St Oswald'sC of E AcademyChurch, School, Community


Welcome toSt Oswald'sC of E AcademyChurch, School, Community


Reading Statement of Intent


At St Oswald's we believe that all children should have the opportunity to be fluent, confident readers who are able to successfully comprehend and understand a wide range of texts.  We want children to develop a love of reading and become enthusiastic and motivated readers.  We want to develop children's confidence in reading and have a good knowledge of a range of authors and be able to understand more about the world in which they live through the knowledge they gain from texts.  We encourage inquisitive readers who ask questions about the text and enhance children’s vocabulary skills using tiered vocabulary.


We understand the importance of families in supporting children to develop both word reading and comprehension skills, so we encourage a home-school partnership which enables families to understand how to enhance skills being taught in school through good quality texts.

Early reading skills are embedded through the use of phonics, Read Write Inc, as well as discussions around books and their features.  Sharing stories, information texts and poetry with the whole class and in small groups during our guided reading sessions.  We follow a whole school reading scheme which supports both word reading and comprehension, until the children become free-readers.  We have a recommended book list for each key stage which supports children and parents, to choose books which provide the correct level of challenge and are engaging to read.


The promotion of the love of reading across school is developed through reading displays, class stories/novels, reading events such as World Book Day celebrations and book fairs as well as reading certificates.  Reading lies at the heart of our curriculum and we are dedicated to enabling our pupils to become lifelong readers and we believe reading is the key to academic success.


National Curriculum:

Our School Leadership Prioritises Reading


The headteacher, along with other leaders, prioritises reading at St Oswald's. The headteacher meets regurlarly with the Early Reading Lead, to discuss priorities in training, anaylyse data and look at ways forward. She often visits phonics lessons to check consistency across school. The headteacher gives the Reading Leader and staff the time and opportunity for training. 


Love of Reading is Promoted


The love of reading is promoted widely across school. Staff are passionate about reading, which inspires children. Core texts are read daily to children by the teacher. This gives the teacher chance to emphasise their story voice and illustrate their excitement at new stories. The teacher chooses their books using CLPE for guidance- Centre for Literacy in Primary Education - to ensure that the texts are of high quality and age appropriate. Reading corners have been developed to promote a love of reading. Each year group have a set list of texts that they want children to read by the end of the year. This encourages children to take the books home, therefore improving their vocabulary, fluency and excitement around reading. In addition to this, teachers display recommended books in their book area, to encourage children to want to read them. In our reading diaries, parents are given ideas on how to support children at home with reading. This includes the phonics sounds and comprehension questions.



Content and Sequence Supports Progress


At St Oswald's, all staff are highly trained in delivering the Read, Write, Inc Phonic programme.



The programme has a strong focus on teaching children to know and remember more. Children are taught daily, in small groups, from Reception upwards. The small groups children are in ensure that all children are taught at their appropriate level, which results in good progress being made. The RWI programme supports the teach simply model:


Review/ Revisit- Previously taught sounds and words are continuously reviewed and revisited at the beginning of every RWI Phonics lesson. 


Teach Simply – Children are taught a new sound following the same sequence daily.


Practice Thoroughly- Children have the opportunity to practise reading the sound in words, including multi-syllabic words. 


Apply- Children apply reading their new sounds in alien words and in closely matched, phonically decodable books. 


Assess- Children are regularly assessed by the Reading Leader. Teachers assess throughout the lesson to check that children understand.

‘Spotlight children’ (children who are not making as much progress as the rest) are sat in the focus of the teacher, to ensure they don’t get left behind. 


Although our intention is for children to ‘keep up’, not ‘catch up’, if the Reading Leader identifies that any children are falling behind, plans are immediately put in place to support catch up. If needed, children are also assessed in KS2. Children in Foundation Stage- to Y4 have RWI Phonics lessons, if needed.


Please click on the grid below to see how we want children to progress through the RWI programme and what we expect them to know by the end of Foundation, Year 1 and Year 2. 


RWI Termly Progression Grid


Pupils Falling Behind Catch Up Quickly


The Reading Leader quickly identifies children who are falling behind and discusses them with the class teacher. Children are assessed every half term, but they can be assessed sooner than this, if the Reading Leader and Reading Teacher thinks this is necessary. The Reading Leader puts together a support plan for these children and shares these with the teachers and teaching assistants. These support plans include five layers of provision to be put in place for children. 


Arrangements for EYFS/KS1:

  1. The daily phonics lesson is taught robustly. 
  2. The child has 1:1 daily phonics tutoring every afternoon. This is delivered by a trained phonics tutor.
  3. Virtual classroom links (extra phonics lessons) are sent home to parents for extra practice.
  4. Children are given extra time on an ipad to watch the virtual links in school. 
  5. Teachers have an extra 5 minute phonics lesson in an afternoon. 


