We love reading at Royston St John Baptist CE Primary School!

Reading lessons take place every day. The mornings begin with a taught lesson on reading. Children in KS2 access reading as soon as they sit down in a morning; assessing high-quality texts and language rich books that encourage a love of reading. Teachers focus on different aspects of reading in a structured way allowing children to apply skills previously taught.

All children from Reception Class to Year Four take home a reading record and reading book which they can change regularly in our school library. Children in Years Five and Six do not have reading records as we promote reading at length for pleasure without this having to be recorded by an adult. We recommend that children read at home for at least 10 minutes every day.  We encourage every child to read with someone at home every day. We also recommend that parents and carers read to their children every day if possible as part of a daily routine. You can support your child by encouraging them to talk about their reading and ask them questions to check their understanding.  Our school library is levelled according to vocabulary used within the text and are books that we feel are high-quality texts.

We all love to listen to stories read by adults!  We do it as often as we can! Children at Royston enjoy been read to daily, across school, for the last 15 minutes of everyday. The books we read to children can be seen on our ‘Reading Spines’.



At Royston St John the Baptist Primary school, we deliver phonics using the Read, Write, Inc. scheme. Children in Foundation stage Year One and some children still needing phonics in Year 2 access streamed phonics daily to help them rapidly develop their phonetic knowledge in their reading and writing.

All words are made up of individual sounds. Your child will learn to blend the sounds together to form words. e.g. in ‘mat’ we have the sounds ‘m’, ‘a’, ‘t’, ship – ‘sh’, ‘i’, ‘p’. In our daily phonics sessions, we teach these sounds and give opportunity for children to practise reading and spelling words containing these sounds. We also give children decodable books containing sounds and words they can read.

At least once each half-term, we assess and group our children based on their stage of reading not age of reading. This means all children access reading at precisely the right level.

We send home ‘Read, Write Inc.’ phonics books for your child to read to you. These books are at the level of phonics that your child is currently working at and allows them to continue to develop their reading skills at home. With each reading, children’s fluency increases and this allows them to focus on their comprehension skills. Alongside this, we read stories to children, stories they cannot yet read for themselves. To support this, we also send home a ‘love for reading’ book each week so that you can share quality reading time at home too.

Our aim is for children to finish the ‘Read, Write, Inc.’ Phonics programme quickly so they can start reading these books for themselves. Some children need extra practise when learning to read so we teach these children on a one-to-one basis for ten minutes every day – on top of their group lesson. Children know this as ‘Pinny Time’. We aim to make sure they ‘keep up’ from the beginning so that they don’t need to ‘catch up’ later on.

Using ‘Read, Write, Inc.’ we make learning to read easy for children because we start by teaching them just one way of reading and writing every sound. We teach using pure sounds. Children need to know sounds – not letter names – to read words. We pronounce the sounds clearly, using pure sounds, so that your child will be able to blend the sounds together to make words more easily.

Once children know one way of reading and writing every sound, they start to learn spellings for each sound they already know.


The teaching of phonics will enable your child to:

  • learn the sound combinations that each of the 44 phonemes make.
  • Learn to read real and nonsense words using ‘Fred Talk’.
  • Learn to read non-decodable words such as ‘the’ and ‘said’.
  • Read decodable stories and non-fiction books
  • Be able to confidently answer questions about their reading to show their comprehension.
  • Have a clear understanding of sounding out words to be able to read and write sentences.

To support the provision of Early Reading and Phonics at Royston St Johns, we have a dedicated Early Reading and Phonics Leader, who is available on a daily basis to ensure the quality of the delivery of phonics and provide real-time, on-the-spot Continuing Professional Development as necessary to ensure the quality of Phonics teaching and learning at our school.


Fresh Start- KS2

At Royston St John the Baptist Primary School, we deliver Fresh Start as a Key Stage Two intervention for children who still need support with the synthetic approach to reading. Fresh Start enables children to make rapid progress in reading and phonics through daily sessions in small groups. These sessions are focused on teaching children specific sounds, which enable children to read words and texts rapidly and with ease.

Children who access Fresh Start will also take home a reading book that matches the specific sound they are learning in their sessions at school.