St Matthew's Reading Offer


“A rigorous approach to the teaching of reading develops learners’ confidence and enjoyment in reading. At the early stages of learning to read, reading materials are closely matched to learners’ phonics knowledge.”


At St Matthew’s School guided reading is taught daily by a whole class approach that we call Book Club. This approach has been key for increasing pupil engagement and developing their love of reading. We have invested in high quality training and texts to ensure our pupils receive the best reading offer available.


Literacy Leaves Rationale

The Literary Leaves are a suite of book-based comprehension resources for Y2-Y6 designed to support teachers with the teaching of reading, using whole books, rather than extracts. They are created for use in a whole-class reading session or a guided reading session when the skills of reading comprehension are being taught. 

Each Literary Leaf has 10-20 session notes, with each session focussing on a particular skill or two, ensuring that children secure these deeply. In many cases the same question stem is used several times to ensure the teacher can model how to answer this type of question, before the children have the opportunity to apply it themselves.

The leaves are not meant to replace teacher’s own planning but should support the teacher with asking the right questions at the right time and planning for activities that help children to become critical readers.

In Year 1, pupils begin with half the week spent on a carousel approach (similar to that experienced in EYFS) and half a whole class ‘Book Club’ lesson. This is built on throughout the year. By the end of the year Year 1 pupils have a full programme of Book Club lessons in line with the rest of the school.


Additional Reading Opportunities at St Matthew’s

In addition to the St Matthew’s Reading Offer, pupils at St Matthew’s will also benefit from:

1:1 Reading with Teaching Assistants

Provision is made for children who need to accelerate their progress or who have fewer opportunities to read at home. These pupils receive daily 1:1 reading sessions to boost their fluency at lunchtimes or during the afternoons.

1:1 Reading with Volunteers

Both parents and volunteers from the local community commit to visiting the school on a regular basis to read with those who need additional support.

EYFS & KS1 Book Share

Nursery, Reception and Year 1 offer a weekly session where parents are invited to share a book with their children in their classrooms. It is a valuable opportunity for relatives to enjoy a book with their child and learn how best to meet their children’s needs when supporting them with reading at home. 

Early Reading Parent Workshops

Parents are invited into the Nursery, Reception and Year 1 for a bespoke reading workshop that highlights the importance of reading, how it is taught at St Matthew’s and what parents can do to support at home. They also attend a phonics lesson in their child’s class to gain a better understanding of the strategies we use.

KS1 & KS2 Libraries

St Matthew’s offers a wide range of high quality classic and contemporary texts from different genres across two libraries within the school. In Key Stage 2, pupils have the opportunity to run the library for their own classes. Children acting as librarians experience real pride in their role of responsibility and are also tasked with organising fundraising events such as the Whole School Book Swap.

Visits to Redhill Library

Children across the Key Stages will have the opportunity to visit the local library for events at least once a year. Staff from the library also visit the school annually to share the Summer Reading Challenge and inspire them to take part.

Visiting Authors

Throughout the year, children will meet a range of visiting authors who inspire them to read more widely and learn about what writing a book involves from a published author’s perspective.

Book Week & World Book Day

St Matthew’s always celebrates World Book Day as part of an especially themed week full of exciting activities that raise the profile of reading and motivate the children to be more adventurous in their selection of books. Previous Book Weeks have included:

  • Visiting authors
  • The Story Bus
  • Themed dress-up day
  • Reading competitions
  • Visits to the local library and Waterstones
  • Book Fairs
  • Visiting theatres
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