At Ratby we believe that all pupils should have the opportunity to be fluent, confident readers who are able to successfully comprehend and understand a wide range of texts. With these texts, children develop their comprehension skills and have access to a richer vocabulary. We want pupils to develop a love of reading and a good knowledge of a range of authors. By the end of their time at primary school, all children should be able to read fluently, and with confidence in any subject. We do not put ceilings on what pupils can achieve in reading and we do not hold pre-conceptions about any pupils’ ability to make progress. We understand the importance of parents and carers in supporting their children to develop both word reading and comprehension skills, and so we want to encourage a home-school partnership, which enables parents and carers to understand how to enhance the skills being taught in school through good quality texts.


Reading in Class

Teachers read regularly to the children through modelled reading, shared stories, poems and information books. Teachers and children really enjoy sharing books and listening to stories, which provides opportunities to visualise, develop their imagination and to learn new vocabulary.

We have daily Guided Reading and or Whole Class Reading sessions in all classes and our teachers record our progress as we read. We also have home school diaries and we, our teachers and our parents write comments to each other about how well we are doing.  We have lots of books to choose from within our Guided Reading schemes.  At Ratby Primary School we use Rigby Star, Phonic Bugs, Project X and Rapid Readers.  We also take a choice book which we can choose from our reading areas or the library.

Across a half term we ensure children have the opportunity to read a range of genres and develop the reading skills in a number of areas. Below is a typical plan for the half term

Week 1Week 2Week 3Week 4Week 5Week 6
FictionNon-FictionPoetry/Songs/ FilmFictionNon-FictionPoetry/Songs/Film
TuesdayInferenceRetrieve & ExplainInferenceRetrieve & ExplainInferenceRetrieve & Explain
WednesdayInferenceRetrieve & ExplainInferenceRetrieve & ExplainInferenceRetrieve & Explain
ThursdayInferenceRetrieve & ExplainInferenceRetrieve & ExplainInferenceRetrieve & Explain
FridayPredictionSequencing & SummarisingPredictionSequencing & SummarisingPredictionSequencing & Summarising


Mastery in phonics is fundamental to children being able to access a broad range of fiction and non-fiction texts, across the curriculum. Phonics is taught daily, with a drive to address the needs of all learners. During the academic year, parents are invited to workshops and practical sessions to demonstrate letter to sound correspondence and promote consistent use of the school’s scheme – ‘Letters and sounds’.  Those children struggling in phonics are not left behind because the school employs a range of strategies to close the gap, including precision teaching, direct phonics and follow-up sessions.

Children are expected to read at home and the school reading scheme is carefully matched, in the first instance, to children’s phonic phases.  As children become more fluent, we help them make book choices, related to their interest and ensure that questioning is carefully scaffolded.  For EYFS and KS1, phonic support packs are sent home regularly to consolidate in-class learning and to inform the parents of gaps identified from recent assessments.

Pupils who do not pass their Phonics Screening Test continue to have intervention to support the acquisition of these key skills.

Individual reading takes place for all children in EYFS and KS1 regularly and guided reading groups are used alongside whole class reading to model and assess skills and ability. In order to develop reading for meaning, we teach all the reading strands from the National Curriculum as follows:

  • Decoding
  • Retrieving/recording/identifying  information
  • Summarising and predicting
  • Inference
  • Meaning and its enhancements
  • Comparisons within and across texts

In years 2 to 6, children take part in daily whole class reading sessions. The first and last session of the week uses the class text and focuses on prediction, summary and retrieval skills. The first session of the week features a class quiz and ends with a philosophy for children question. These sessions allow children to gain a clear understanding of the reading process and interpret meaning in a scaffolded, supported and independent way. Teachers are able to hear individual children read aloud during these sessions and within cross-curricular subjects. Whole class reading incorporates poetry, drama, music, fiction, non-fiction and debating opportunities in order to engage children and develop empathy. During the sessions, support is offered to the less confident readers and challenge given to those who are greater depth. Wherever possible, children’s vocabulary is acquired and enhanced as part of shared, guided and individual reading.

