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Reading is one of the skills that children learn to enable them to access the curriculum and the wider world!

At Ongar Place, we promote and encourage a lifelong love of reading by developing an interest in and a love of books, encouraging children to become attentive listeners and independent and reflective readers.

The structured teaching of phonics provides a firm foundation on which to build reading skills.  In Foundation Stage we introduce children to phonics and reading through the use the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised systematic synthetic phonics scheme.  This is continues in Year 1 and for any child in Year 2 and above who is not fully fluent at reading or has not passed the Phonics screening check. We provide daily engaging phonics lessons. In phonics, we teach children that the letters of the alphabet represent a different sound, that these can be used in a variety of combinations and are put together to make words. The children learn to recognise all of the different sounds and combinations that they might see when they are reading or writing.

Why learning to read is so important

  • Reading is essential for all subject areas and improves life chances.
  • Positive attitudes to reading and choosing to read have academic, social and emotional benefits for children.

How children learn to read

  • Phonics is the only route to decoding.
  • Learning to say the phonic sounds.
  • By blending phonic sounds to read words.
  • Increasing the child’s fluency in reading sounds, words and books.

As the children learn to read with fluency they begin to select books which interest them at an appropriate level, from the library and the classroom, under the guidance of the class teacher. The library is well stocked and appropriate books are indexed in line with Accelerated Reader. Regular quizzes, targets and rewards encourage readers and inform teachers. Classrooms have attractive book areas providing both a range of fiction and non-fiction texts, reflecting cultures and gender.

Daily reading time takes place in school and children have opportunities for independent reading, social reading time and book talk.