Reading enables our children to gain insights into unfamiliar experiences, improve their language and vocabulary, stimulate their imaginations and become independent lifelong learners. We promote a life-long love of reading and sharing books the minute a child joins our Silver Springs Family.
In the early stages of learning to read, our first priority is the systematic teaching of synthetic phonics to ensure that children can confidently decode new texts. We do this with the narrative approach of “Storytime Phonics”. As they become competent decoders, we introduce the teaching of the skills of comprehension through guided reading and the “Reading Gems”, as our older readers become fluent, we deliver whole class reading lessons and written comprehension. This universal approach is supported by a range of evidence-based interventions.
Because we know that success in reading and writing is underpinned by a diet of high-quality texts, we encourage all children to immerse themselves in a variety of genres with rich, wide vocabulary, across the curriculum, providing time and space for children to explore texts in greater depth.
Evidence from Cognitive Science tells us that one of the strongest drivers of reading ability is background knowledge. It provides vocabulary, allows us to bridge gaps which writers leave, increases room in working memory and supports inference. Which means that when we are teaching the broader curriculum, we are also teaching reading.
At Silver Springs, we want all our children to enjoy stories with family at home. However, we recognise that children come to us with a very wide range of starting points and that many parents lack confidence in helping their children with reading at home. We address this through a range of parental engagement and enrichment initiatives supplemented by support materials.