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Reading is a core skill and opens up learning in other areas of the curriculum.  The reading skills which children learn are crucial in enabling children to succeed academically and in their adult lives. We want children to be capable and confident readers but also to hold a love and appreciation of books and reading. Reading enhances imagination, builds vocabulary and supports children in their development as writers.


At St Paul's, children are encouraged to choose and read books freely and independently, as well as enjoying books recommended and read by adults. Each class has a class library and children's views are sought on their current reading interests, popular themes and loved authors; class libraries are replenished based on children's requests and interests.


Our ‘Book Nook’ is a wonderfully special and calm environment where children can enjoy reading books during their morning play and lunch time. The ‘Book Nook’ is stocked with a number of high quality texts, bestsellers and classic reads for children to enjoy. In the summer term, children are invited to enjoy the 'Outdoor Book Nook' in our woodland area.


At St Paul's, we use a range of reading schemes to support the early teaching of reading, including:

Big Cat Collins

Oxford Reading Tree

Comics for Phonics

Rising Stars Reading Planet


Once a child has reached a level of confidence with their reading and is working at a good level of comprehension and understanding (usually at the level expected of an average Year 2 child), they can chose books which they would like to read at home.


A variety of reading material is provided for enjoyment and engagement, including:

Picture books

Short chapter books

Longer novels and chapter books

Non-fiction texts

Magazines, newspapers and comics



Reading comprehension is taught through our fortnightly English blocks as well as in a weekly ‘standalone’ session. In the English blocks, children practise one of our key skills; they learn to recognise question types and how to structure answers. These sessions are based on the class text or stimulus for writing and are part of the preparation for writing. Separate comprehension sessions each week are used to widen exposure to other texts such as non-fiction and poetry and recap previously taught skills, with particular focus on vocabulary, inference and retrieval. Throughout the school, we use the acronym VIPERS to teach the key skills for comprehension: vocabulary, inference, prediction, explanation, retrieval and summarise/sequence.


Specific programmes, intervention sessions and booster classes are also provided to target children with gaps in their learning and to extend higher attaining learners. Each year, to coincide with World Book Day we hold a reading week to celebrate our love for stories.