Reading at school

At Montbelle we want our children to become enthusiastic, engaged readers and to develop a life-long love of books.  We introduce the children to a range of good quality fiction, non-fiction and poetry books through our whole-class, core-text approach to teaching reading, and during their weekly guided reading session.

In the early stages of reading, we teach children to decode words using phonic skills from the ‘Letters and Sounds’ teaching programme as our main approach, alongside which we teach sight vocabulary.  Once grasped, the focus for developing reading is on understanding and comprehension.  Your child will read with their class teacher at least once a week during their guided reading session, with a TA and also independently supported by teacher set activities during the rest of the week. We also have reading volunteers who may read with your child to support their learning. If you wish to become a reading volunteer please contact the office.

Reading at home

Developing readers will bring home levelled books (according to their stage of development). We the Oxford Reading Tree programme. Once children are more confident readers, they progress to the Oxford Reading Tree  ‘Treetops’ series, which are longer books with chapters. Independent readers will bring home a self-selected book from their class book corner or one they have borrowed from the school library.  Please encourage your child to change their book regularly so they can read each evening.

We ask for parental support in developing our young readers; your child should be reading at home, to an adult, for 10 minutes or more each day.  Parental support is hugely important for children in developing their reading skills, confidence and understanding.  Even if your child is an independent reader, it is still important for that they have an adult to listen to them and discuss the books they are reading.

How to support developing readers at home:

  • Try to listen to and read with your child regularly, 10 minutes a day is better than a longer session once a week.  It can help if a regular time is set aside so that it becomes part of a routine.
  • Find a quiet place to share books where you can feel comfortable and relaxed – learning to read needs to be a positive experience – build children’s confidence by praising their efforts.
  • Encourage your child to have a go at reading words, by using phonic skills to read any unfamiliar words, and by working on building up their sight vocabulary.
  • Talk about the meanings of words to help to develop your child’s understanding and use of language.
  • Encourage your child to read a range of texts such as stories, newspapers, comics, labels, poetry, non-fiction, tickets, signs, leaflets etc.
  • Read books to your child as well; if they see you enjoying a book it will encourage and motivate them to want to learn to read.
  • Ask them questions about the text to develop their understanding. Click here for some questions to ask your children about the texts they are reading.

Our library on the Key Stage 2 corridor (upper corridor) is open on a Monday evening for our school community to use and a range of books are available at lunchtimes for children to enjoy during free time.

During the year, Parent Workshops are delivered during the school year to support our parents understanding of Phonics and early acquisition of reading skills. National events such as World Book Day and Roald Dahl Day are celebrated in school, alongside other events which have included visits from authors, story telling workshops and even a stories around the camp fire event.