Scroll to content
01642 242309
Thorntree Academy home page

Extol Trust

Contact Us
  • Learn
  • Learn
  • Thrive
  • Thrive
  • Celebrate
  • Celebrate

Developing Reading Across the Academy

Developing Readers

Whole class reading lessons are delivered across school focussing on the key components of reading: from book talk and sharing in EYFS to detailed comprehension answers in Y6. Whole class novels/books link directly to our writing curriculum to provide children with a depth of knowledge about the text they are studying.  This creates an environment in which reading is held in high regard.


Key principles of reading pedagogy at Thorntree academy

  1. Key skills taught in reading:



The symbols above summarise the key skills our children are taught during whole class reading lessons. For each of these headings, children are exposed to a variety of formats with comprehension questions centring around the class story.

In addition, these symbols also support children outside of the reading lesson where reading is being used as a stimulus for another curriculum subject.

The reading assessment document is used to provide progression in each of these areas. E.g:




The vocabulary symbol is used whenever a tier 2 or tier 3 word is being explicitly taught (no matter which subject this may be in).

Vocabulary is infused throughout the whole of our curriculum leading to pupils’ greater understanding of the world around them. We have a strong aspiration to close the vocabulary gap so that children can have greater success as adults and therefore greater mental health.

To help ensure all children have a vocabulary-rich understanding, we:

  • provide children with a language rich environment
  • explicitly teach tier 2 and tier 3 words
  • provide daily reading opportunities that include vocabulary that is unfamiliar
  • prioritise high quality interactions with children
  • practise formal and informal vocabulary


We use a number of different format to investigate vocabulary across the curriculum:



High-quality, current texts


At Thorntree, our book lists aren’t static: they evolve with each class based on new releases; children’s interests and increasing cultural capital. We believe that reading aloud to children is incredibly important. Therefore, every class at Thorntree Academy is read to by an adult daily


Independent Reading

Children have 1:1 reading time with an adult in school every week; more frequently for some children. We use boom reader to record independent reading both in school and at home.

Children have access to a wide variety of fiction, non-fiction and poetry books to read independently. After children have moved on from soundswrite books, we use the Oxford Reading Tree alongside Collins Big Cat scheme We have also invested heavily in books from Badger Learning which allow children to choose books from current authors but matched to their own level.