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Hollymount Primary School

Reading and Phonics

The new draft National Curriculum for English states that “reading widely and often opens up a treasure-house of wonder and joy for curious minds.”


At Hollymount, we know that inspiring a love of literacy in our pupils so they fall in love with reading for life is one of the best ways to hook children into reading and writing.  Children from Reception to Year 6 are exposed to quality children’s literature and creative teaching approaches through the school’s involvement in the Power of Reading project.


Children also choose reading material from class book corners, the school library and from a variety of reading schemes where books are grouped using the nationally recognized book banding system.  Children read to a teacher at least once a week, either in a Guided Reading session or individually.


We teach synthetic phonics daily in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2, based on Letters and Sounds and the Jolly Phonics scheme.  Children are encouraged to use phonic techniques (decoding and sounding out) to read and spell words but “tricky” (high frequency) words are taught and learnt discretely. When learning to read, we also encourage children to make use of other strategies such as using contextual and picture clues, which support reading for meaning.