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Long Row Primary School

Inspire, Respect, Belong


At Long Row Primary School, we strive for excellence in English achievement throughout the school. We believe that language and English is fundamental to the overall development of the child and their access to the curriculum in all its aspects.

This policy describes our practice in the teaching of English: reading, writing, phonics, spelling, grammar, punctuation and oracy. It is defined by current national guidance on best practice, in-service training, staff discussion and professional judgement.

Our priority is to create fluent readers and writers with all the skills and knowledge they need to be confidently literate in life.

We want all children to leave Long Row Primary School with a love of reading and books, ensuring they are life-long readers. We recognise that reading will improve their vocabulary, inspire them creatively and improve their ability to understand the world around them.


Aims of our English Curriculum:

  • To provide a language rich environment that promotes a culture of reading and writing.
  • Learn to develop a range of independent strategies to take responsibility for their own learning.
  • To develop a love of books and high-quality literature that will support their learning across the curriculum, enriching their lives.
  • To explicitly teach reading skills throughout the school that continually develop children’s understanding and enjoyment of texts.
  • To teach children the craft of writing in order to develop the confidence and skills to write well for a range of purposes and audiences. To write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences.
  • To teach the basics – spelling, grammar, handwriting and punctuation – well so children have all the necessary tools.
  • To develop their ever-growing vocabulary, through an interest in words and their meanings.
  • Express opinions, articulate feelings and formulate appropriate responses to increasingly complex questions and instructions.

Phonics and Reading

At Long Row, our priority is both the teaching of reading skills and the enjoyment of literature, enabling children to become lifelong, confident readers. As children begin to read, we focus on decoding, primarily through phonics. We aim for children to build fluency and understanding, along with confidence. As children progress, comprehension skills become our main area of focus and questioning looks at skills such as re-telling, vocabulary, inference and prediction, as well as summarising. We aim to generate enthusiasm in reading by sharing authentic texts that are interesting.

Reading at home is encouraged, ideally with adult support.


Reading in the EYFS and KS 1:

At Long Row, we currently teach phonics using Letters & Sounds with Phonics Play as a supplementary resource. We follow a rigorous, systematic approach of revisit, teach, practise, apply and assess to our daily phonics teaching sessions. As a school we have a clear progression from nursery to year one. Children in year two gradually begin their transition to our spelling programme which is taught using the No Nonsense Spelling approach. We carefully tailor this approach to meet the needs of our children. Daily spelling sessions use the same rigorous, systematic approach used in reception and year one.

Children read decodable reading books which are carefully matched to their phonics capabilities. These books also consist of some non-decodable words, sometimes known as tricky words. These words are also carefully matched to the correct phonic phases and will have been explicitly taught during phonic teaching sessions. Children may read either individually with a teacher or in a small group guided reading session, also delivered by a teacher.

Our intent is for every child to read with confidence, fluency and success.


However, in line with recent DfE recommendations we are in the process of switching to a new phonics provider. Our new provider will be Supersonic Phonic Friends, which is  created by Phonics' expert Anna Lucas. The programme is fully DfE accredited and provides a systematic, synthetic phonic approach ranging from the simple to the complex spellings of the alphabetic code. We feel this move will further improve our whole school approach to teaching phonics by continuing to develop our high-quality phonics teaching, ensuring our children continue to be successful, confident readers as well as being able to apply each skill taught to their own reading and writing.


Once all staff have completed our Supersonic Phonic Friends training we will begin to implement our new programme and aim to be successfully using the programme across school by September 2022.


Please click below if you would like to find out more about Supersonic Phonic Friends, and to meet the characters!!


Reading in KS2:

  • We know that reading comprehension is largely supported by the high-quality discussions with the teacher. Reading comprehension is developed through the sharing of ideas and listening to the understanding of others, which is why we choose to teach reading through the approach of Whole   shared reading.
  • Children access at least 4 sessions of whole class reading a week, that are approximately 45 minutes long. These follow the skills of VIPERS – vocabulary, inference, prediction, explanation, retrieval and summarising / sequencing.
  • In our whole class reading sessions, age appropriate texts are chosen that inspire the children as well as developing their understanding of the world around them. All teachers have a list of extracts that they may choose from for their year group, these are split into categories such as: diversity, culture, friendship, non-fiction etc. This ensures children read widely gaining knowledge and vocabulary.
  • Teachers are encouraged to ‘read aloud’ and share their thoughts as they read to model the skills of a good reader.
  • Children choose a book (of the appropriate stage) to take home and read. We have a selection of banded books available to all classes to cater for all reading needs and interests.
  • Children’s home-school diaries are checked on a weekly basis to monitor engagement with home reading. Where engagement is low, teachers will aim to discuss this with individual families to see where school can support further with advice.
  • Children who need further support attend 1:1 reading with the teaching assistant in the class at least three times a week. These children also read with the class teacher 1:1 at least once a week.
  • Opportunities for independent reading are provided to encourage children to develop a love of reading – children are encouraged to have a reading book on their desk at all times and we take the children to the class or local library weekly.
  • Class teachers read a book at the end of each day. In Autumn 1, Spring 1 and Summer 1, these texts are chosen for their link to writing. In Autumn 2, Spring 2 and Summer 2, teachers choose a text of their choice to share with the children. Reading aloud to children is an important element of our reading curriculum.
  • When children leave Key Stage 2, we expect them to read fluently and be able to express preferences and opinions about texts they want to read for pleasure having had access to a wide range of text types, genres and authors in order to make informed opinions about their favourites. We aim for children to learn more about the world in which they live through the knowledge they’ve gained from texts.
  • We have recently updated our poetry progression to ensure there is a breadth of poetry taught


How do we develop a love of reading at Long Row?

  • We read across the curriculum e.g. news articles
  • All class teachers are expected to read a class book at the end of the day
  • We have a book fair
  • We visit the local library
  • Parents are invited to school to share reading lessons or to stay and play in EYFS
  • Each class has a dedicated reading corner to promote reading.
  • School hold workshops with parents to support their knowledge of how school teaches reading.
  • ‘What staff are reading’ displays around the school promote reading
  • A reading newsletter is sent out half-termly to celebrate children’s reading alongside book recommendations and book reviews by children.