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At The Belfry, we are always striving for ways of building and developing a life-long love of reading. Reading is the enabling skill that allows us to decode our world, communicate across the globe and learn from the past.  From road signs to maps to fiction storybooks to email, without reading, we could not access entire worlds (both real and virtual) of information.


We want our children to leave the Belfry knowing that reading is a wonderful gift, a bonding experience - a chance to go exploring while never leaving your seat!


At The Belfry, our children’s journey with reading begins in EYFS with daily story-time, explicit reading teaching and discovering the building blocks of language. Many of them have never read before, while others come to us with an already in-built love of reading. We consider it a privilege to be the ones to guide them into a life-long love of reading. At the Belfry we believe that the teaching of phonics is of paramount importance in supporting children to read. As such, phonics lessons form a vital role in teaching, learning and intervention at the Belfry.  


In KS1, the teaching and learning of reading is at the heart of our days; from featuring in our chosen books in our English lessons, to daily individual reading, the teaching of daily phonics and our whole class comprehension-based reading lessons. We promote both a love for reading and an inquisitive attitude towards reading with the KS1 class teachers both encouraging and modelling this through their daily class books (chosen from the Five Plagues of Reading). We promote home-school reading through our daily Reading chart where children are rewarded with team point for reading each day and a certificate at the end of the week if they have read each day of the week.


Once they reach KS2, we ensure that they have secured a firm foundation in the basics of reading and where this has not been achieved their knowledge of phonics is heavily in supported to enable them to progress towards this. In KS2 the children are learning to discuss their understanding of a wide variety of fiction and non-fiction, narrative and non-narrative texts - at and around an age-appropriate level - and they are working in class to grow and develop their comprehension skills and their ability to process, evaluate and respond to what they have read at an increasingly mature level.

Our KS2 whole class reading comprehension lessons can entail micro-scoping and focus on sentence structure and will often be chosen intentionally from the Five Plagues of Reading suggestions in order to expand, challenge and support their comprehension of what they read.


We are always investigating and committing to ways of raising engagement, enjoyment and achievement in our children’s reading. From Year 3 – Year 6 we offer a Reading Challenge that really is what it says – a challenge!


We place a high value on exposing our children to books that will ‘successfully navigate reading with confidence’. These books are chosen from the Five Plagues of Reading that are complex beyond a lexical level and demand more from the reading than other types of books. An example of the types of books we choose from are: books with archaic language, books with non-linear time sequences, books with narrative complexities, texts which happen on an allegorical or symbolic level and resistant texts.

5 Reading Plagues!

We use Doug Lemov's 'Reading Reconsidered' to help develop our approach to teaching reading. He identifies 5 types of text that children need to become familiar with: Archaic, Non Linear, Complexity of Narrator, Complexity of Plot, and Resistant texts. We have chosen one from each type that will be covered by the classes, as well as many others. We have also attached a '5 Plagues of Reading' document that will give you a further overview, should you need it!

5 plagues 15 plagues 2

Useful links!


Shakespeare day 1Shakespeare Day 2

Oak Class visited Gresham's in Holt for a day of Shakespeare. The cast of 4 performed an entertaining version of The Tempest. It was a fantastic day, everyone was mesmerized by the performance.

Henry VIth part 3

Reading Challenge Club have been reading Henry VIth Part 3.

Favourite quotes were, "Ah! Clifford, murder not this innocent child."

"Thy father slew my father; therefore die!"

All very bloody but at least it's in iambic pentameter!


The Invisible Man

Reading Club also read HG Wells' The Invisible Man. Some children took it too far.

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