The aim of our reading curriculum is to:

  • Equip children with the skills to become confident, fluent and engaged readers.
  • Enable children to become familiar with a wide range of texts, genres, authors.
  • Children learn to read so that they can read to learn and access the wider curriculum and apply these skills to the wider world.

How Reading links with our school values

Resilience – Children are encouraged to read challenging texts to develop their confidence, stamina and a positive attitude towards reading.
Aspiration – Children will become confident and fluent and will engage with reading beyond school in order to support future learning and development.
Integrity – Through reading a wide range of texts, children learn about key values and morals in order to help them become reliable members of society.
Respect – Children learn to respect people from different cultures and with contrasting life experiences through literature.


  • We follow the National Curriculum and Early Years Development Matters.
  • We teach a systematic programme of phonics, including intervention for children not working at the expected standard. For this we follow the Bug Club scheme.
  • We use guided reading and whole class reading, including interventions and support as necessary.
  • We use quality texts within English lessons and across the curriculum.
  • We have a reading spine of texts for each year group.
  • We have a strong culture of reading including access to school and local libraries, reading competition, author visits, in-school book fairs.


At Acomb we teach phonics using a systematic programme using Pearson Bug Club Phonics.  Children have daily lessons, beginning on their first day in Early Years.  Children read phonically regular texts matched to their current assessed phase in phonics.  Daily pre-teach and intervention sessions are used to prevent children from falling behind.

Here you can see our curriculum newsletters for Reading:

Reading Spine

At Acomb Primary, we have developed our own Reading Spine.

A reading spine is a core of books: a mix of classics and essential reads that help children to engage at a deeper level and enter the world of the story. The intention is to foster a love of reading in children, from Reception right up to Year 6, for them to take into their future.

The purpose of the reading spine is to instil a love of reading in children and to give them the experience of reading a diverse range of texts, appropriate for their age, throughout their years at Acomb Primary School. These books will not necessarily match with topics or be linked to their whole class text, they will be books that are simply there to read and enjoy.

“Imagine a primary school where, over seven years, children are read to, enjoy, discuss and work with a core of around 70 books. These ‘essential reads’ would be a store of classics, creating a living library inside a child’s mind. This is the ‘reading spine’. Schools that have a reading spine build a common bank of stories that bind the community together.” Pie Corbett (author, poet and educational writer)

Every book within our Reading Spine has been selected, reviewed and chosen carefully by all staff in school. This has been a mammoth task – many books have been read and some sadly did not make the cut! We are very excited to present to you our books, which we believe, should be read by children during their time at Acomb Primary School.

Whole Class Reading

At Acomb Primary, we also use Whole Class Reading as a strategy.

Each Phase in Key Stage Two (Y3/4 & Y5/6) have set books that they read across the year as a class.

Children in KS2 will have two whole class reading sessions each week. Class reading enables all children to access a challenging text. Ideally texts chosen should be just above the reach of higher attaining readers and should provide a clear level of challenge for all members of the class. Less confident readers need to be exposed to the high-quality reasoning of more confident readers and become part of these discussions. Mixed attainment pairs might be used to allow for valuable discussions.  Teachers are able to model good use of expression, intonation, volume and expression and pace. Reading and listening to reading for long periods of time can be mentally taxing for some children. Interspersing longer stints of reading with paired discussions/independent follow-up tasks can help with this.

Whole Class Reading Texts