Puttenham Church of England Infant School

Puttenham Church of England Infant School

How We Teach Reading

Reading has a high profile here at Puttenham as we understand that it is the key to effective learning and progress.  We have developed a reading culture so that children appreciate and love books. The skills they learn will help to prepare them for learning in every stage of their education. We know through research that children will increase and improve their vocabulary through extensive reading and this in turn supports their writing.  Every class has a book area where children can enjoy reading books of their choice as well as a well-stocked reading scheme, library and reading shed in the playground.



Teaching reading




Every day the children receive a discrete phonics lesson for approximately 20 minutes. We follow the Letters and Sounds programme. Letters and Sounds is a systematic approach to learning to read using phonics. The phonic approach is to link the letter (grapheme) to the sound (phoneme). The children learn how to blend these sounds together to read words. Research has shown that teaching phonics in this systematic way is the most effective way to teach children to read. The letters and sounds programme has six phases which includes introducing new phonemes and tricky words. Tricky words are also known as common exception words that are frequently featured in books but are not able to be decoded using the phonics method. The children are taught in a structured, multi-sensory approached way. We use jolly phonics and read write inc resources to support learning. They learn fun songs, actions and rhymes to go with the new sounds. More information can be found on the letters and sounds website

Please click the link to hear how sounds are pronounced correctly:




In Reception the children are encouraged to use ‘book talk’ and take a great interest in a variety of books. They learn how to handle books, discuss what is happening in the pictures and to make up their own stories. They will then read words as they begin to apply what they have learnt in their phonics sessions. The children will be given a reading book to share at home.


In KS1 the daily phonics session will continue alongside a greater focus on comprehension and reading for pleasure. Guided reading sessions will take place in which there is a focus on teaching a specific skill and assessing progress. During these sessions the children can also read for their own pleasure, talk about books they like/don’t like, authors and new vocabulary.  Books are given to children to share at home from a variety of fiction, non fiction and poetry books from our reading scheme. Books are colour banded and ordered in accordance with the National Book Banded scheme. Children are assessed carefully and are given the correct colour band book to read. 


Reading schemes we use:

Oxford Reading Tree

Big Cat 

Story worlds




Reading for enjoyment 


Children are encouraged to choose books they like to read from the class libraries and our well-stocked school library. Children can take home up to three books a week. Our children can also enjoy books from our reading shed in the quiet area at play times. This is stocked up with a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry books. The children are encouraged to read in class, assemblies, church services and school plays. At the end of the Year 2 the children learn a poem or read a passage of their favourite book as part of the Puttenham Speaking and Listening Award. The teachers introduce new authors by choosing high quality texts to support the English curriculum and to read to the class.

We love taking part in the World Book Day events and inviting authors in to talk to the children.