We aim for our nurture pupils to foster a love and enjoyment of reading which encourages all children to read regularly both at home and in school. There is a dedicated story time session incorporated into the Barrow Hill structure for all pupils and reading monitors are encouraged to organise the library corner. We aim to promote a child’s love of reading and support their communication and language, which is imperative in developing reading skills.
Reading is a life skill and within the academy’s curriculum it is the most fundamental transferable skill, as it makes learning accessible to all pupils. We encourage and develop young people’s reading:
•By embedding reading across the curriculum, at all stages
•Through a formal programme of identification and intervention for pupils who are not meeting age-expected standards in reading and spelling
•With a graduated response to meet the needs of pupils, including a dedicated phonics programme for older pupils who have yet to establish their reading skills.
The academy's curriculum intent is built upon the principle that young people will be fully prepared for the next stage of transition, whether that be a return to mainstream school, or moving on to a new destination. In all cases pupils are required to have secured the literacy (and numeracy) skills to successfully transition to the next phase, including that of adult life. Reading levels on entry vary widely owing to the transient nature of our pupils coming to roll. Pupils will have experienced different approaches to reading, again to varying degrees of quality and with differing levels of impact. Some pupils will have experienced significant turbulence in their education and are likely to have knowledge and skill gaps. In particular, some pupils will be out of the habit of reading regularly. Therefore, our strategy comprises of three levels of intervention:
Level 1 Reading across the curriculum
The academy plans reading into its curriculum for all pupils. In all KS3 and 4 subjects, reading and other literacy activities are planned into the medium-term plan, with varying opportunities to read, write and access different reading materials in all subjects across the curriculum.
Literacy opportunities are highlighted in every medium- term plan in all subjects
For our older pupils we aim for them to be functional readers in order for them to be successful citizens. All pupils have timetabled group English Language lessons or are taught on a 1:1 basis.
Level 2 Intervention available to all pupils
•All secondary pupils undertake a baseline reading age test on entry as part of the induction programme using Lexplore. The test identifies trends in reading skills. Lexplore uses eye tracking technology to assess reading speed and provide further information about keywords or phrases that are found challenging. Lexplore is able to advise on other suitable literacy activities or intervention strategies for a pupil.
Spelling tests are embedded into the tutor time programme
There is a word of the week as part of the tutor time programme to increase the pupil's exposure to new words.
Year 11 pupils engage in reading for pleasure and have the opportunity to read on a one to one basis with staff
Level 3 Bespoke and individualised intervention for identified pupils
•Pupils identified as needing a more forensic level of reading intervention, on entry, through benchmarking and from the outcomes of the level 2 interventions, will access a more bespoke level of intervention
•Identified pupils will follow the Read Write Ink: Fresh Start programme of phonics for older pupils. This programme is a structured synthetic phonics programme that teaches both reading and spelling. The child progresses through the scheme according to their individual needs. The fresh start materials cater for older pupils.
Our Assistant Headteacher, Melanie Stevenson, is leading on our reading and phonics programme across the academy. We are currently developing our 5 year reading strategy of which we are in year 2.
We would encourage all parents to read with their child. To help develop your child's reading ability, there are age specific books which you can use from school or purchase for your child to read at home. The Barrington Stoke reading series will allow your child to read books that will develop their reading age over time.
This is some of our staff reading is unusual places demonstrating their love of reading!