Hitherfield Primary School and Children's Centre


Early Reading Skills

At Hitherfield we use a combination of Letters and Sounds and Jolly Phonics to teach children early reading strategies. From the start of Reception through to Year 2 all children have a daily session of phonics which enables them to become more confident and independent readers.

For more information about Letters and Sounds and Jolly Phonics follow the links below:

Letters and Sounds

Jolly Phonics

Reading in the Curriculum

At Hitherfield Primary School, we are readers. Reading for language and meaning is at the heart of the curriculum at Hitherfield; it is integrated fully with opportunities for ‘speaking and listening’ and ‘writing’ in all subjects. Pupils will experience a variety of reading opportunities throughout their day in every year group: 

  • Phonics – learning the ‘code’ of sounds and letters in words
  • SPaG – spelling, punctuation and grammar i.e. how we use words to construct meaning
  • Modelled/Shared reading – adult-led showing and sharing how reading is an active process
  • Guided reading – the taught skills of reading in practice
  • Independent reading – this can be individual, paired or group turn-taking practice
  • Individual reading – 1:1 focus of an adult, either independently or within a group setting
  • Hearing books read aloud
  • Home/school reading
  • Selecting their own choice of texts
  • Reading whole texts
  • Making close links between reading and writing
  • Reading in other subject areas
  • Reading in the community (out and about)

Reading skills are critical for children’s development, and the enjoyment of reading is essential for children’s educational success. At Hitherfield, we are passionate about reading: it is rejoiced, explored and taught daily because we recognise its central necessity as a life skill. Without it, verbal dexterity, imagination and comprehension become limited.

Fundamentally our aim is to enable children to meaningfully understand and access a range of reading materials to develop a life-long love of reading for pleasure.

Currently under development is our ‘Hitherfield Book Lists’. We have a broad selection of core teaching texts for each year group Nursery to Year 6, around which topics and units of learning can be amalgamated, studied and investigated. Pupils and teachers recommend texts they have enjoyed and can share their opinions and thoughts. Many of the books and texts used and read at Hitherfield are on several recommended book lists available. Below is a link to The National Literacy Trust’s page to their ‘Words for Life’ lists of books for each age and stage of child development:

Words for Life Reading List