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Reading at BPS

At the Bilingual Primary School, we understand that the ability to read is a key life skill that opens up a new world of learning for children. We are passionate about reading and want our pupils to share this love of reading for enjoyment as well as learning.

The More that you Read...
Lottie and Mo

How we teach reading at BPS

From Reception to Year 6, we teach reading through sharing high quality texts that engage and inspire our pupils. Each year group has its own mini library and book corner where children can enjoy a wide range of fiction and non-fiction books.

Early Reading - Phonics

As a school we use a selection of strategies to enable children to become skilled readers. Early reading is taught through phonics. Phonics is an important tool that helps children to hear, read and write the different sounds of the English language. At the Bilingual Primary School, we believe that equipping children with the skills they need to decode early in their school careers will enable them to develop into confident readers.

The school follows the ‘Little Wandle Letters and Sounds’ Programme through which our pupils learn the 44 common sounds and how to sound-blend words for reading (decoding). For more information about Little Wandle please follow the link in the picture to the right. 

BIG CAT Phonics
Cosmo Reading

Guided Reading

At the Bilingual Primary School, we also teach children to read in teacher-led group or whole class guided reading sessions. Guided reading offers not only the opportunity to become confident and competent decoders but also to explore meaning, characterisation and settings and to develop the skills of inference and deduction.

How you can help at home

Reading to your child and listening to them read will really help your child to flourish. Reading helps your child’s wellbeing, develops imagination and has educational benefits too. Just a few minutes a day can have a big impact on children of all ages.

  • Encourage your child to read every day. Keep reading times short and fun. Just a few minutes a day really does make a difference. 
  • Still read to your child every day. Stories matter and children love hearing stories again and poring over the pictures. Non-fiction books can also be great to share and children enjoy finding out facts about topics that interest them.
  • Present reading as a treat! It’s a special time to snuggle up and enjoy a story. 
  • Make reading part of your routine. 
  • Take your child to the library. It is free and fun for children of all ages. 

Listening to your child read

Helping your child should be fun. Choose a time when you can relax and enjoy reading together. 

  • Create a calm environment by finding somewhere comfy and quiet to sit 
  • Look and sound positive as you listen to your child
  • Talk about the book before, during and after your child has read to you. 

Questions you could ask

Talking about books is a great way to make connections and develop understanding. 

  • What do you think the book is about?
  • Who is the author?
  • Who was your favourite character? Why?
  • What is happening in this picture?
  • Why do you think that has happened?
  • What do you think will happen next?

Reading Strategies for early readers

  • Look at the first letter
  • Use phonics - Sound out each sound and blend them together
  • Look for smaller words within word 
  • Be patient - give your child time to work out the word
  • Read the rest of the sentence to see what makes sense
  • If they are still struggling, it’s fine to read them the word!
Cat
Molly C Year 3

Reading Strategies for older pupils

At the Bilingual Primary School, we teach reading and comprehension skills through guided reading. We focus on developing the following areas:

  • Broadening and understanding vocabulary
  • Predicting
  • Questioning – Retrieval and inference

You can support your child by using these techniques at home.

Vocabulary

When reading, your child might come across complex vocabulary or English idioms (eg run of the mill, in the dog house). Encourage your child to notice when they come across a word or a phrase that does not make sense. Help them to work out the word by using one of these strategies:

  • reread the sentence
  • read ahead
  • break a word into chunks
  • think about what makes sense
  • use a dictionary or the internet to find out the meaning

Your child could write words or phrases that they are unsure of in their reading record to share with the class or their teacher.

Predicting

This is about working out what might happen next or what has previously happened based on what they have read.

Encourage your child to look at the cover, heading or illustration and make predictions about what they will be reading.

You can also share your ideas. You might use phrases like:

I wonder if….   I think that……  I imagine……     I suppose……

Questioning

Good readers ask questions to help deepen their understanding of the text.  At school we focus on two types of questions.

  1. Retrieval - When/Who/Where/What type questions.
  2. Inference – These questions do not always have a clear answer. Instead the reader has to look at clues in the text. They are often Why? type questions eg Why was she so angry? Why do you think the boy was crying?

Reading Records

At the end of the session, write a small comment about your child’s reading in their yellow reading record. Mention what they did well and what they found challenging. Let your child know what you are writing.

If you have any worries about your child’s reading, please talk to your child’s teacher.

We can:

  • offer reassurance and advice
  • suggest reading activities to do at home
  • support teaching letter sounds at home
  • target any extra adult support we may have at school to help support your child.
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