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Home Learning


The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go – Dr. Seuss

Curriculum Intent

At John Burns Primary School, our intent is to:

  • Recognise that reading is the core skill to everything that children do. It is integral to our school curriculum and a fundamental life skill that impacts on the acquisition of knowledge.
  • Develop positive attitudes towards reading so that it is a pleasurable and meaningful activity.
  • Develop fluent, independent and reflective readers who are confident to talk about books and authors.
  • Adopt the principles and recommendations set out The Reading Framework (2022)
  • Equip pupils with not only the minimum statutory requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage/the reading National Curriculum but to prepare them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life.

Curriculum Implementation

At John Burns Primary School:

  • Phonics is the main approach to teaching early word reading. Teachers use the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised programme which is a DfE approved systematic synthetic phonics programme.
  • In Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 (autumn term only for main class), there is a daily discrete phonics session (lasting up to 30 minutes). Sessions are led by teachers and teaching assistants.
  • Following an initial assessment, sequences of phonics sessions follow the organisation and order of sounds in the programme.
  • Pupils in Reception are taught to read and spell words using Phase 2 and 3 GPCs, and words with adjacent consonants (Phase 4) with fluency and accuracy.
  • Pupils in Year 1 review Phases 3 and 4 and are taught to read and spell words using Phase 5 GPCs with fluency and accuracy.
  • Rapid Catch-up resources are used to teach selected pupils in Year 2.
  • During sessions, all children are expected to participate by listening and responding, and by practising and applying what they are learning (principle taken from The Reading Framework 2022).
  • Additional year group objectives will be taught through English (Year 1) or Literacy (Reception) sessions.
  • Texts to develop additional reading skills are well-chosen to ensure they link to wider curriculum themes and develop children’s comprehension skills.
  • Home reading books are closely aligned to the order that sounds are taught in the programme to ensure children are taking home fully decodable books to practise and develop word reading fluency once they have learnt specific sounds.
  • Children are expected and encouraged to read at home every day. Reading diaries log reading activity, including pages read.   
  • Effective CPD is available to staff to ensure high levels of confidence and knowledge are maintained.
  • To support the teaching of early word reading and comprehension teachers access a range of resources (including Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised planning).
  • Adaptive teaching, through children being assessed and split into smaller groups (within their class) to learn a sound of the week, ensures the pace of learning new sounds is matched to ability.
  • Assessment is informed by observations during phonics sessions, verbal feedback and half termly phonic and screening assessments.
  • Summative judgements (Working Towards/Working At/Working Above age-related Expectations) are recorded each term, discussed at pupil progress meetings and in end of year reports for all KS1 pupils.
  • At the end of KS1 pupils will sit Reading SATs papers. These results will be used to validate teacher-assessment judgement in Reading (Working Towards/Working At/Working Above age-related Expectations)
  • At the end of Reception, a teacher-assessed judgement of expected or emerging is made for the word reading ELG and for the comprehension ELG and reported to parents.
  • A Year 1 Phonics Screening Check is administered in June. This determines whether or not children are able to decode and use phonic knowledge to an age appropriate standard.
  • A love of reading is promoted through: vibrant and inviting book corners in classrooms, staff sharing a story with the class at the end of each day and through regular library slots.
  • Whole school themed events raise the profile, as well as promote a love of reading, e.g. National Poetry Day and World Book Day.
  • Effective use of author visits (in-person and virtual) are planned, to enrich and enhance learning experiences and to develop children’s cultural capital in reading.

Curriculum Impact

At John Burns Primary School, our pupils will:

  • Become confident, fluent readers and increasingly accurate spellers.
  • The ability to decode and work out unfamiliar words in any new texts they encounter even when they have come to the end of the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised programme.
  • A richer vocabulary which will enable them to raise the standard and quality of their spoken and written vocabulary.
  • High aspirations, which will see them through to further study, work and a successful adult life.