English & Reading (including Phonics)

Northfield St Nicholas English and eading

English & Reading



In Nursery the children focus on the pre-phonic skills needed to support phonological development. We concentrate on developing children’s speaking and listening skills, rhythm and rhyme and alliteration. The emphasis is to get children attuned to the sounds around them and ready to begin developing oral blending and segmenting skills. ‘Fred talk’ is used daily to support oral blending and segmenting development.

When appropriate we introduce children to the first set of sounds following the Read, Write Inc programme.

Phonics is taught in a highly structured programme of daily lessons across Reception/Y1 in groups differentiated according to children’s phonic awareness and development. The Read Write Inc programme is followed. This allows the children to develop their phonetic awareness and apply these skills to their reading. Each session gives an opportunity for children to revisit their previous experience, be taught new skills, practise together and apply what they have learned.

Additional phonics intervention is delivered to pupils who did not pass the phonics screening test at the end of year 1.

Phonics Assessment

Children’s progress is continually reviewed to allow for movement between groups, and children move phonics group when it is felt necessary to meet their needs. Children are formally assessed at the end of each half term to ensure that they are in the correct groups.

The national Phonics screening check is performed in June of Year 1. The children who did not meet the required standard for the check in year 1 enter again in year 2 with additional support.

Phonics is taught in Key stage 2 as an intervention strategy when required.

Reading in school

We love reading at Northfield St. Nicholas Primary Academy.

As a school we strive to engage and enthuse children with reading though high quality texts, picture books and a wide range of learning opportunities.

All staff are reading advocates and all learning spaces foster a love of reading.

“After nourishment, shelter and companionship, stories are the thing we need most in the world.’’  Philip Pullman

Reading is central to our curriculum and children have many opportunities to engage with texts throughout the school day.

Our ‘Lost Library’ is an exciting and inviting space for all pupils to access throughout the school day.

Our Reading aims are:

  • To develop a love of reading
  • To develop accurate and fluent readers
  • To develop the children’s vocabulary so that they can easily access a range of texts
  • To develop excellent comprehension skills, through the use of Reading VIPERS, so children can demonstrate a good understanding of what they have read
  • To support children who require additional help with their reading

Power of Reading

The power of Reading is an essential part of our school philosophy around learning. Research shows that the most successful adults in our society have two key attributes.

A love of reading and books. A sense of hope.

The Power of Reading books all help generate this for our children. Generating engagement with texts through quality learning experiences, roofed in a child’s natural curiosity.

Empowering our teachers to generate high quality engagement with high quality texts as a part of high quality book based learning experiences.

Reading at home

At home is one of the most important ways in which you can help your child. As you share books, you are helping improve your child’s reading skills and showing your child that reading is an enjoyable activity to take part in. We are incredibly lucky at Northfield St Nicholas Primary Academy to have an extensive and well stocked library, where children can access a wide range of reading materials that they can borrow and share with you at home.

If your child is finding it difficult to know what they want to read, here are some ideas:

  • Register on the CLPE’s Core Books website for freeto view regularly updated booklists sorted by age-range, genre, author or publisher (https://www.corebooks.org.uk/).
  • Speak to your class teacher or our school’s reading advocate.
  • Speak to other parents. What books do their child(ren) enjoy?
  • Go to our local library and explore the wide selection of books available.

Reading questions at home

English Curriculum (Reading & Writing) :

Here are Northfield St. Nicholas we aim to transform the way that teachers teach and the way that children feel about reading and writing through the Power of Reading.

All children engage with high quality picture books, novels, poetry and non-fiction texts thorough a wide range of teaching approaches. Children are immersed into texts through, music, art, drama, discussion and role play. Other approaches include responding to illustrations, book talk, story mapping and book making. Children take ownership of the texts and engage with them deeply.

NSN English How we do it here

NSN Reading Progression

NSN Reading Book Spine

NSN Reading Domain coverage

Alan Peat progression

NSN Discussion progression document

NSN Explanation progression document

NSN Information progression document

NSN Instructions progression document

NSN Narrative progression document

NSN Non-chronological-reports progression document

NSN Persuasion progression document

NSN Poetry progression document

NSN Recount progression document

Spelling progression document