At Hadleigh Community Primary School, we want all our children to leave us as fluent speakers, readers and writers. We strive to empower children to develop a passion for reading and to use their reading skills not just to develop their subject specific knowledge, but also to widen their exposure to and understanding of a range of genres as well as broadening their imaginations. Children will experience the shared reading of a broad range of texts and be motivated to read widely both inside and outside of school. They will build a strong understanding that reading is for gaining information across the curriculum and for pleasure. Teachers will introduce children to a choice of ambitious vocabulary drawn from the books and texts read, so that children have a wide vocabulary when they enter secondary school and are able to make connections between texts, their lives and the wider world. Children’s strong understanding of grammar and transcription skills enable them as confident writers.

Greatest Read Book Lists 2021

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Through English we aim to:

  • enable children to develop and explore their skills in English with increasing maturity and awareness of audience
  • model to children how to improve the quality of their written work in English leading to them effectively edit and improve to a higher standard
  • teach children to critically analyse their work and the work produced by others
  • encourage and celebrate creativity and imagination in this subject
  • teach basic skills such as grammar terminology and comprehension leading to their application across the wider curriculum
  • build on reading comprehension skills at all levels
  • use high quality class texts to help develop the learning and understanding of various topics.

We understand that children learn best when they are provided opportunities to revisit, revise and reflect on their skills and understanding in order to apply their learning across all areas of the curriculum. Pupils are given opportunities to develop their use, knowledge and understanding of spoken and written English using a cross-curricular approach, with opportunities to consolidate and reinforce taught literacy skills.


At Hadleigh Community Primary School, teachers share their love of reading through daily reading for pleasure or story time sessions. Children are read a wide range of texts to build knowledge and for pleasure, and are taught to write for a range of purposes and audiences with strong links across the curriculum.  Reading is brought to life through experiences and the use of technology, which provide children with rich experiences to discuss, make links and share and build upon previous knowledge. A rigorous programme of systematic synthetic phonics provides children with a tool to decode, before building fluency and the ability to comprehend and question independently. As children move through the school, they are taught to infer, predict, explain, retrieve, sequence and summarise.


We use a variety of strategies to evaluate the knowledge, skills and understanding that our children gain as they progress from Reception to Year 6:

  • Our KS2 Reading results in 2019 for the high standard in reading was 38% which was significantly above the National result and placed us in the highest 20% of all primary schools in 2019.
  • Our KS2 reading results in 2019 for greater depth reading was 38% which was significantly above the national result and placed us in the highest 20% of all primary schools in 2019.
  • Our KS1 attainment of greater depth in reading was 36% and was significantly above the National result and placed us in the highest 20% of all primary schools in 2019.
  • Our KS1 attainment in 2019 for greater depth in reading was 36% which was again significantly above the national result and placed us in the highest 20% of all primary schools in 2019.
  • The children have also brought their experiences of literature to life in different exciting ways. The following link explains how the school embraced Shakespeare week last academic year – https://www.shakespeareweek.org.uk/news/shakespeare-week-action-hadleigh-community-primary/
  • Children’s oracy and acting skills are encouraged and celebrated through various year group productions.

Our children are given every opportunity to participate in a range of learning experiences beyond their classroom. These opportunities include trips to castles, School Camp, zoo trips, adventure centres and local sites of interest providing children with stimulating real-life experiences to pin their English reading, writing and speaking development to. English learning is practised and embedded across the curriculum. Speaking and writing outcomes draw from knowledge gained in other subjects and English skills are used to enhance learning elsewhere.


At Hadleigh Community Primary School we strive to ensure that children become successful fluent readers by the end of Key Stage One, who are eager to read for pleasure, as well as reading to learn.

In Reception we ensure that the teaching of reading is based upon a systematic approach to teaching synthetic phonics daily and that children are given the opportunity to apply their phonics skills to not only decoding words but also to reading phonetically appropriate texts and books. This approach of delivering high quality daily phonics sessions continues into Key Stage 1 and where appropriate Key Stage 2 with specific children.


  • To teach children aural discrimination, phonemic awareness and rhyme to aid reading, writing and spelling development.
  • To encourage the use of segmenting and blending so that decoding skills provide a sound foundation for reading, writing and spelling.
  • To ensure the teaching of phonics is interactive and investigative.
  • To ensure that children know the 44 phonemes within the English language.
  • To teach children to recognise graphemes within words and associate them with the appropriate phoneme when reading and spelling.
  • To provide children with strategies to identify and apply their knowledge of ‘tricky words’ both in their reading and writing.
  • To enable children to apply phonic awareness to help develop the fluency of reading.

