At Holy Cross, we have a large selection of books throughout school from a variety of authors and genres. Books at Holy Cross are grouped according to their complexity and each class has a mixture of reading materials suitable to the children that are in those classes. In Key Stage 1 children receive three books. The first book is phonetically decodable which links to the phonics level being taught in the class. The second book is from the colour bands, featuring repeated texts. These books allow the children to read many high frequency words and explore more challenging vocabulary. The third book is a library book. Parents and cares are asked to read the library book aloud to their child. This supports building a love of stories and many other texts. Children hear interesting vocabulary and enjoy listening to character voices. This approach fosters a love of reading and ensures a rounded experience.
Teachers and teaching assistants listen to each child read at least once a week. The child’s reading ability is closely monitored by staff to ensure each child is making the expected level of progress. Lunchtime staff, students and parent helpers also listen to children for an additional read where possible. Children who are not making the expected level of progress are targeted by the class teacher and booster strategies are put in place. Children in Key Stage 2 also have allocated book colours and are regularly checked to ensure they are reading at the correct level.
Our children also have access to online reading books using Rising Stars. Access to the online reading books allowed our children to continue with regular access to quality texts to read during the remote teaching months. Teachers could continue hearing children read through the parent videos that were uploaded to the Student Portfolios on Class Dojo. Our children continue to have access to the online reading books.
It is important at Holy Cross, that the children have a good understanding of what they are reading, so therefore can talk about the story, predict endings, answer questions and use inference and relate to personal experiences. Reading is a priority at Holy Cross Primary. Staff communicate frequently with parents via the children’s reading records and through Class Dojo. Staff support parents by posting videos about reading on their newsfeed. They also promote reading by sharing home learning experiences in the class. Every teacher promotes reading by giving rewards for regular reading at home. Children receive, stickers, certificates, and prizes for reading often. We also have close links with Hucknall Library and visit the library every term. The school promote the reading challenges that are run by the library and the children that participate are celebrated in whole school assemblies. In line with our motto, we would like children to have a love of books, value reading materials and challenge themselves to read frequently.