Reading Intent

By the time children leave The Orchards School, they leave as readers. We believe that the ability to read underpins all other areas of learning and as such, we look to apply reading skills at every opportunity. Orchards pupils are readers who have developed a lifelong love of reading, and who read because it is how they can learn more about the world around them. We will have provided them with the tools they need in order to confidently access the UKS2 curriculum at their Middle School and beyond.

At The Orchards School, we believe that the key to reading is not just decoding but comprehending:

  • When responding to a text, it is essential that pupils are able to justify, reason and back up their answers with evidence or opinions.
  • Knowledge and understanding of the world is key to comprehending a text and we look to make connections between wider areas of learning and the children’s own experiences.
  • A “thinking out loud” approach underpins our reading pedagogy; this allows us to model the range of skills needed to predict, question, retrieve from and summarise what we read. Through this approach, our pupils develop greater confidence and independence as readers, demonstrating high levels of enjoyment and comprehension.

Implementation In School:

  • High-quality ‘reading lessons’ start in Nursery where children focus on letters and sounds phase one. Their love of reading is nurtured and developed by introducing them to traditional nursery rhymes, songs and stories. See Appendix 1 for additional guidance on implementation of reading in Nursery.
  • Phonics teaching starts more formally in reception (using the RWI programme) and continues until children can decode confidently. See Appendix 2 for handwriting phrases to support visual recognition of letter shapes.
  • After children complete the RWI phonics programme, there is an increased focus on their comprehension skills. In years 2 and 3, children undertake a comprehension programme of study to bridge the gap between RWI phonics and KS2 Comprehension X. This programme of study involves developing our pupils’ comprehension skills whilst inspiring a love of reading. Whilst we continue to review the set 2 & 3 speed sounds, we work systematically to develop specific reading comprehension skills, using targeted Comprehension X Expert Tips.
  • Delivery of reading lessons in KS2 hooks on Comprehension X Expert Tips. Year 3 children use targeted Expert Tips which are embedded as part of provision within their reading lessons.
  • Year 4 start with the delivery of Comprehension X in the Autumn Term. When the scheme is completed, the children then continue to use the ‘Expert Tips’ within their reading lessons.
  • All children are exposed to a rich, varied reading diet, which includes a range of special books (selected from Pie Corbett’s Reading Spine) and key authors (see appendix). This is provided through a variety of approaches including:
    • Targeted reading lessons
    • High quality narrative drivers used for Writing
    • High quality topic focused texts in foundation subjects
    • Whole class texts – which are read purely for pleasure at the end of the school day
    • Accelerated Reader Scheme
    • Class readers; which are allocated based on reading ability
    • Independent readers for pupils
 Phonics & Read Write Inc ProgramComprehension Development OpportunitiesComprehension X Program
NurseryLetters and Sounds Phase OneTraditional Nursery RhymesSongsStoriesTargeted Expert Tips:Explore Vocabulary – Clarify Words and PhrasesPredict
ReceptionRead Write Inc PhonicsTraditional Nursery RhymesSongs StoriesTargeted Expert Tips:Explore Vocabulary – Clarify Words and Phrases Predict
  Year 1Read Write Inc PhonicsFred FingersFred TalkFred in my HeadTraditional Nursery RhymesSongsStoriesNarrative DriversTargeted Expert Tips:Stop and Check it makes sense – take action Read it again
    Year 2Read Write Inc PhonicsSet 2 & 3 Speed SoundsFred FingersFred TalkFred in my HeadTargeted Reading TextsNarrative DriversTopic Focused TextsWhole Class TextsClass ReadersAccelerated Reader SchemeIndependent ReadersTargeted Expert Tips:Ask a questionThink and RememberMake connections – search for clues
    Year 3 Regular RWI Phonics Fluency sessionsIntervention RWI Phonics for groups and individual where need identifiedRWI Comprehension TextsTargeted Reading TextsNarrative DriversTopic Focused TextsWhole Class TextsAccelerated Reader SchemeClass ReadersIndependent ReadersTargeted Expert Tips:Use text structures, features and languageVisualise – form a picture in your mindSummarise the textRWI Comprehension scheme Autumn TermApplication of scheme to whole class texts Spring & Summer Terms
      Year 4Regular RWI Phonics Fluency sessionsIntervention RWI Phonics for groups and individual where need identifiedComprehension X Stage 1 TextsTargeted Reading TextsNarrative DriversTopic Focused TextsWhole Class TextsAccelerated Reader SchemeClass ReadersIndependent ReadersComprehension Express Stage 1 for Autumn TermContinue with application of skills to whole class texts Spring & Summer Terms

Home Reading:

  • Children are encouraged to read at home on a daily basis. All children are given a Home- School Reading Diary at the start of the academic year in which their reading can be documented.
  • KS1 children, who are still following the RWI phonics scheme, will take home a paper copy of their most recent class text in addition to a specially selected text that will also match the colour band that they are currently working within during phonics sessions. Children will be expected to read at least one of these texts every night in order to further develop their phonics skills and strategies. When the current in-class text is changed, the home-reading selections will also be updated.
  • Supplementary to these texts, children will also take home a book of their own choice to share with an adult at home. These are chosen by the children; they may not be phonetically decodable but aim to promote a love of reading in the children and allow comprehension skills to be further developed.
  • KS2 children, have access to the Accelerated Reader program that provides them with a choice of books within their ZPD (Zone of Proximal Development). Quizzes are taken at the end of each book and staff can use these to monitor progress and adapt reading material to ensure suitable challenge. These are changed as children complete them.


Parent guide to Read Write Inc. Phonics | Oxford Owl

Accelerated Reader – AR Book Finder search engine for all books with quizzes.

Accelerated Reader – UK, Ireland and International ( – Further research information and resources about Accelerated reader and other supporting products.

By using this website you agree to accept our Privacy Policy and Terms & Conditions

Nursery funded places available. Book your tour to find out more.