Your new design will be uploaded in:
Please contact Delivery Team on
0113 3200 750 if you have any queries.

Reading at Alanbrooke


At Alanbrooke, we want children to establish an appreciation and love of reading at all stages of their learning journey. We are committed to sharing high quality and vocabulary rich texts across the curriculum so that children may develop knowledge of themselves and the world in which they live. We aim to encourage and provide the opportunity for all children to flourish and shine within their reading. Alanbrooke’s aims are:

  • For children to read widely and often for both pleasure and information
  • To inspire a love, enthusiasm and passion for reading
  • To allow children to engage critically with a wide range of different genres of literature so they can appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
  • To support children in developing a range of decoding and comprehension skills so that they can read fluently and with understanding to access the curriculum
  • To fully equip children with the basic reading skills they need to enable them to be successful beyond primary school
  • To develop children’s understanding of language and vocabulary so that they can fully understand the deeper meaning of texts
  • To provide high quality texts and authors that feed pupils’ imagination and inspire wonder, joy and curiosity
  • To develop children who are confident with: tackling unfamiliar words, retrieving and inferring answers from the text, discussing and evaluating the authors’ language and
    structural choices, and explaining the meaning of words in context



Phonics and Early Reading

In Early Years and Key Stage 1, we use a wide range of approaches to develop children’s early reading skills, including shared reading, storytelling, and explicitly extending children’s vocabulary.  We believe that early reading requires the development of a broad and balanced approach, and that this will be more effective than focusing on any single aspect of early reading.

In Early Years, we have a strong focus on developing language and communication. This is especially important for young children and supports the development of a range of early literacy skills, as well
as their wider knowledge and understanding. To support language comprehension, we focus on vocabulary development, language structures and children’s wider understanding of the world (background knowledge) through storytelling and shared reading activities.

To support the development of decoding, we follow the Essential Letters and Sounds approach to phonics. Please see the Phonics curriculum page for more information on our phonics scheme.


Whole Class Reading

Reading is taught discretely in a daily, thirty-minute reading lesson. In years two to six, the key skills of reading are developed through guided access to beautiful, rich and authentic texts. Across the course of the school year, children systematically access a wide range of texts. 

Teachers introduce a whole text, pivotal moments or challenging content by activating schema: creating links between what the child already knows and the text they are about to access. Lessons may also involve pre-teaching vocabulary that children need to understand first to be able to access their reading. In all whole class reading lessons, children practice reading with fluency and expression. This can involve any number of key reading strategies:

  • cloze reading, in which pupils follow text read by the teacher and fill in ‘gaps’ that they leave;
  • choral reading, where pupils and staff read a passage aloud together;
  • echo reading, in which key tricky sentences are modelled by the teacher and repeated by the children with similar intonation and rhythm.
  • paired or group reading, with children reading to each other in small groups. 


Teachers then model and explicitly teach a key skill or concept to the class, such as making judgements about a character’s personality, empathising with a character in a dilemma or predicting what might happen next. Children are shown the process of being a reader before they work independently.

The main body of a whole class reading lesson should be centred on the rich exploration of a text, its language and the impact of the language used. Reading will not be reduced to “teaching to the test”, however there will be a clear and consistent focus on teaching test-style questions (assessment rubric) at the end of each lesson which are based on question stems from content domains and end of key stage assessments.

Individual Reading and Fluency

Children read often, giving them the practice that they need to decode, recognise words at sight and read with expression. Reading is integrated into all areas of the curriculum as a method of presenting information. Individual reading fluency and expression will be taught using the school’s current phonics and reading schemes and through whole class reading. Pupils currently using a reading scheme book will be listened to at least weekly by an adult in school. Pupils who do not pass the phonics screening check in Y1 will receive personalised intervention to support with their phonic strategies until they are reading and decoding with fluency. Pupils will receive regular opportunities to read for pleasure independently through the use of libraries and reading areas with high-quality, age/stage-appropriate texts which they can take home.


How do we promote a love of reading?


  • All staff are expert readers, modelling reading skills, discussing texts read with the pupils and sharing their own love of reading.
  • Teachers read class stories to promote a love and enjoyment of stories, immersing them in the world of imagination.
  • Whole class reading sessions allow time for pupils to discuss their reading, helping them to make sense of what they have read.
  • Each classroom has a selection of books as a mini library with a selection of fiction, non-fiction and poetry.
  • We ensure that we use books and high-quality texts to enrich learning across the curriculum. We choose both fiction and non-fiction books that link to our science and humanities themes.
  • In lessons across the curriculum we promote the use of reading as a vehicle for content.
  • We subscribe to Oxford Reading Buddy which is an online reading library where children have access to books matched to their current band.
  • Pupils are given a weekly library slot where they read the array of books we have on offer and choose a books to take home. This is in addition to their reading book from our reading scheme.
  • We have excellent links with our local library service who regularly come into school for story time sessions with Reception and Key Stage 1.
  • To encourage reading at home we reward pupils using our reward scheme. We want our pupils to be intrinsically motivated to read, however they are very passionate about our reading rewards so it is something we do for them. Children or their parents record when they have read in their reading record and this is tracked in school.  When children reach milestones, they receive a range of rewards across the year; these range from bookmarks to badges to a book of their choice. 
  • Every year we celebrate World Book Day. Children and staff love to dress up as their favourite characters from books.  We also celebrate other reading events such as 'Poetry Day'. 
  • We host parental engagement activities that not only engender a love of reading but give families who may not read at home a strong model and rationale for positive reading behaviours.  


 Reading progression Reception - Year 6