We are all readers
our classes are named after a children's author. We start off the year becoming familiar with the class author and reading one of the books. Children become immersed in the text through lots of discussion, drama, art and writing activities. Across the school, work carried out on the texts and authors is showcased on displays, as we look to put a love of reading into everything we do.
Reading in school
Every term each year group’s guided reading lessons will be based around a particular whole class text. They will enjoy reading the book together with lots of discussion around what they are reading. A reciprocal reading approach will be followed and they will make predictions about what will happen next, summarise what they have read, clarify the meaning of words and phrases and pose questions that they would want answered by continuing to read the book. They look in detail at different characters and infer how a character is feeling from what they say and what they do.
As well as reading these texts children learn reading skills through looking at a variety of non-fiction texts. These may relate to the class reader or often relate to Topic or Science work. As children move through Key Stage 2 we expect them to articulate the reading skill they are using to answer a question.
As well as guided reading lessons, children have many opportunities to read throughout the school day and also read with a teacher or a teaching assistant regularly during the week.
Reading at home
Each child is given a reading record that goes home with them each night. Ideally, we would like to see that children are reading with somebody else, a parent, a grandparent and older brother or sister. When they read parents should make a note in the reading record showing how many pages they have read and are encouraged to write a comment. Class teachers will reward children in their classes for the efforts they put into reading outside of school.
Some children, especially in the upper school, may prefer to read on their own, so they are able to record the pages that they have read. We would expect children to talk to their parents about what they have read, what they are enjoying about it or any words they have found confusing.
Our aim is to build up the stamina for reading, as children move through the school they will become confident reading a larger amount of text.
We continue to use Accelerated Reader to monitor what children are reading at home and to ensure they are understanding what they are reading. Children are set a target at the beginning of the half term. Reading every night at home will help them to reach their targets.
As an incentive those children who meet their target twice in a term are rewarded with a book provided by the PTFA. Children will have opportunities to take quizzes in school. The ICT suite is open first thing in the morning for children to take a quiz.
We have also given more time to reading on the curriculum and children share a range of books in class with their teachers.
Scholastic Book Fairs
We have two book fairs booked in for this year. Just like in the Spring term last year these will coincide with Parent’s Evenings. Parents are encouraged to take their children along to the book fair and browse and purchase the books on offer. A percentage of the money raised is given to the school. Last year we were able to spend the commission on Whole Class Reading texts.
World Book Day - Thursday 5th March 2020
Each year we celebrate World Book Day. We encourage children to dress up as a book character. Special reading events take place across the day and children with the most impressive costumes (homemade are the best, rather than spending lots of money on shop bought outfits)
Pyjamarama Day - Date to be confirmed.
Last year children and many staff enjoyed another fabulous day with a reading focus and were able to come to school in their Pjs. We will be sure to do this again in the summer term.
Book and a bagel mornings
As we continue to promote reading, we will occasionally have special mornings or events for children and staff to share books that they have enjoyed.
At St Michael’s Academy we are very proud of our Reading Rangers who each year work hard to improve their understanding of reading. Children have enjoyed reading in different settings such as Pen Mill Academy and Nursery and have concentrated on their story telling using intonation and questioning to engage younger children. Last year a group of children were lucky enough to go to the Octagon Theatre and practise reading playscripts standing on the stage.
On Monday 4th November the Reading Rangers visited The Octagon Theatre and listened to two authors talking about the most recent children's book that they have written. Year 3/4 children were lucky enough to listen to Clare Balding, the famous Sports Broadcaster, talk about her book The Racehorse Who Learned To Dance. She also shared some of her life experience and talked about her love of animals and different sports particular horse riding, rugby and tennis and we also learned about the 2020 Olympics in Japan and the new sports that will be introduced. Did you know that skateboarding, surfing, karate, rock climbing and baseball are all new events that will be added? Some of our children were brave enough to stand up and talk in front of a packed theatre. Hafeez and Mason in Year 3 stood up and confidently talked about their best friends and Melissa and Lily asked questions to find out who were Clare Balding's favourite authors were - Anna Sewel, Roald Dahl and Michael Morpurgo and her favourite book as a child was Black Beauty. Her favourite sport is Eventing.
The Year 5/ 6 children went to see Emma Carroll who talked about her book The Somerset Tsunami a book the Reading Rangers have already started reading. She was very interesting and not only did we learn about her inspirations as a reader and writer but we also learned some history, geography and science. Again children from St Michaels' were very keen to stand up and ask the author questions. Chloe Smith asked her why she wrote about The Somerset Tsunami and Jayden asked which book she was most proud of. Lily asked her how she thought of the main character in the book - Fortune Sharpe.