Dedicated Reading Time
At The Skipton Academy, we are passionate in ensuring all our students become competent, confident and fluent readers who can fully access our broad and challenging curriculum. As a result, we have developed a robust literacy and reading strategy to ensure that all our students can experience a rich and diverse reading curriculum, whilst developing the requisite vocabulary, reading, writing and oracy skills to succeed in all subjects. Vocabulary is explicitly and systematically taught both in lessons and during Dedicated Reading Time to enable students to understand the relationships between words and nuances of meaning. A wide vocabulary will empower students to articulate their thoughts, emotions and ideas effectively as well as enabling them to engage more deeply with the written and spoken word. Through reading in particular, students have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually and socially. Children who can read are overwhelmingly more likely to succeed at school, achieve good qualifications, and subsequently enjoy a fulfilling and rewarding career.
Central to our literacy and reading strategy is our Dedicated Reading Time which takes place four times a week after registration and Ready to Learn time. Students follow a well-sequenced reading curriculum, enjoying a wide range of texts which will be read aloud by their form tutors. Reading aloud to children has a profound effect on their reading ability allowing them to hear the expression and intonation that is essential for language learning and vocabulary acquisition. Motivation to read is closely related to reading ability. Consequently, we model effective reading so that all students can participate irrespective of their starting points. We make reading something that all students can access both physically at the same time and place each day and emotionally where they are able to feel like a valued member of The Skipton Academy reading community.
The 3 key aims of Dedicated Reading Time are:
1. To challenge our students to become better readers: to increase students’ fluency, comprehension and vocabulary acquisition through carefully selected texts, ensuring students can all learn to speak, read and write fluently and confidently so are not disenfranchised or disadvantaged.
“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” Dr. Seuss
2. To cultivate a sense of belonging: In Dedicated Reading Time, students will read a wide variety of books from a wide variety of perspectives thus encouraging empathy, tolerance whilst opening up doors to the world around them, developing Cultural Capital.
“A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies . . . The man who never reads lives only one.” George R.R. Martin
3. To inspire a love of reading: we want all our students to develop a lifelong love of reading and nurture healthy reading habits. Texts will be carefully chosen to appeal to young people, open up discussion and debate. Research shows that young people who enjoy reading very much are nearly five times as likely to read above the expected level for their age compared with young people who do not enjoy reading at all and therefore are more likely to achieve in school. Children’s and Young People’s Reading Today, National Literacy Trust
“Books are a uniquely portable magic.” Stephen King.