Reading and Phonics

The Intent of our Reading Curriculum

At J H Godwin, our reading curriculum is designed to give our children the necessary knowledge, skills and understanding to read fluently and  develop a deep comprehension of what they have read. Our reading curriculum also includes a systematic, focused synthetic phonics programme  (Read Write Inc.) that develops decoding skills.

We build a curriculum that  enables all children to continue their learning and their lives unhindered by reading difficulties.  We inspire children to read beyond schooling and aspire to careers where these skills of fluency and comprehension can be utilised fully.

Language skills are a critical factor in social disadvantage and so we prioritise closing the gap between the speech, language and communication development of any children who are behind, and their peers. Alongside a very rigorous and sequential approach to developing speaking and listening and vocabulary acquisition, we also provide specialist individual speech and language therapy.

We recognise that being able to read well is vital for a child’s prospects at school and in life. We are determined to teach every child to read regardless of social and economic circumstances, ethnicity, language spoken at home, and special educational needs or disabilities.

We immerse all of our pupils in the wonders of quality, vocabulary-rich texts to instil a love for reading; to inspire and lead into writing in a variety of styles and forms, showing awareness of audience and purpose; and to act as a vehicle for learning across the wider curriculum.  Our ‘Read to Write’ units are carefully planned and structured to ensure that learning is continuous and that all pupils make good progress with the development of their learning. By taking a text-based approach, we give the children the chance to develop culturally, emotionally, socially and spiritually, enabling them to both acquire knowledge and build on what they already know. We foster an interest in words and their meaning to develop our children’s vocabulary in both spoken and written form.

Reading Implementation

At J H Godwin, we take a text based approach to teaching writing, linking reading and writing. Children will study their class book, along with other linked texts, in reading sessions, building on and inspiring writing. All of our reading teaching and learning follows the National Curriculum.

We believe that ‘reading for pleasure’ is not an ‘add-on’ – it is the context in which all reading takes place. We take into account children’s interests when choosing material that has the capacity to appeal to them, while also considering the quality of language and illustration and the variety of authors and genres. For children who are learning the phonics phonemes and graphemes, we ensure that they access books that are directly linked to their phonics progress. We celebrate and reward children who read five or more times per week.

For the 'Read to Write' English units, inspiring and engaging texts are chosen for the potential they offer and are influenced by a number of aspects such as subject, purpose, historical, social or cultural context.  Visual features and vocabulary are also a primary factor. We also provide ambitious model texts linked to these books that develop reading comprehension and provide greater depth opportunities. 

Aside from the English texts, class teachers also read aloud to the children regularly. Children learn about the author and other books they have written.

Word AwareImage result for word aware

Using our school-wide approach 'Word Aware', many learning sessions involve vocabulary exploration to unlock meaning.  These explorations involve games, research, songs, actions and rhymes to help consolodate new words. These are then applied into all areas of the curriculum.

Guided and Shared Reading

All classes explore books and develop reading skills through shared and guided reading experiences. The texts chosen are linked to developing specific reading fluency and comprehension skills.  

In addition to this, children will have further opportunity to enjoy and share books. This may be through shared reading; answering mixed reading skills questions; listening to audio books; visiting the library; or exploring non-fiction books. 

Children are supported through:

  • pre-reading the text

  • pre-teaching key vocabulary

  • guided groups during tasks

  • mixed ability pairings and peer-tutoring

  • intervention around a certain skill

  • de-coding taught in addition to whole class session

Children are stretched through:

  • less scaffold e.g. rather than multi-choice, children have to find the answer themselves

  • higher order questioning 

  • texts chosen for challenge and breadth


At JH Godwin, all children in EYFS and KS1 take part in high quality, daily READ WRITE INC. phonics sessions. These are fun sessions involving lots of speaking, listening and games where the emphasis is on children’s participation. They learn to use their phonic knowledge for reading, writing and independent play. From a very early stage, children develop an awareness of different sounds in spoken language. They develop an understanding that spoken words are made up of different sounds (phonemes) and they learn to match these phonemes to letters (graphemes). Phonics is about children knowing how letters link to sounds (graphemes to phonemes), e.g. c as in ‘cat’, ll as in ‘fell’, ee as in ‘sheep’. Children use this phonics knowledge when they are reading and writing. This system has been shown to be a quicker and more efficient way for children to learn to read the words on a page fluently and accurately. This also helps them greatly with their spelling

A secure understanding of synthetic phonics is fundamental in the development of reading. We believe that the teaching of phonics should be adapted to the needs of the learners and encompass physical, musical and game-based learning as well as opportunities to practise and apply. 

We use Read Write Inc for the teaching of phonics and we track the phonics skills rigorously and ensure that reading experiences and books reflect their phonics stage. 

All Year One children undertake a statutory phonics screening test each year in June. For more information or assistance on this please visit Team 1's page or click here.

For more information of Read Write Inc. and how we implement it at JH Godwin, please click here



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Contact the School

J H Godwin Primary School

Melbourne Road
Headteacher: Mrs L Cartledge

Main Contact: If you would like to contact someone at school for help with anything please ring and speak to Mrs S Jefferson or Mrs K Bickerton in the office

Tel: 01244 259 666

SEN Contact: Mrs E Cornish SENDCO - via

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