Arrangements for KS2:

    1. RWI spelling programme is used to support use of phonics into writing.

    2. Additional phonics intervention is put in place to support individuals who require this.

    3. Some pupils continue to access RWI daily phonics where required. 


Phonics from the Beginning of Reception


Phonics is taught from the very beginning of Foundation Stage 2. If children are ready, some of the sounds are taught from the Summer term of Foundation Stage 1. We believe that a strong start in Reception has a big impact on children’s progress and confidence in reading. By the end of the Foundation Stage, we want children to be able to read all of the Set 1 and Set 2 sounds in words. Children are identified from an the beginning if they are falling behind. 


Phonically Decodable Books


From Foundation Stage 1, library books are sent home with children. Their focus is language acquisition and listening to stories being read to them. As children begin Read, Write, Inc, children are sent home with sound cards to practise their sounds. When they are secure with their understanding of sounds, children will be given virtual links for games to practise their oral blending. Following this, children will be sent home with sound blending books. When children move into the Ditty group, they will take a perfectly matched phonically decodable book home with them. This continues, until children have moved securely off the programme. As well as a phonically, decodable book, children will take a library book home with them. This is to encourage parents to read to their children and develop their vocabulary. Books are changed weekly, so children have time to practise their phonics sounds, as well as building their fluency. If children struggle with their fluency, there are extra fluency links that can be sent home to support children, as well as classroom interventions. 


Staff are Early Reading Experts


Most staff at St Oswald's, from nursery to KS2, have been trained in RWI phonics. The Reading Leader attends half termly training sessions to ensure that she is aware of any updates. This is then relayed back to staff in school. All staff have access to the virtual classroom, where they have a large range of training videos for each aspect of phonics. The Reading Leader directs staff to training videos and staff are given time to watch them. In addition to this, the Reading Leader holds training sessions monthly for reading staff. St Oswald's partake in a RWI Development Day, where a RWI expert visits the lessons and offers bespoke training.

Pathways to Write


We follow a Mastery approach to English through the programme ‘Pathways to Write.’ Units of work are delivered using high quality texts and children in all year groups are given varied opportunities for writing. Skills are built up through repetition within the units, and children apply these skills in the writing activities provided.  Many opportunities for widening children’s vocabulary are given through the Pathways to Write approach and this builds on the extensive work we do in school to provide our children with a rich and varied vocabulary.  


You will find the end of year expectations for writing, reading and spoken language for each of our year groups in the attached documents. For further detail on the skills that your children are learning on a termly basis, please contact your class teacher.


Writing Statement of Intent


At St Oswald’s C of E Academy, children are taught writing skills through studying a range of fiction and non-fiction texts, including the use of teacher-produced models for writing. In EYFS and Key Stage 1, children are encouraged to learn texts by heart, before innovating and then applying more independent changes to the model until they can write freely with confidence. This helps them to understand the key language and layout features of different text types.


 In Key Stage 1, picture books are used as a visual stimulus to develop vocabulary choices and composition. By Upper Key Stage 2, children engage in novel studies, as well as writing independently and freely at length.  Writing is completed under the banner of the topic where possible.  Children write at length during their topic times as well which ensures that skills taught during the specific writing and grammar sessions are rehearsed and refined independently.


Pupils are taught to plan, revise and evaluate their writing. To be able to do this effectively, they will focus on developing effective transcription and composition. They will also develop an awareness of the audience, purpose and context, and an increasingly wide knowledge of vocabulary and grammar. We also intend for pupils to leave school being able to use fluent, legible and speedy handwriting.

With regards to Spelling, teachers will show pupils how to understand the relationships between words, how to understand nuances in meaning, and how to develop their understanding of, and ability to use, figurative language. They will also teach pupils how to work out and clarify the meanings of unknown words and words with more than one meaning. Pupils will be taught to control their speaking and writing consciously and to use Standard English.



Oracy Statement of Intent


Throughout the school children are given the opportunity to increase their spoken vocabulary through many activities embedded within classroom practice.


Talk for Writing, 1:1 activities with adults, small group work and class performances.

Teachers and support staff are tasked with improving the confidence and competence of their children with spoken word - as well as their listening skills.  Through small group work and focused group work in all areas of the curriculum children are exposed to language and grammar which is challenging and specific to their learning.


Conscience alleys and other dramatic practice will expose children to opportunities to be in role and to also select appropriate language for the situation. 


We value the importance of drama. Drama is a valuable tool for raising self-expression, confidence and self-esteem. Drama is also taught as a stimulus for other subject areas. The children also gain experiences through watching visiting theatre groups and by participating in workshops.


Our Handwriting Scheme