Henry Cavendish Primary School

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Reading Curriculum Intent


1. Our curriculum will represent, value and celebrate the diverse society in which we live

Our reading Curriculum aims to ensure that the texts our children are exposed to are reflective of both the wider world and cohort of pupils we teach at Henry Cavendish. We aim to read books which deepen the children’s understanding of the world around them and which build positively upon the image they have of themselves. Our reading curriculum aims to ensure that children are familiar with a diverse range of authors and protagonists are equitable and inclusive. At Henry Cavendish, as part of our ongoing work with Inclusion Labs, we aim to have 25% diverse literature in our school by 2030.

2. All children will develop into confident, articulate communicators.

Our reading curriculum puts talk at the heart of our teaching. Through use of open questioning and prompts, children will develop their thinking and understanding and, over their primary school career, will develop and hone the tools they need to engage in meaningful dialogue around books. In our classrooms, we aim to foster a sense of agency around discussion which will encourage children’s independence and growth as readers.   Our reading curriculum focuses upon the acquisition and application of vocabulary and language to support our children to become the most confident and articulate communicators that they can be.

3. All children will be challenged.

Our reading curriculum seeks to ensure that children are constantly challenged to think deeper and understand more. The texts chosen for children to read independently are carefully selected to ensure a balance of consolidation and challenge. Children are exposed to stories and language beyond the realm of their independent reading level on a daily basis, exposing children to rich and exciting texts to discuss, dissect, compare, review and enjoy. Our reading curriculum aims to increase the ‘reading mileage’ or volume of independent reading experience of each and every child, whilst at the time, creating additional opportunities for lower attaining readers to read more, read variably, with increasing challenge and responsive feedback.  

4. The topic and content of our Curriculum will be varied, immersive and engaging.

Henry Cavendish aim to deliver a systematic, rigorous approach to teaching children how to read in order to establish reading as a lifelong venture. The teaching will combine the application of word reading to reading and writing alongside the development of language comprehension skills using a wide range of different opportunities to do so; this enables children to develop into a rounded reader who is able to decode and discuss.

Our reading curriculum aims to provide a varied ‘reading diet’ across the week, term and year. Where children will be exposed to a wide range of prose, poetry, non-fiction, classic and contemporary literature from a wide range of diverse authors, and where possible characters that represent our community at Henry Cavendish. Children are explicitly taught the skills necessary to become good readers in a progressive way from EYFS to year six. We strive to empower more children to anticipate and experience the satisfaction gained from reading and our curriculum, both in discreet reading lessons and in the wider school life, aims to promote reading for pleasure at every opportunity.

5. All children will use their creativity.

Children who are able to make links between and across texts will have a greater understanding of what they have read and will subsequently have a more positive reading experience.  Our reading curriculum, being so closely linked with our writing curriculum, will teach children to engage with the texts they read as a writer as well as a reader. Children will become adept at ‘magpying’ ideas and styles from authors as they are explicitly taught ‘author skills’

6. All children will become happy, empathetic and confident citizens.

Our reading curriculum aims to give children the tools they need to become life-long, confident readers. Through exposure to a wide range of diverse authors, protagonists and genre, children are encouraged to find and engage with ‘gate-way’ texts that they enjoy.  The texts chosen by Class Teachers for Destination Reader often empower our children to develop their empathy through class discussions and reflection tasks.  Our reading curriculum values and promotes talk as a tool for learning and, as such, children are directed to agree with, build on or challenge the ideas of their peers respectfully within a discussion.

How is English Taught at Henry Cavendish?

Whole School Topic Overview and Progression of Skills