#FocusOnReading No 9 – The Round Up

With the autumn term drawing to a close, it seems timely to reflect on the Primary English Autumn 2014 #FocusOnReading.

The highlight of our #FocusOnReading came early in October with our reading conference led by reading expert, James Clements. This was a practical and inspirational day which left our delegates with job lists longer than their arms, but smiles on their faces brought on by looking at wonderful books and discussing ways of developing a reading culture in their schools. We highly recommend you take a look at James’ website.

This was quickly followed by our autumn term English Subject Leader CPD where our keynote session focused on the leadership of reading. This session used vignettes of practice from the Ofsted Ready to Read report to support colleagues in identifying the good (and not so good) reading practice taking place in their schools. We’ve found this report an invaluable source of advice for the leadership of reading and it is something we will be using again as we continue to support English subject leaders and teachers with the teaching of reading.

Partnership working has been an important part of the #FocusOnReading. Finding likeminded people to work with is exciting and stimulating. The result of one such partnership being the Mini Tales produced by Thinking Child. This series of short stories is simply brilliant for guided reading in upper Key Stage 2, and as the author of the accompanying teacher’s guide I can’t help but tell you how much you should consider buying this resource for your school! We must also thank our partner school on this project – John Shelton Primary, Coventry for allowing us to take over their Y5 and Y6 classrooms whilst we filmed their children using the Mini Tales. Thanks guys, you were brilliant!

Writing about practice is important to us here at Primary English HQ. During our #FocusOnReading we’ve continued to update our website with articles on: phonics, guided reading, and hearing children read aloud. We’ve also extended our partnerships to two new visiting bloggers, Andrea Sherratt and Lynne Burns who have brought fresh voices to our blog. We have also continued to write regular articles for Teach Primary magazine meaning that the Primary English approach to reading and writing has been taken to a new and expanding audience.

So, as we bring down the curtain on autumn term 2014 and our #FocusOnReading, we look into 2015 and our #FocusOnSpaG.

Rachel Clarke, Director – Primary English

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