At Greenbank Primary School, we believe that developing a love of reading is the key to the success of our children. We actively encourage all children to read a wide variety of materials for pleasure and our aim is for our pupils become readers for life. This enjoyment of reading is shared by all our staff, and reading opportunities are promoted through all curriculum subjects. In 2016, we were awarded the Liverpool Gold Reading Quality Mark in recognition of our hard work to promote reading for pleasure. We are fortunate to have 2 fantastic, well-stocked school libraries-maintained by our dedicated team of Pupil Librarians- alongside inspiring reading areas in our classrooms, and on the playground, which our children love to explore.
In addition to the daily literacy lesson, children in Key Stage Two also develop their reading accuracy and comprehension skills in regular reading lessons. These lessons allow children to gain confidence in using the language and strategies required for talking about and investigating a wide range of texts, and apply learned skills in a variety of activities. In our reading lessons, we use reading VIPERS to help pupils understand what a good reader looks like, and how to approach answering reading questions. VIPERS is an acronym which stands for Vocabulary, Infer, Predict, Explain, Retrieve, and Sequence or Summarise.
The following pages explain how this concept works and gives you ideas for how each type of question might look for pupils.
Our children are encouraged to read in as many situations as possible. Reading takes place in all areas of the curriculum, using books and electronic devices. Children also have access to a wide range of interventions, including Reading Recovery, Lexia and Reciprocal Reading.
What is Reading Recovery?
Reading Recovery is a literacy programme designed for children aged around six who are having difficulties with reading and writing. It enables them to reach age-expected levels within 20 weeks. We are very fortunate at Greenbank to have two trained Reading Recovery teachers. It involves a short series of daily one-to-one lessons for 30 minutes with a specially trained teacher. Reading Recovery is different for every child, starting from what the child knows and what he/she needs to learn next. The focus of each lesson is to comprehend messages in reading and construct messages in writing, learning how to use letter and word detail fluently without losing focus on meaning and comprehension.
Research shows that Reading Recovery achieves good results that are swift and long lasting.It is recognised as an example of good practice in literacy education by the European Literacy Policy Network (ELINET), the Institute for Effective Education (IEE), and What Works Clearinghouse.
Fast letter sorting and word work at the board
Composing and writing stories
Reordering their written story
What does a typical Reading Recovery lesson look like?
- The first ten minutes consist of familiar reading to develop fluency and build confidence, followed by a short reading assessment to analyse strategies used on a text. Next, the child completes learning at the board using magnetic letters.
- From a natural conversation, the child will compose, orally rehearse and write their story. They will then go on to reassemble a cut up version of their story.
- A new book is introduced to the child and they will read it for the first time.
What do Greenbank children say about Reading Recovery?
“When I first started Reading Recovery I was confused, but then I got better and better. Now I enjoy reading. I read in the library – football magazines and Liverpool Football Club programmes. I am happier and proud that I can do this.”
“It was fun. We got to write things. When I started I was on red level but I got more levels up and now I’m on lime. I’m amazed! I can read chapter books.”
“After Reading Recovery I found reading and writing a lot more fun. It helped me to realise that I could do it. Before, I used to take books home but I didn’t read them. I was scared to fail and I’d get cross with myself. I could show my parents that I had progressed and that I was working. Now I read a lot. I’m a school librarian, a member of Allerton Library and recently started a book club with my friends.”
“I liked all the stories. Some were fiction and some were non-fiction, but I could read them and it made me feel good. I got to write stories too. It was brilliant to get my handwriting neat and it helped my focus.”
“In the lessons I liked the board work and the writing. I read more now and I read at home. Some books are funny and I can read unicorn books. It’s helped me with my class homework, like spellings.”
“We had to chunk it up or skip it or think about what made sense. When the teacher wasn’t there I was still able to carry on because I knew what to do when I was stuck.”