Reading in the Early Years
In our early years at Oasis Academy Fir Vale, we value that reading is an essential skill for future success. But in order to be a successful life long reader we need to develop these key skills.
One of the key essential components to Early Reading is enhancing the pupil's enjoyment of stories and an eagerness to explore books. We nurture this through at least daily shared story sessions, reading mornings and a well-stocked & inviting book corner that included Author text and the Pie Corbett reading spine stories. Pupils need to learn the logistics of using a book, distinguishing from print and pictures, turning pages accurately, understanding of characters events and text type.
As James Britton clearly highlights “Reading and Writing float on a sea of talk”, in the EYFS, everything we do focuses on the development of language skills, from language interventions, sustained thinking interactions and 'Once upon a picture' sessions. We value that pupils need to understand language and be able to use a language, before they can learn how to read and write in that language.
Attainment for listening
Lots of activities from the Phase 1 Letters and Sounds Document are used, alongside Attention Autism sessions and concentration tasks such as Beat Baby and Lola the Listening Leopard. If pupils cannot listen, then the building for reading will be hindered such as the ability to discriminate between sounds, blend, segmenting, inference skills.
We plan session and opportunities that develop skills such as rhyme, alliteration, oral blending and segmenting . As well as using ideas from schemes such as Word Aware, Stories for Talking and Talk for Writing to help pupils enhance their understanding of words, word structures and semantics.
Knowing print has meaning
Only when we have built on the prior key skills, we look at print having meaning through environmental printing games, modelling the purpose of words and text through carpet inputs and throughout provision.
Once these skills are developed, we can then introduce the phonemes each letter makes, teach children the skill of blend and segmenting words and introduce tricky words. Using strategies such as 'phonic fairy' & RWI sessions to begin introducing grapheme phoneme correspondence to the pupils in an engaging way and the use of 'Mr Tricky words' & 'Fred the Frog' for teaching word level reading.