Supporting Students with Reading

Reading Buddies

‘Reading Buddies’ has been set up to support eight of our students’ volunteering section for the Duke of Edinburgh Award. It has been running since March 2024. Students, completing DofE, are volunteering twice a week: one break time and one night after school. The students have been matched with younger students who they will read with. This will hopefully build confidence, help students with fluency and promote a love of reading in the younger students.

The club will run until the summer, with the prospect of launching something similar, open to more students, later in the year.

Reciprocal Reader

Reciprocal Reading will help children who:

  • Can read, but struggle to understand.
  • Can’t explain their understanding to others.
  • Read very slowly because they are focusing on accurate decoding, so never get the flow of the text nor grasp its meaning.
  • Read too fast and don’t pay attention to what they are reading.
  • Only read for plot events, not the details within the writing.
  • Lack confidence when reading new or unfamiliar texts.
  • Have a limited reading repertoire – who read only very undemanding texts or only texts by the same author for example.
  • Have impaired understanding through limited understanding of vocabulary.
  • Read text avidly, but never question the meaning of words or what they have just read, find it difficult to cope with specialist texts from different curriculum areas.

Reciprocal Reading...

  • Is a structured, discussion-based approach to teaching reading comprehension.
  • Develops children's understanding of a text.
  • Uses four strategies: predicting, clarifying, questioning and summarising.
  • Supports children to make sense of what they read and become more confident, independent readers through metacognitive strategies.

Read Like a...

All departments have considered the different ways we read for our curriculum subjects and, to help unify our approach to reading across school, we have created a bank of resources that will support students in recognising the range of reading skills they need as well as making explicit the links between subjects.

SEND Intervention

Our SEND team provide high quality literacy intervention:

  • EXACT testing is carried out with all year 7 students in September.
  • Reading Plus intervention is used for both Learning Zone classes (year 7 and year 8) as part of Learning Zone Key Skills curriculum.
  • Reading Plus intervention is offered to other students who are substantially below average in terms of reading fluency, comprehension and spelling.
  • Advice will be sought from the Educational Psychologist Service if a student is displaying persistent difficulties.
  • Students in the Learning Zone receive a differentiated version of the English Curriculum.
  • Learning Support Assistants (LSAs) focus on supporting students' reading as a priority.

How can you support your child?

How to encourage your child to read...

  • Read yourself! Set a good example by reading for fun and talking about the reading you do at work and at home. Let your child know that books and reading are an important part of your life.
  • Don’t stop reading to your child. Some children enjoy being read to long after they are fluent readers themselves.
  • Visit the library. Take the family to join the local library – it’s free! Make a weekly visit.
  • Make a time to read. Set aside a time for family reading – after school or before bedtime.
  • Don’t just read books. Encourage your child to read newspapers, TV guides and magazines.
  • Talk about books. Talk to your child and their friends about their book preferences. Talk about the books you like to read.
  • Let your child read with younger children. Encourage them to read to younger members of the family.
  • Keep in touch with school. Talk with teachers about your child’s reading. They will be able to tell you if your child needs any extra help. Find out which books your child is reading in class and read them as well. You can then discuss them together.
  • If English is not your child’s first language. You can buy dual language books. You can talk about books and stories in any language.

How to help them with reading...

  • Spot words inside words. Help them to spot words they know within larger, more complicated words.
  • Don’t make them try too hard! It doesn’t matter if you have to tell them the word sometimes.
  • Let them read their favourites. Don’t worry if they want to read the same books again, or stick to one kind of book. If they get really stuck, ask the librarian or teacher to recommend something they might like.
  • Make the story come to life. Encourage your child to read aloud with expression, so the story comes to life. This will help them more fluently.
  • Discuss books. Ask your child to tell you about the books they are reading: the type of book, the characters, the plot. Encourage them to have an opinion – was it a good book? Why?
  • Use a dictionary. Buy your child a dictionary and encourage them to use it to check the meanings of new words.
  • Turn on the subtitles. Research has shown that it can double the chance of your child leaving school as a proficient reader.