How we teach reading at The Avenue


Phonics at The Avenue is taught throughout Foundation Stage and into Key Stage 1. We follow the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised programme, which is designed to help teachers and practitioners teach children what sounds different letters make and how to blend and segment them for reading and spelling. Daily, systematic phonics lessons take place in Reception and Year 1, allowing the children to work through the different phases, learning and developing their phonics sounds and knowledge to help them read with greater fluency.

We use an online tracking system called Phonics Tracker to carefully track children’s progress across the year. If there are any children who need additional support in securing sounds, interventions are carefully planned and monitored to help them catch up quickly.

Once children can blend sounds together to read words, they practise reading using fully decodable books that match the phonics that they have been taught. As their fluency develops, they start to believe they can read and this does wonders for their confidence!

In Year 2, once our children are secure in their phonic knowledge and are reading more fluently, the teaching focus shifts to spelling patterns and rules. 


Taking books home:

All children across the school are supported in accessing appropriate texts that are well matched to their individual reading ability. Our early readers in Reception and Year 1, take home ‘fully decodable’ books to practise the sounds and ‘tricky’ words they have been taught in their phonics lessons.  We have a range of fully decodable books from different schemes; including Oxford, Dandelion, Collins Big Cat Phonics and Rigby Star.


From Year 2 to Year 6, our more fluent readers use Accelerated Reader to assess and match ‘real’ books to their individual reading level. The children select books within their assessed range, then read and quiz electronically to check their understanding of what they have read. We encourage children to read daily at home in addition to the 20-30 minutes of Accelerated Reader time that we allocate within the school day. We value reading highly and their progress is carefully monitored and celebrated. Parents can use secure login details to access their child’s reading progress by clicking here: Accelerated Reader Scheme

They will be able to see what books their child has read and how they did on the follow up comprehension quizzes. Parents will also be given suggestions on what their child could read next based on their interests and ability. 

Please click here to see our guide: How parents can help with reading at home
Reading in the Early Years:

In Nursery, we encourage and develop a love of reading through daily story time, use of rhymes and by providing children with opportunities to share stories and other texts with their peers and adults through continuous provision.


In Reception, we continue to build a love of words and reading through exposure to good quality literature, reading opportunities in continuous provision, high quality phonics and small group / 1 to 1 reading sessions. Each child is heard to read individually in school three times a week, where possible, by their teacher and/or teaching assistant.

Reading in Key Stage 1:

In Year 1 and 2, we build on the skills and love of language taught in Early Years.  The children take part in class and guided group reading lessons, where they are exposed to a range of language rich texts and can develop their knowledge, understanding and thinking through discussion and thoughtful teacher questioning. Each child is heard to read individually in school twice a week, where possible, by their teacher and/or teaching assistant.

Reading in Key Stage 2:

In Key Stage 2, we continue to build on the children’s vocabulary and early reading success through whole class reading lessons. We use exciting and engaging texts that are matched to the age-related expectations for each class. The teacher works with the whole class and groups of children to develop their decoding, retrieval, inference and deduction skills to help them understand what they are reading at a deeper level. 

Reading in Resource Base:

In our Resource Base, the adults individualise the children’s reading programme depending on their ability. Children read with an adult daily. They practice their comprehension, retrieval, inference, deduction and decoding skills in small group sessions, with the use of individualised 2 minute reading challenges/ topic texts and quality texts. In addition to this, children who are unable to use phonics to decode are supported with a programme such as Toe by Toe to aid sight reading. Children have the opportunity daily to free read and discuss texts with their peers and read to each other.

Monitoring progress in reading:

We check children’s reading and comprehension skills regularly so we can ensure they are supported and challenged in the right way. This information is used to help teachers plan learning that will meet the needs of all children, helping them make the best possible progress. If children need additional support in reading, this support is provided through individualised intervention and tracked by our SENDCo. 

Reading for Pleasure:

All children are read to each day by their class teacher. Quality texts are carefully selected from the best current and classic authors so the children will come to know and love a wide repertoire of stories, poetry and information books as they progress through the school. 

Links to useful reading lists by year group:

Pie Corbett’s reading spine

Brilliant Book Lists by Year Group 

 At The Avenue, we don’t just want our children to learn to read. We want them to LOVE reading and develop the desire to want to read for themselves. We encourage this by:

  • Having a wide range of quality reading books in our school and class libraries.
  • Providing reading time and comfortable places for children to read throughout the day. 
  • All staff demonstrating their own love of reading and by teachers selecting and recommending quality texts that the children will love.
  • Encouraging all children from Reception to Year 6 choose a reading book to take home and this reading book is changed weekly. 
  • Giving opportunities for the children to apply their reading skills across the curriculum.
  • Using ‘Reading Buddies’, in which children mix with other children from different year groups and share a book together.
  • Regularly celebrating reading progress.
  • Planning annual author visits and workshops to inspire the children.
  • Celebrating World Book Day.
  • Promoting books through displays.
  • Involving children in the selection of new books purchased for both Accelerated Reader and our libraries.

By the time children leave The Avenue, they are competent readers who can recommend books to their peers, have a thirst for reading a range of genres, including poetry, and participate in quality discussions about books.