"There are many little ways to enlarge your child’s world. Love of books is the best of all.”
Every child at Hollywell is encouraged to develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information. We use a wide-ranging reading scheme which include: Collins Big Cat, Phonics Bug, Oxford Literacy Web, Fireflies, Tree tops, Oxford Reading Tree, Usborne and much more - through which we aim to teach children to read easily, fluently and with good understanding. Every child is given a book to read at home starting with wordless ‘pre-reader’ books, succeeding onto phonic-based books for Key Stage 1. These books are written with a mix of high-frequency and decodable words to develop a range of reading strategies. Our books become progressively more challenging as our children’s fluency increases, and cover a wide range of genres and subjects. To complement our Home Reading scheme, children take part in a Guided Reading session.
Hollywell uses a synthetic phonics approach to teaching reading in its early stages. There are two crucial things to learn; that sounds are represented by written letters, and how to blend the sounds together to make words. All children in Early Years and KS1 are given a daily synthetic phonics session to build these fundamental reading skills, and this support is extended into Key Stage 2 for children who may need additional support.
Comprehension skills are developed in Guided Reading sessions through pupils’ experience of high-quality discussion with the teacher, as well as from reading and discussing a range of stories, poems and non-fiction within English lessons. Within Guided Reading and English, children read widely a range of fiction and non-fiction texts to develop their knowledge of themselves and the world in which they live, to establish an appreciation and love of reading, and to gain knowledge across the curriculum.
Hollywell pupils are encouraged to become members of Kimberley Library as soon as they join school. Half termly, each class has the opportunity to walk to this local library to swap books, work on important library skills and to share a story with parent volunteers and their teacher.
World Book Day is celebrated in various entertaining and enjoyable ways from inviting an author or poet to the school to dressing up as a favourite book character. Around this time, the children take part in a Readathon whereby they receive vouchers that can be exchanged for Usborne books to keep and raise money for the school’s own library.
Literacy at Hollywell embraces a wide range of genres, purposes and opportunities for speaking, listening and writing. We actively encourage our children to appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage, and ensure that children acquire a wide vocabulary.
At Hollywell Primary School there is a clear progression in the teaching of writing. This includes the familiarisation of the text type through reading, the identification of structure and language features, modelled writing, shared writing, supported composition, guided writing and independent writing. High quality texts are used to challenge, enthuse and engage children. The progression of teaching writing includes exploring features, planning, drafting, assessing and editing. Grammar and punctuation is covered during extended sessions.
Key Stage 1 children have a session of phonics each day. Key Stage 2 children use a 15-minutes-a-day spelling programme: Read Write Inc. This approach is underpinned by phonics and covers all of the spelling requirements for the National Curriculum.
Above all, Hollywell strives to offer a challenging, stimulating Literacy curriculum in which children develop a real sense of awe and wonder and thoroughly enjoy the writing process.