All children in all classes have 15 minutes have a daily reading for pleasure session where the Teacher reads aloud to the class without interruption for the simple pleasure- to enjoy reading.

The reading environment in each class and school library engages and promotes a range of books with a strong emphasis on parental partnerships and volunteers.

Any feedback and marking is given within the session where possible and teachers use AFL to identify those children who need help with particular skills, ensuring they are scaffolded/supported as appropriate. Assessments and tracking is carried out using Reading Pro and PIXL tests and ongoing formative assessment sheets. These help to plan targeted intervention and close gaps as quickly as possible.


  • Pupils will enjoy reading across a range of genres
  • Pupils of all abilities will be able to succeed in all reading lessons
  • Pupils will use a range of strategies for decoding words, not solely relying on phonics
  • Pupils will have a good knowledge of a range of authors
  • Pupils will be ready to read in any subject in their forthcoming secondary education
  • Parents and carers will have a good understanding of how they can support reading and home, and contribute regularly to home-school records
  • The % of pupils working at ARE within each year group will be at least in line with national averages.
  • The % of pupils working at Greater Depth within each year group will be at least in line with national average
  • The will be no significant gaps in the progress of different groups of pupils

Performance Poetry

A performance poetry competition is held once a term. There are 3 categories:

  • EYFS
  • KS1
  • Key Stage 2

Each term the pupils in each class work together to learn a new poem to perform to the rest of the phase and our judges. The judging panel is made up of the Headteacher and members of the Governing Body who judge each performance, taking into account: entertainment, clarity of voices, togetherness, choreography, props and resources. Each term the winning class receive the Performance Poetry Cup.


We visit our fantastic library regularly to choose books that we enjoy.  There are a range of fantastic fiction and non-fiction books to choose from.  Every class is allocated a time to visit the library each week to read or choose their own free choice books.

We have Year 6 Librarians to help in the library they run a ‘Reading Ambassadors’ lunchtime club every Monday lunchtime.  The older children read with younger children and help them to apply all of the strategies they are learning to read unknown words by segmenting and blending.

The older children teach the younger children to talk about the text and the illustrations and ask questions to see if the younger children understand what they are reading. This helps to develop everyone’s reading confidence!  At the end of a session one of the Year 6 librarians will finish with a story to the younger children.

Reading for Pleasure

We have reading corners in every classroom. We can choose books to read and we change the books regularly to take home. We also have a book swap box so that we can bring books from home to swap with our friends.

We strive to make reading fun and enjoyable for everyone through reading competitions and challenges. Please click on the picture above to view the range of reading challenges and competitions we have been taking part in.

Teachers as Readers

Each day there is a dedicated time for teachers to read to the pupils. We believe it is essential for teachers to act as role models and to inspire pupils to read and promote a love of reading. In the younger years this may involve sharing a picture book with the children, whilst in the older years a class novel may be shared over several weeks. Teachers select the highest quality texts, taking inspiration from Pie Corbett’s Story Spines and Page Turner recommendations as well as their own knowledge of the best children’s authors.

We enjoy using our reading skills in every lesson and our teachers provide opportunities for us to do so in all subjects.  In every classroom there is a book corner filled with books to support our curriculum for us to enjoy.

100 Recommended Reads

We published a list of 100 books for each phase which we believe each child should read. This will encourage pupils to read a wide breadth of genre types and genres which is essential for developing their reading skills including comprehension, inference, deduction, summarising and predictions.

Reading Skills

At Ratby we use the Literacy Shed Reading Vipers to develop the key skills. Below you can download further information on the VIPERS.

VIPERS is based on 6 key reading/comprehension skills:

  1. Vocabulary
  2. Inference
  3. Prediction
  4. Explanation
  5. Retrieval
  6. Sequence/Summarise