“If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it – Toni Morrison
“Reading is to the mind, what exercise is to the body” – Brian Tracy
Reading is central to a child’s understanding of the school curriculum and is of vital importance in life. Fluent readers can access a full range of life experiences and can enjoy an amazing breadth of genres and writers. Learning to read is the most important thing your child will learn at Hensingham Primary School.
At Hensingham Primary School, we aim to develop a love and appreciation of reading which will stay with children for life. We hope to achieve this through careful planning and teaching using up-to-date strategies. Listening to a child read is simply not enough; rather we use high quality reading materials and resources within English lessons to provide high quality learning opportunities.
Good reading is an essential life skill.
At Hensingham Primary School we use Read Write Inc Phonics (RWI) to give your child the best possible start with their literacy. We have put together a guide to how the RWI programme works together with some useful links.
Mrs Brotherhood is our Read Write Inc Lead Teacher, so if you have questions about RWI, contact school who can refer you to her. Please take the time to read the information as it will provide invaluable information as to how you can help and support your child in reading.
Read Write Inc (RWI) is a phonics complete literacy programme which helps all children learn to read fluently and at speed so they can focus on developing their skills in comprehension, vocabulary and spelling. The programme is designed for children aged 4-7. However, at Hensingham Primary School we begin the programme in Nursery and will continue teaching RWI to children beyond the age of 7 if they still need support in their reading.
RWI was developed by Ruth Miskin and more information on this can be found at
Once a child has mastered the mechanics of reading and can read independently, decoding, understanding and with fluency we continue to widen and strengthen their reading comprehension through the use of whole class reading.
Whole Class Reading
Whole class reading builds fluency, confidence, pace and enjoyment.
All classes from Year 1-6 access a daily whole class reading session predominately focused upon a novel study where they practise and embed the key reading content domain skills.
We regularly update our whole class reading texts to ensure that we have a range of modern, classic texts, significant authors as well as high quality literature from current authors.
Children access at least one non-fiction text per half term in their whole class reading sessions.
High quality teacher modelling of fluent reading and reading with expression ensure that children experience listening to a strong reader and develop expression and fluency in their own reading.
Each year group covers two ‘CET Texts’- these are year group specific texts that are covered across the whole of the trust.
Research shows that reading for pleasure is THE key indicator in raising attainment and a positive marker of pupils’ future success. All children take home a reading for pleasure text that they can share with an adult at home.
Writing equips children with communication and thinking skills.
Writing expresses who we are as people.
Writing makes our thinking and learning visible and permanent and it fosters our ability to explain and refine our ideas to others and ourselves.
Here at Hensingham Primary School we passionately believe in the teaching of high quality writing opportunities, hooking children and allowing them to write for purpose and a range of audiences. We build on and refine skills across school and writing is celebrated. We begin our writing journey by exploring the reading phase, where we look at an example text and explore the features of the genre, before moving onto the gathering content phase, where we harvest vocabulary, ideas and features to use in our own writing.
Cross-curricular writing has an important place in our curriculum and is key to ensuring children can write for different purposes and audiences, building stamina and pace.
Our handwriting is taught using LetterJoin, a whole school handwriting programme and more information can be found using the link below. Handwriting is taught discretely, and as part of the English lesson, where appropriate.
Another element of writing, is spelling, and here at Hensingham Primary School we use Spelling Shed, a complete spelling programme designed to meet the needs of the 2014 National Curriculum in a manageable way. Spelling Shed teaches spelling in a ‘little-but-often’ structure which allows children to revisit and review, learn new strategies and apply.