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Castleview School

Castleview School

Exceptional Schools Award 360 award


We aim to provide a stimulating and dynamic environment, where children can interact with books, print and spoken language.

We promote enjoyment of a wide range of genres and encourage children’s own interests. We place great importance on ‘reading for meaning’.  As reading is a complex skill, we do not limit the children to one approach. We use a diversity of methods, matching them to each child’s needs. Children use their reading for learning across the curriculum and we develop their skills in reading through a variety of learning experiences.

The teaching of reading begins in Nursery where the children are introduced to letter sounds (not letter names), and over the course of the year, become familiar with all the initial sounds of the letters of the alphabet.  These are not taught in alphabetical order, but follow the order prescribed in the Read Write Inc. (RWI) Phonics programme. 

Once the children are confident of the initial sounds, they are taught to segment and blend the letters in words in order to decode (read) and in order to encode (write).  The children usually begin to do this in Reception, following the structure of the RWI Phonics programme, where they are grouped according to their rate of progress. 

In Years 1 & 2, the children continue to follow the programme, again working in groups determined by rate of progress.  During their phonics sessions, as well as revising and learning new phonic sounds, the children will apply and develop their phonic and reading skills whilst reading a range of phonic books, both fiction and non-fiction.  The children are encouraged to develop the ability to read at speed, with fluency and expression, and to read ‘like a story-teller’ and discuss many aspects of the book in order to answer comprehension questions verbally.  The content of these books becomes gradually more complex.

Once pupils are able to decode confidently, the focus shifts to developing pupils’ comprehension skills. Comprehension skills are taught through our RWI Comprehension and Literacy and Language programmes.  Pupils across Years 3 & 4 and Years 5 & 6 are grouped according to their reading ability and progress rather than age. The RWI Comprehension and Literacy and Language programmes develop children’s comprehension of, and response to, a variety of texts so that they become critical thinkers engaging with texts. Comprehension activities are designed to help children to infer, summarise, question, clarify, predict and argue a point of view, based on evidence from the text. The children also make connections between texts and their own experiences. We use higher order questioning to ensure pupils reach age-related expectations, and beyond, and that they are well challenged.

Click on the link below to learn how to pronounce pure sounds from Set 1 Sounds through to Set 3.