Until September 2019 the school based their phonics teaching upon and followed the progression laid out in ‘The Letters and Sounds’ document. We also used the Jolly phonics actions to support the learning of the individual phonemes. In September 2019 after a review of the teaching of phonics, ‘The Song of Sounds’ scheme was introduced into Reception. We have selected this scheme because it adopts a multi- sensory approach which is engaging and stimulating for all. The impact of this scheme is being monitored with the intention of introducing the song and the actions into Nursery in the Spring term of 2021, into Year 1 in September 2021 and Year 2 in September 2022. This scheme provides a song, actions and handwriting rhymes as supporting materials to help the children engage with and learn their phonics.

In Reception and KS1 phonics is delivered through a programme of discrete daily phonics lessons.

  • In Reception we cover Phase 2 and Phase 3 phonemes whilst also providing experience of applying Phase 2 and 3 phonemes in order to allow them to decode words from Phase 4, whilst also teaching the Phase 2 and 3 tricky words.
  • In Year 1 they revisit the children’s knowledge of Phase 3 phonemes whilst teaching Phase 4 and Phase 5 and the relevant tricky words.
  • In Year 2 they revisit Phase 5 phonemes, moving on into Phase 6, whilst also learning the relevant KS1 high frequency words.

KS2 children who are not yet fluent readers are provided with tailored small group or individual phonics sessions, designed to close the gap between themselves and their peers. Throughout KS2 revision of phonics is addressed where appropriate within the context of English and other lessons, such as enabling children to decode subject specific language.

To learn more about phonics we recommend that you visit a website called Oxford Owls using the link – https://www.oxfordowl.co.uk/for-home/reading/phonics-made-easy/

Here you will find a video explaining the synthetic approach to teaching phonics, information about how to pronounce each phoneme, how children learn to blend and read words and also ideas for how you can support your child at home.

The ‘Song of Sounds’ song can be found using the link – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=48uf9I6P2xQ

Y1 Phonics Screening Check

What is the phonics screening check?

The Year 1 phonics screening check is an assessment of your child’s ability to apply their phonics knowledge to decode words. It helps your school confirm whether your child has made the expected progress. The check usually takes place in June.

How does the check work?

Your child will sit with their teacher and be asked to read 40 words aloud. Your child may have read some of the words before, while others will be completely new. The check will contain a mix of real words and ‘silly’ or pseudo words (such as ‘vap’ or ‘jound’). Pseudo words are included because they are new to all children. Children cannot read the pseudo words by using their memory or vocabulary; they have to use their decoding skills based upon their phonics knowledge.

The check normally takes just a few minutes to complete and there is no time limit. If your child is struggling, the teacher will stop the check. The check is carefully designed not to be stressful for your child. If you were notified last year that your child had not met the required standard to the pass the test in Year 1, they will be retaking the test again in Year 2.

After the check

You will be told about your child’s progress in phonics and how he or she has done in the screening check by the end of the Summer Term. If your child has found the check difficult, support will be put in place to help him or her improve. You might like to ask how you can support your child to take the next step in reading.

Reading Schemes – Reception and Key Stage 1

Our school maintains a large stock of reading books for children to borrow and take home. These are organised into different colour bands using the National Book Bands scheme. Within these bands there are books from a range of reading schemes including The Oxford Reading Tree, Floppy’s Phonics, Collins Big Cat and Phonics Bug. There is a range of both fiction and non-fiction books, as well as poetry. The bands link to our school assessments. Staff regularly check and assess children’s ability to ensure the children take home books carefully pitched to their ability level. Children share books as a class, in groups and individually. Reception and KS1 children are able to take home a free choice reading book which is based upon their appropriate book band colour and is linked to their current phonics learning/ability.

Reading Schemes – Key Stage 2 The importance of reading cannot be overstated, which is why pupils in KS2 at Hadleigh Community Primary School use a software specifically designed to help all children learn to read and read to learn, regardless of their ability. Hadleigh Community Primary School Headteacher: Mr G. Pilkington Deputy Head: Mr C. Dadds 3/5 Accelerated Reader (AR) is a technology based product which helps: • Make essential reading practice more effective for every child. • Personalise reading practice to each student’s current level. • Assess pupils’ reading with four types of quizzes: Reading Practice and Vocabulary Practice. • Build a lifelong love of reading and learning. The books in KS2 are located in our two library areas, one for Upper KS2 and one for Lower KS2. These are inviting spaces that are open for Y3/4 children before school and Y5/6 children at lunch times to complete AR quizzes. (Some time is also available for quizzes in class.) Every term each class also visits Hadleigh town Library. Any pupils who do not have their own library card are provided with an application form prior to the visit