At St Margaret Ward we aspire to create a school of passionate readers. We plan many activities and events throughout the year to promote reading and to encourage children to read as often as they can. We have invested in a wonderful school library and many new, engaging books to develop a love of reading in all our pupils.

Early Years and Key Stage 1

Guided reading is a fundamental part of teaching specific reading skills in early reading. Each child will participate in a guided reading session with their class teacher at least once a week. The cycle of guided reading also includes a pre-read session where the children will be exposed to new vocabulary and graphemes and a follow-up session where the children will re-read the text and answer comprehension questions about what they have read.

The guided reading books are all decodable and follow the progression within the Rocket Phonics scheme in order to reinforce the phonemes being taught within phonics sessions.

The main home reading scheme used for early reading is Reading Planet but this is subsidised with a range of other decodable texts to allow children to be exposed to a variety of authors, styles and content.

In Nursery, during the Spring and Summer term children who are ready will be given a book with no words or first words. These books are used to develop the children’s love for books and teach them to handle and use books correctly. They also allow discussion of the pictures which is the start of comprehension skills.

All books used for home reading are fully decodable to ensure a phonics first approach to reading.

Key Stage 2

The children make the transition to whole class reading. Whole class reading is a fundamental part of teaching specific reading skills in KS2. It is timetabled daily to ensure every child will read challenging and engaging texts regularly.

During whole class reading, the children will read age appropriate texts that they can access but will also challenge them. Every child has their own copy of the text and KS2 teachers use a range of high-quality novels for the children to study. In addition the children also read extracts from a range of non-fiction texts, poetry and plays.

Our main range of KS2 home reading books follow the Reading Planet scheme, ensuring a smooth transition from KS1 to KS2. Children are expected to read between Gold and Free Reading during their time in KS2.

Reading Spines

In order to ensure all our pupils are exposed to a range of quality texts from the first days of the Early Years until they leave at the end of Year 6, we have also created a personalised Reading Spine.

Our reading spine is designed using books – written by inspirational authors – which we value and want the children to have read by the time they leave primary education. The texts are purposefully selected to take the reader on a journey, from sharing picture books, to sharing a range of chapter books that gradually expose the reader to beautifully crafted storylines with evermore intriguing and challenging themes.

Some books also fit with the year group’s History, Geography and Science topics. Other books help support PSHE across the school. Time, research and effort has been taken to ensure a huge range of classic and traditional books are read to the children alongside new and modern stories. We have tried to ensure all our pupils are represented within these books to allow them to become fully immersed in the stories and with the characters.

Research shows that sharing quality narratives, which the children would not necessarily choose to read for themselves, develops not only a love of reading but improves vocabulary development and language skills, develops imagination and empathy, and enables children to learn about people, places and events outside of their own experience. In turn, this promotes achievement in all writing genres across the curriculum.

Our aim is to ensure all children have a knowledge of key books and authors by the time they leave St. Margaret Ward and this will hopefully set them on their journey to secondary school.




Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4

Year 5

Year 6