Whole School Literacy - Information for Parents
How to Support Reading at Home from Mrs Luton (English intervention)
Reading intervention in English from Mrs Luton (English intervention)
Ashton Park School strives for excellence at every opportunity for our students. Literacy sits at the heart of them being able to thrive and succeed.
We want our students to be enthusiastic, empathetic and critical readers; creative, convincing and accurate writers; articulate, confident and engaging speakers.
Disciplinary literacy* empowers students to flourish in subject areas as they develop the core vocabulary that they need to access key texts and articulate themselves, in speech and in writing, clearly and coherently, while exploring challenging concepts.
Reading for pleasure and reading for progress sit hand in hand, in equipping our students with the skills needed to succeed. Reading breaks down barriers and takes us to other worlds and opportunities; exposing us to experiences that may be alien to us or which may bring us comfort in their familiarity. Reading provides opportunities to reflect and ask questions, and to stretch and challenge their thinking; all the time exposing them to vocabulary that broadens our horizons further and makes the impossible possible.
* Disciplinary literacy emphasises ways of knowing and communicating knowledge within a subject discipline. It helps students understand how language works in different subject areas and supports their understanding of how vocabulary is used, how question phrasing will shape the answer expected, and how to interpret the written and graphic materials used for learning. (National Literacy Trust)
Literacy at Ashton Park School
At Ashton Park School a range of strategies are used to support and develop students’ literacy across the curriculum.
Students in years 7 to 11 have all sat reading tests that will enable teachers to identify those students in need of additional support and guidance, and allocate intervention sessions where applicable. This information is also used by teachers to ensure that lesson content is appropriately pitched to all our learners, and that adaptations can be made for individuals.
Literacy is the bread and butter of English faculties, and here at Ashton Park School we encourage regular independent reading - this is embedded in home learning for years 7 and 8, who also have the opportunity in lessons to read independently and visit the LRC to change their books.
Wider reading in English
For each KS3 unit in English, there is a reading list to complement the study of the chosen text and themes. The following links will take you to the reading lists:
Key Stage 3
Clicking on the images of the books in the lists will take you to reviews. A cross indicates that the book is part of a series and a star indicates mature themes.
Key Stage 4
Wider reading is also available for years 10 and 11 here.
Developing good reading habits
Reciprocal reading strategies help to improve students’ reading comprehension using four strategies: predicting, questioning, clarifying and summarising. Modelling, guiding and applying these strategies can happen at home, as well as in school, as you encourage your child to become more reflective in their reading.
Predicting: what type of genre is the book likely to be? How do they know? What will happen next in the text?
Questioning: Good readers ask questions. This might include questions about a text’s main idea, important details, and inferences they might make about the text. Ask questions using the following prompts: Who? What? Where? When? Why? How? What if?
Clarifying: This helps students monitor their own understanding as they identify problems that they are having comprehending parts of the text. Having a dictionary to hand, or available online, can help readers to clarify vocabulary and aid their understanding of the text. Sometimes readers may need to reread sections of the text, chunk it into smaller segments, or talk to someone about it to support their understanding.
Summarising: readers recall and arrange in order only the important events in the text. Summarising helps us to understand and remember what we have read - a key skill for revising!
Understanding words is critical to good communication and lays the foundation for reading, writing and oracy. Extending vocabulary enables students to thrive. As faculties continue to develop their curriculum offer, core vocabulary is an essential part of what students need to learn. Disciplinary literacy is about making sure our learners have the skills they need to be great mathematicians, scientists, historians etc. - having the vocabulary to decode texts and engage with more challenging content is essential to securing the best outcomes for your child.
The Tutor Programme
Opportunities for literacy are also a key focus for the pastoral team. The tutor programme, which students engage with during morning registration, supports students with their oracy skills as they discuss and share their ideas while exploring SMSC content; encourages a reading culture in school – providing access to a range of fiction and non-fiction during Register, Read and Respond; and engages with vocabulary acquisition with a focus on root words in Word of the Week.
The Learning Resource Centre
The LRC plays a vital role in encouraging our students to read for pleasure, as well as to support their study. Students may visit the LRC outside of lesson times - before school, as well as during break and lunch. They can visit for quiet study, to read and/or complete their homework. The ladies in the library would love to see them.