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Reading at Westgate


Our Reading Culture


At Westgate we value reading as an essential part of children’s learning. We believe that promoting the enjoyment of reading is of equal importance to teaching important reading skills. We promote reading for pleasure both in and out of school.  We celebrate and foster a love of reading by:

  • Class novels- ensuring the children hear an adult read to them and that these are progressive across the year
  • Reading clubs such as Fantastic Book Awards and the Brilliant Book Awards
  • Children have a reading for pleasure book alongside their ‘scheme’ or AR book
  • Reading Corners in every classroom featuring a range of age appropriate texts; both fiction and non-fiction as well as texts supporting the wider curriculum
  • Class libraries- where children have a say in what goes in there
  • Regular quiet reading time during each week to read for pleasure
  • ‘Reading Spines’ for each year group to ensure a wide variety of authors, text types and genres are offered. This is shown on each year group’s Progression Maps
  • Enrichment opportunities from external sources such as Virtual Author visits, visits from local library services, Premier League Reading Stars and celebration days such as World Book Day.
  • Regular reading events with parents to promote and celebrate reading
  • Reading news letter to parents sent out regularly
  • Opening our Westgate library to the whole school community as well as providing opportunities for children to visit during the school day
  • Displays and school environment promote reading for pleasure and encourage children to read a wide range of literature
  • Celebrating reading at home through the Reading Raffle and monthly award assemblies
  • Reading Worms (Key Stage One) and Reading Miles on Key Stage Two as motivational rewards to encourage reading at home.


The Explicit Teaching of Reading


At Westgate, we have developed 7 Reading Intentions:



We teach reading skills directly through Whole Class, targeted group sessions or 1-1 reading to develop automaticity, fluency and comprehension. The sessions are engaging and skilfully planned following a clear and consistent sequence and are supported by Lancashire’s Key Learning Indicators of Performance (KLIPs) and Learning and Progression skills (LAPs).  Throughout our reading curriculum, we create independent, ambitious readers with stamina. 


Whole Class Reading – Year  2, 3, 4, 5 & 6

At Westgate, we teach through Whole Class Reading sessions for the explicit direct teaching of reading. Using the KLIPS and LAPS, alongside our own developed RAVSIE superheroes, we plan, teach and assess the key reading domains.


We have developed reading spines which offer the children a rich and varied reading diet; a range of authors, genres, fiction and non-fiction and reading which supports the wider curriculum. There is a focus on key texts throughout the year which are age appropriate and have a clear progression. We teach three whole class reading lessons a week and have two lessons focusing on a class novel. During the lessons, we ensure teachers read TO the children and follow a clear fluency sequence as well as providing plentiful opportunities for children to read themselves enabling the practice of fluency and stamina so they become independent and motivated readers.  


We target and support our lowest 20% of readers through pre-reading the text ahead of the Whole Class Reading session. Within lessons, children are working with or alongside an adult to ensure they are accessing the learning and are supported through vocabulary exploration, modelling and re-visiting. The children also have access to printed or adapted copies of the text as well as on screen texts.



Reading Phase

As part of the reading phase for all of our English units, we provide ample opportunity for children to undertake further independent reading and explore engaging and challenging texts. Within lessons, children are again developing fluency and stamina and are directed to the key reading domains and skills they are focusing on such as retrieval, vocabulary and inference.

Home Reading

Home reading is very important and takes high priority at Westgate. Children have access to a wide range of different books and are expected to read at least three times a week.


In Reception and KS1, children’s home reading books are linked to the phonics lessons in school. Children will take home two books: one book is kept for two reads so children can build their reading fluency. In KS2, children’s home reading books are linked to their reading ability. There are also KS2 phonic books with a higher interest level for those children that are working on building their reading skills.  


In Reception & Key Stage One, each class has a book worm to encourage and reward reading at home; Key Stage Two have Reading Miles per class and rewards for the class with the most miles.

All children read to an adult in school. We train all our class based adults in school so the 1-1 read is of a consistent high quality, developing and consolidating skills and knowledge from the reading sessions across school. We prioritize the lower 20% to read more frequently to an adult, in particular the class teacher. This is monitored through class reading registers which are kept in every class. 



Catch Up to Keep Up

Our lowest 20% children, some SEND children and other children who may require additional support to make accelerated progress  and/or meet age related expectations or are carefully selected and targeted to support their reading. All children will read regularly with an adult, be read to by an adult and will have their home reading monitored closely.

Some children will receive additional reading intervention 3x weekly through the Rapid Reading program with a clear focus on identifying gaps in knowledge through targeted intervention. These intervention groups will be monitored and assessed regularly to ensure they are having the desired impact.

Parental Support and Engagement

At the start of each academic year, all year groups deliver a Reading Workshop for parents where we explore our reading culture; the teaching of reading, reading for pleasure and also the reading expectations at home.