Whole Class Reading

At Ernesettle Community School, the books we select for our Whole Class Reading programme both complement and support the curriculum where appropriate. In Year 4, the in-depth study of the Early Egyptian Civilisation provides essential background knowledge in order for children to develop a schema and create interconnection when later reading ‘Secrets of a Sun King’ by Emma Carroll.

Through in-depth discussions, debates and questioning, children develop schema for core knowledge and values that are transferable. In Year 6, ‘Wonder’ is studied, with discussions centred on the mistreatment of someone because of how they look. This knowledge, and the empathy shared through the text, is ‘tapped into’ when they discuss prejudice, persecution and discrimination when learning about the Holocaust. Same concept: different context.

The texts selected are rich and engaging that also allow for progression within the year group, across the year group and beyond the year group so that our children become confident, fluent and knowledgeable readers.

Our Whole Class Reading sessions begin formally in Year 3, where each child is given a copy of the chosen text to read as a class, together. These books are changed every term and expose children to high quality vocabulary and discussions to inspire their reading and writing. Our Whole Class Reading sessions are designed to instill a love for reading in the children and provide those moments of ‘awe’ and ‘wonder’ when reading something new for the very first time.

Children in Early Years and Key Stage 1 also take part in daily Whole Class Reading sessions, but instead, study a series of engaging picture books linking to their area of study. These sessions not only build and consolidate the learning they complete in their Phonics sessions, it also allows them to begin to understand the ways stories are structured, begin to use a variety of skills including prediction, inference and explanation to support their understanding, but to also provide an opportunity to promote a true love of reading from the outset.