At Catshill First School and Nursery we believe that reading is the life skill that enables our pupils to access all aspects of learning. We ensure that all children are taught the essential skills so that they are able to read and write with confidence, fluency and secure understanding.

We provide a range of high quality texts and have inspiring reading events including visits to our local library.  It is our belief that we inspire a life-long love of reading.

We have a consistent approach to the teaching of reading across the curriculum and widen children’s reading experiences whilst offering challenge to all pupils.  We target support for those who need it to keep up with National standards.

We recognise that research shows that teaching systematic synthetic phonics is the most effective approach for building early reading skills in Reception and Year 1. To enable our pupils to develop a strong phonic awareness, with the ability to blend and decode confidently, we have chosen to use a DfE validated synthetic phonics programme called Rocket Phonics.

This systematic programme is linked directly to a scheme of reading books published by Hodder and Stoughton Education that can be closely matched to each individual phonic ability.  We have a variety of other fully decodable books to draw from, offering our pupils a broad reading experience. Our reading curriculum promotes confidence by enabling children to read and reread texts that inspire a love of reading.

Support to keep up

All staff at Catshill First School and Nursery monitor pupils closely through  assessment and observations, identifying those who require further challenge or additional support to keep up with National standards. Using Rocket Phonics, interventions are planned for by assessing individual gaps in phonic knowledge.  

Reading at home

We value the important role that parents play in developing children’s reading. Our children each have a reading diary to maintain the link between reading at school and home. Pupils take home books for reading practice that are matched to their phonic stage. We actively encourage reading for enjoyment where pupils choose books according to their interests and likes as well as opportunities to visit the local library outside of school.

The English Alphabetic Code: A Guide for parents, carers and families

This short video for parents, carers and families explains what the English Alphabetic code is and how we teach it through the Rocket Phonics SSP Programme