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Why read at home?


"Parents make the greatest difference to achievement through supporting their child's learning in their home rather than supporting activities in school."

(National Literacy Trust)


Regular reading at home leads to a child improving as a reader faster. However, we appreciate the challenge of juggling family life with home learning! We hope the following information, ideas and links will make it easier.


When to read?

Family life can be frantic and the list of jobs to be done can seem never ending! Often reading with your child is one job that gets pushed aside. But do not despair; reading can be done anytime, anywhere. Below are some ways, you can squeeze in some reading time:

  • siblings reading to each other- can they read a younger sibling's bedtime story?
  • your child can read to anyone- aunt, uncle, friend, neighbour, another pupil etc
  • you can read the road signs to each other, posters or adverts displayed on shop windows
  • Use sub-titles on the TV and turn the sound off (although you may not be very popular!)
  • your child can read the shopping list to you as you shop
  • your child can read the school letters to you that are sent home
  • can they read the note you've left them on the fridge?


How do I help my child to read?

  • Read with them little and often
  • Model a good reader- read newspapers, bedtimes stories, visit the library ENJOY READING!
  • Prompt children on a range of skills they can use to understand the text: looking for any picture clues, sounding out any unknown words, reading around the sentence to try and find the meaning of a word, predicting what they think will happen
  • Allow them to read books or comics they are interested in
  • Play some reading games with the children


Research shows that regular reading at home leads to a child making accelerated progress in reading; to promote this, we encourage children to participate in our home reading reward scheme, 'Read yourself around the World.' 


How does school help your child to read?

At Woodhouse West Primary School we use a structured reading scheme. The children follow the structured colour banded system from EYFS until they are fluent, confident readers. This is when they select books to read at their level with guidance from their teacher. Reading lessons take place daily, where the children focus on comprehension skills and discussing the texts.


Over the week the children engage with a variety of experiences to increase and develop their fluency and comprehension skills. The sessions are made up of comprehension sessions and a reading for pleasure session. Throughout the sessions children have the opportunity to read as a group or independently. During the comprehension sessions children are exposed to a range of poems, fiction and non-fiction extracts to develop a range of reading strategies in response to a variety of questions linked around the key skills of prediction, inference, retrieval, sequencing, summarising or vocabulary. The reading for pleasure session fosters and promotes a love and enthusiasm for reading such as time at the local library, paired reading sessions and reading in our immersive reading room.


What makes a good reader?

When we asked the children this question we were met with a variety of answers ranging from having the ability to sound out words to being able to read aloud clearly. At Woodhouse West, we want all our children to be fluent, accurate, have a sound understanding so they can learn from what they read but also enjoy reading.


What should my child read?

At the bottom of the page are links to recommended books that are age appropriate for your child to enjoy independently or as a family.



As soon as our children start in our Nursery they are exposed to listening and speaking opportunities which will form the foundations of learning to read and write. The more you talk with your child and encourage good listening and speaking skills the more likely they will flourish when asked to learn the sounds we use to read and write.


We are currently using 'Letters and Sounds' and ‘Phonics Play’ to teach phonic skills to our Early Years and Key Stage 1 children. To support with reading, our early reading books use a phonics based approach. Phonic patterns are used for spelling lists and are further developed through handwriting practice. In Key Stage 2, those children who require further phonic support take part in small booster groups delivered by our trained teaching assistants.


Here are the phonic steps we use in our school:


Please use the link below to be taken to our Phonics page where you can find more information and useful resources to use with your child at home. 



At Woodhouse West, the teaching of writing follows a sequence of immersion, WAGOLL analysis and deconstruction, contextualised grammar teaching (which regularly includes games and text-analysis where children are encouraged to justify their own and others’ grammatical choices and the effects on the reader), shared write, drafting, reviewing, editing and re-writing.


We teach children to write across a wide range of genres and our writing lessons are taught through a text-led curriculum, making use of authentic writing and contextualised grammar choices as well as strengthening links with our wider curriculum.




Spelling is taught in daily 20 minute sessions throughout the week, following spelling rules outlined in the National Curriculum. This is supplemented through practical and engaging activities. Children are given spelling lists to learn at home and these are assessed through a dictation style spelling task.

Assessment and Monitoring



Writing is assessed by teachers as outlined in the school’s marking and feedback policy and regular feedback is provided to the children about their writing. Independent writing is assessed after each piece is completed. Each half term, the children will complete an assessed write which will support teacher assessment. Throughout the year, we moderate both internally and externally to support our judgements.




Reading is assessed through benchmarking tests for reading and comprehension; reading attainment is regularly assessed through on-going formative and summative assessment and moderated termly against National Curriculum standards. Additionally, Raising Stars tests are used across the school on a half termly basis to track attainment and progress against the content domains outlined in the frameworks.