More information about reading
We have been asked by several of you for more information about the Book Bands we have introduced. The document below gives you an approximate idea of which book bands fit with each National Curriculum year and how long a child may spend on each band. These are not exact – some children will take longer to move on as they consolidate and then deepen their reading skills, while others will move on more quickly. Our aim, however, is that by the end of Year 6 all children’s reading skills are at the Expected Standard (or above) and they are ready and able to access the Secondary School curriculum.
The document also includes information about what the children are expected to meet at the end of Year R, Year 2, Year 4 and Year 6. You will note that the expectations for what the children can do at each stage is high and involves retrieving information, inference and deduction, understanding vocabulary in context as well as being able to summarise, predict, discuss and explain what they are reading. We are also promoting reading speed and stamina as these are increasingly important skills for the SATs and the demands of Secondary School. This is why children sometimes seem to ‘hang on’ to a school reading book longer than one they might borrow from the library – we use school books to teach reading and use them to teach different skills.
The children’s reading will be continuously assessed and teachers will use their professional judgment about when to move them to the next band. Your support with this is important, so please hear your children read – and ask them questions about their books – as often as you can. Your comments in their Reading Record are a valuable source of information about their reading development.
In the coming months we will be launching ‘Reading Target Cards’ so that you and your children know what they are working on and can see the progress they are making (an example is in the document above). Once in place, we will be holding reading workshops to show parents how we teach phonics and reading and to give tips about how they can support their children at home.