We aim to develop a love of books and reading. We do this through a combination of using high quality, exciting texts in class, teaching decoding and comprehension skills effectively, working with parents to help develop reading opportunities and enjoyment at home and by providing a structured, progressive approach to supporting reading at home with decodable books and books for pleasure.
We are very proud that our children achieve well in reading. In 2018, 100% of our Year 6 pupils achieved the expected Reading Standard compared to 75% Nationally.
Through our new, shortburst reading sessions, taught three times a week, our children learn to delve deeper in to their understanding of different texts. We teach the seven core reading comprehension skills –
- Creating a visual – use senses to create a mind picture, drama, freeze-framing, conscious alleys, creating pictures with colours or music. Why is this visual important to the story? How does this visual help you to better understand the story?
- Making a connection – think about the big ideas represented in the text, have contrasting and similar texts to share to show connections. How does the theme connect to the other texts you have read? How does the story connect to the world? What is the author’s message?
- Questioning – teachers to model asking thin questions (you can point to the answer in the text) and thick questions (answer can be supported by the text). Who? What? Where? When? Why? How?
- Determining importance – students look for the main ideas and most important details, focus on events that lead to the solution of the problem and when a character changes, post-its for the key ideas as they read. What was the problem? What was the solution to the problem? What events led to the solution of the problem? Did any of the characters change?
- Inferring – students use background knowledge and clues in the text to make an inference (something that the author does not come right out and tell you), encourage them to consider ‘why?’ questions, thought bubbles from pictures of characters, role play, change words by covering with post-its and see what happens. What new information are you able to figure out? Why do you think the character did……? Why do you think the character said…….? Why do you think the author wrote this text?
- Synthesising – students take the information from the text and tie it together, summarize the story, act as reporters, say who what where when why in short extract. Can you summarize the story?
- Noticing the author’s craft – students evaluate the suthor’s writing style, state what they did or did not like about the text, have extracts from the same author to compare and contrast, pick another book with the same theme but completely different style and show effect. What part of the text did you like most/ least? Did the author use figurative language, humour or suspense? Would you read more books by this author?
The children also read to adults in school. In Key Stage One this happens every day.
Phonics – We follow the teaching as set out in Letters and Sounds which we supplement in Key Stage One with Phonics Play and Spelling Play. We have our own Phonics Progression Map which is in line with current guidelines and offers challenging pace. We identify and support children who find it difficult to keep up with this pace by running interventions sessions which have proved effective at closing the gaps.
Would you like help supporting your child learning their Phonics? In order to support the teaching of the sounds effectively, please take a look at the video below –
At Seething and Mundham we deliver writing through the Talk for Writing strategy. We have chosen this strategy as it is based on the principles of how children learn and enables children to read and write independently for a variety of audiences and purposes within different subjects. A key feature is that children internalise the language structures needed to write through ‘talking the text’ as well as close reading. The Talk for Writing method enables children to imitate orally the language they need for a particular topic, before reading and analysing it, and then writing their own version. The approach moves from dependence towards independence with the teacher using shared and guided teaching to develop the ability in children to write creatively and powerfully. We have developed a core reading spine of quality fiction, poetry and non-fiction that all children experience and draw upon. In 2018 80% of our children achieved the expected standard, compared to 78% nationally.
In maths we are strong believers in the concrete pictorial abstract approach to teaching maths, whereby new concepts are introduced and previous ideas reinforced using a system of teaching using physical manipulatives, followed by use of pictorial representations before children apply learning into the abstract. We further believe in an approach of deepening our learners understanding as opposed to simply increasing the size of numbers. To assist us in this we use the power of maths as a means to support our delivery of maths mastery.
At Seething and Mundham we teach our subjects discretely, we feel this allows us to ensure clarity and understanding of the complex skills and levels of knowledge required. This however is not strictly limiting, and as such we will when opportunities arise reference skills and knowledge in other curriculum areas. This allows us to develop schemata as well as develop cultural capital and wider/deeper understanding.