To drive a love of reading we ensure our environment promotes reading, for example we have developed a central school library that can be accessed by all. Every classroom has its own book corner and staff are encouraged to be as creative as possible to entice children to want to read.