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The teaching of reading at Ryhope Junior School is a high priority for all staff in order to maximise every child’s potential, regardless of background. The ability to read is fundamental to many aspects of life is central to understanding and accessing other areas of the curriculum to ultimately make progress.

It is our intent to:

  • Develop fluent, confident and independent readers through a structured focus on word, sentence and text level knowledge.
  • Encourage children to become enthusiastic and reflective readers by exposing them to a range of high-quality texts.
  • Give children the confidence to read aloud with expression and with clarity.
  • Develop and extend the children’s vocabulary through shared reading.
  • Instil a love of reading for each and every child in our care.




Reading plays a vital role in the development and education of your child. At Ryhope Junior School, we ensure that pupils have lots of opportunities to read in lots of different contexts. We have developed a text-rich curriculum which is progressive and promotes a love of reading.

English and Reading lessons

Our curriculum has been designed around a bespoke reading list with age-appropriate texts which both scaffold quality learning and a love of reading. English lessons are centred around one or two books for the term and forms the focus of the children's writing. Where appropriate, links are made between our class novels and foundation subjects.

Here is our bespoke reading list:

In addition to our daily, one hour English lesson, we also deliver four, thirty-minute reading lessons which allow the children to explore a range of both fiction and non-fiction texts. These sessions allow our children to be exposed to a broader range of texts and develop the necessary skills in order to become a fluent and confident reader.  They also expose the children to a range of text types which will inform later writing objectives.


Reading across the curriculum

Reading at Ryhope Junior School is not limited to English lessons and Reading lessons. We also use a variety of texts across other areas of the curriculum too through both online and fiction/ non-fiction texts. Reading is integral to all areas of learning and staff understand that high-quality, age-appropriate texts can be used to supplement learning in foundation subjects. Children are encouraged to apply their reading to their new learning in order to demonstrate that they ‘know more and remember more.’


Dedicated reading time

At Ryhope Junior School, we are strong advocates for reading for enjoyment as often as you can. For this reason, in addition to discrete teaching of phonics and comprehension, children are given 15 minutes at the beginning of the day to dedicate to independent reading. During this time, their teacher may read with them, or they may read to themselves. This allows the child to get lost in their book! During reading time, children are able to quiz, change their book or read in the reading corner.


Story time

Another way in which Ryhope Junior School hope to encourage and nurture the love of reading is through engaging class texts at the end of the school day. All teachers read to their children for twenty minutes before home time. This is done either in the classroom or in the library. Story time gives the children another opportunity to get lost in a book that they may not have been able to access independently. It is also a fantastic opportunity for children to develop their listening skills and vocabulary.  These texts are then displayed in the classroom for children to read independently.


Outdoor Reading Area

Our allocated Reading Area in our yard has been developed to allow children to read for pleasure during playtime. Each year group has been provided with a range of texts which include stories, poetry, magazines, children’s journals etc.


Half-termly Poetry Weeks

At Ryhope Junior School, each class looks forward to Poetry Week which happens every half term. Some Poetry Weeks have a whole-school theme and others do not. At the end of each Poetry Week, there is a whole school performance where the children are given the opportunity to share their poem. These weeks allow the children to practice reading out loud and develop their oracy skills.

Dyslexia Gold is a computer-based reading intervention which our school have adopted. Children who require additional reading practice access this programme four times a week for thirty minutes in order to develop their fluency, skill of tracking their reading and boost their confidence.


Home Reading

Here at Ryhope Junior School, we understand the importance of encouraging regular reading for pleasure. All children complete a baseline assessment using Star Reader at the beginning of the academic year. They are then assessed again at every half term interval in order to track progress regularly and identify where intervention may be needed. The children’s scores then give an indication of which book level they need to be on. The children are given the autonomy to select their own reading book provided that it is on their correct level. The children are explicitly taught how one may choose and select a book e.g. reading the blurb, taking recommendations from peers etc.

All children are given a Reading Record in September. It is vitally important that the children bring these in every day. When reading at home, an adult will comment in the child’s reading record so that staff are aware that the child has read at home and of any issues which need addressing in class.


Closing the gap

Those children who are in the bottom 20% will have additional reading opportunities:  they are read with at least once a week on a 1:1 basis; they may access reading interventions which vary according to their year group; attend adult-lead phonics lessons to address gaps and all children are exposed to quality first teaching with the aim for them to make rapid progress in their reading ability and fluency. This also aims to give children a confidence boost and assist staff in identify issues or misconceptions within children’s reading.


Accelerated Reader

Accelerated Reader is a computer-based programme which monitors reading practice and progress for every child. All children complete their baseline Star Reader assessment in order to get an initial book level. They then are given the opportunity to go and choose a book which is on their level. When they finish their home reading book, they will complete an Accelerated Reader quiz. The quiz is designed to assess their understanding of what they have read. The children are given a percentage at the end of the quiz which will then be recorded in their Reading Record. Percentages which are above 80% are highlighted in green. Anything below 80% is highlighted in yellow. The teacher will then tell them which level they need to choose from next.

As an incentive, children are given a raffle ticket for every 100% they get which is drawn at the end of every half term. If a child’s name is pulled out of the raffle bag, they will receive a reading prize e.g a book or a bookmark.



We are lucky enough at Ryhope Junior School to have a space dedicated for our library. The room has been developed to ‘WOW’ children as they walk in. With fantastic illustrations of familiar book characters on the wall and cosy corners to delve into a good book, the children look forward to their allocated slot for story time.

Year 6 children run story time every Friday in the library when children are invited to listen to a short story. This takes place at 12:45 and the book to be read is promoted leading up to the story time session.  The Year 6 reader is encouraged to make the book choices and practise at home and with peers in preparation for their reading session.  This helps boost the Year 6 child’s confidence by encouraging them to read with prosody and thus with confidence.  They are encouraged to engage the audience by asking questions, imitating the teacher’s reading behaviour and thus maintaining the children’s engagement.


Reading Ambassadors

Each class has two Reading Ambassadors who are democratically voted for and are responsible for sharing any key messages which come from our English Lead. They attend half-termly meetings and are given a range of responsibilities. Some of these include reading with peers and ensuring the book shelves are replenished and correctly organised.



  • Pupils enjoy reading texts across a range of genres.
  • Pupils share a love for reading.
  • Pupils enjoy reading regularly, for information and for enjoyment.
  • Pupils discuss books with excitement and interest.
  • Parents and carers will have a good understanding of how they can support pupils’ reading development at home.
  • 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 averages.
  • There will be no significant gaps in the progress of different groups of pupils (e.g. disadvantaged vs non-disadvantaged).


Reading at Ryhope Junior School