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Reading is a fundamental life skill and as such we place a huge amount of importance on the development of good phonological knowledge and the acquisition of early reading skills.


Here at St Cuthbert's, we have chosen to follow the LIttle Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised phonics programme.  This is a DfE validated SSP programme (systamatic, synthetic phonics programme) to ensure the teaching of phonics is consistent and of high quality throughout the the school.

In the Early Years (Nursery & Reception) and Year 1, daily systematic, synthetic phonics sessions are taught to all children.  Initially, these sessions are for 10 minutes, building up to 30 minutes in Reception and year 1.

Children are screened regularly to allow for keep-up sessions to be taught to ensure conitnued progress is achieved.

We timetable daily phonics lessons for any child in year 2 and above who is not fully fluent at reading or did not passed the phonics screening check (PSC) in year 1. These children urgently need to catch up, so the gap between themselves and their peers does not widen. We use the Rapid Catch-up assessments to identify the gaps in their phonic knowledge and teach to these using the Rapid Catch-up resources – at pace.

The pupils in years 2 to 6 who are on-track with their phonological development are taught age-appropriate spellings, which are sent home each week.

For any advice on how to support your child at home, please speak to your child's class teacher.  You can also visit the parent section of the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised website.



Reading in the Early Years & Year 1

Children in Early Years read to an adult team member at least once a week. Picture books and library books of interest are sent home weekly. 

Reading books linked to their weekly phonics are sent home when the teachers feels the child is ready to access the books in relation to their phonological knowledge.  These books will be read three times in class, with the teacher/teaching assisstant.  They are then sent home to continue reading practise.

Reading in Year 2

All children are heard read at least once a week by an adult in class during the week. 

Adult volunteers also attend school regularly to listen to readers but we encourage parents to listen to their child read every day and record what they have read and how they have read in the reading journals.

Reading in Years 3 to 6

All children are heard read at least once a week by the class teacher in Guided Reading sessions and at least once every half term on an individual basis.

Adult volunteers also attend school regularly to listen to readers but we encourage parents to listen to their child read every day and record what they have read and how they have read in the reading journals.

Guided Reading

Guided reading takes place in Year 2 - Year 6 each week, taking place outside English lessons.  These sessions, either small group or whole class, are designed to teach children the necessary skills for reading well and to assist teachers in monitoring children’s progress in reading.

The school has a subscription with First News, a children’s newspaper, which is published each week. Classes have access to the newspaper at different times throughout the week.

The School Library

Our school library is now a welcoming place where children want to come and read!  It has recently been moved to its own dedicated room with access available at both playtime and lunchtime. 

It now houses all our fiction and non-fiction reading books. The library reference books have been catalogued using the Dewey system and library skills training is given to all children so they can learn to use the library properly to support their learning. All classes are encouraged to use the library as regularly as possible to engage children in the wonder of books and the joy of reading. 

Inclusive Practice

We endeavour to ensure that all pupils have access to the school curriculum and all school activities. We help all pupils achieve to the best of their abilities, despite any difficulty or disability they may have. In order to ensure this happens across the full curriculum we:

  • Prioritise Quality First Teaching, adapted, to help children with identified needs access their learning. This is regularly monitored and continually developed.
  • Ensure that teaching staff are aware of and sensitive to the needs of all pupils, teaching pupils in a way that is more appropriate to their needs.
  • Work in partnership with parents/ carers, pupils and relevant external agencies in order to provide for children’s special educational needs and disabilities.
  • To make suitable provision for children with SEND to fully develop their abilities, interests and aptitudes and gain maximum access to the curriculum.
  • Ensure that all children with SEND are fully included in all activities of the school in order to promote the highest levels of achievement.
  • Promote self-worth and enthusiasm by encouraging independence at all age and ability            
  • Ensure that enrichment opportunities stimulate and motivate learning.
  • Utilise specialist group support from outside agencies e.g. Speech and Language Therapy
  • Give every child the entitlement to a sense of achievement.
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