St Michael's

Church of England Academy

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Reading Scheme

Reading at St Michael’s


The profile of reading is extremely high at St Michael’s and we are passionate about helping children to become fluent, expressive and resilient readers. We offer children a wide range of opportunities in which to enjoy books. These include offering a well-resourced, varied reading scheme, class sets of books for daily reading lessons and school and class libraries. We endeavour to provide children with books that will engage, inspire and captivate their imagination, as we believe that reading opens the door to a world of opportunities.


Reading Scheme


Our Reading Scheme, Pearson's 'Bug Club' , is banded using guidance from the Institute of Education. The books are grouped in colour bands and  this matches synthetic phonics teaching in Reception and KS1. Books are allocated a colour based on difficulty of words, the length of the book and the appropriateness of the content. The books in each band have been carefully selected in order to provide a wide range of opportunities to practise and develop different reading skills and stamina. Each book band contains a large variety of fiction and non-fiction books from different authors. We also encourage children to change their own books as this promotes the skills of choice and develops a love of reading. As well as their banded reading book, children can also take home library books to further enhance their interest in reading.


Our book band progresses in the following order:


















Black (Free Reader)


Free Readers


Once children have successfully moved through the reading scheme, they then become ‘Free readers’ and can choose their home reading book. As a reward for becoming a ‘Free reader’, they can select a brand new book to take home and keep.


Reading Diaries and Reading at Home


Children are expected to bring their reading book and home reading diary into school every day. They have the opportunity to change their book or a member of staff can help them to select a new one. Within our reading diaries, there is information to help parents read at home with their children. This includes: help in understanding phonics, question prompts for comprehension and national curriculum spellings. As part of our homework, children are expected to read at home every day to supplement the teaching of reading in school.


Whole Class Reading


At St Michael’s we are passionate about teaching reading in an exciting, innovative and engaging way. That is why we teach reading through ‘whole class reading’ lessons with all children reading the same text. We have carefully selected whole class sets of books that will challenge, motivate and inspire our children and in turn develop them into resilient, proficient lifelong readers. We teach five 40 minute reading lessons per week, which carefully and precisely focus on different reading skills. Children have the opportunity to develop fluency, intonation and expression within the lesson, as well as applying their strategies to tackle unfamiliar or tricky words.