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Downside Primary School



Early Reading

In Reception, one of the most important skills children will learn is how to read. At Downside, we use the Phonics scheme Read Write Inc.

Click HERE to learn more about the teaching of Phonics.

Reading lessons

Through reading lessons, children are exposed to a range of high-quality fiction, non-fiction and poetry texts.
Click below for an overview of those studied in each year group.

Click HERE – long term plan – EYFS and KS1

Click HERE – long term plan – KS2

Reading Prefects

This year’s reading prefects have been tasked with helping to promote reading for pleasure across the school.

Click HERE to meet them!

Our libraries

At Downside, we are lucky enough to have two incredible libraries: one for KS1 and the other for KS2. Each class has a weekly 30 minute library slot where they can return and take out new books. Children are able to borrow a book for a 2 week period.

Click HERE to learn more.

Reading at Home

All year groups regularly take reading books home. These books are age appropriate and are matched to their reading level. Please try to read as often as possible with your child.

Some year groups use their Open Classrooms as an opportunity to encourage you to read with your child – please try to attend these sessions as often as possible.

Mrs Garrett has started a Family Learning class with some Year 1 parents which focuses on enjoying books and supporting children with their reading – we will let you know when we are starting another course.

Recommended Reads

Please find below a list, with links, of recommended texts for each year group. 
We have many of these titles in school for children to access either in classroom reading corners or the libraries

Year R Year 1 Year 2 Year 3
Year 4 Year 5 Year 6

Useful websites for reading

EYFS – Phonics Play

EYFS – Mr T’s Phonics

EYFS – Oxford Owl

Key Stage 1
KS1 – Oxford Owl

KS1 – Reading Eggs

Key Stage 2 
KS2 – Reading Eggs

Phonics and Spelling

Phonics Information

At Downside Primary, we follow the Read Write Inc scheme for Phonics. 

This starts in Reception and children remain on the programme until they complete the scheme in Year 2. Early reading, spelling and handwriting are taught through daily Speed Sounds lessons.

We will assign Read Write Inc books online that children can practise reading at home. They start with simple ‘sound blending books’ and move on to the coloured books, which will match the sounds that they have learnt in school. 


 Read, Write Inc Lessons 

Children are taught to read and write letters using special rhymes.


 Then we practise reading by sounding out each letter in a word.


 How can you help your child?

  • Spend time supporting your child with their phonics homework - check which sounds they know and which sounds they need more practise with.
  • If they are struggling spend a few minutes each day recapping the sounds they have already learnt - remember they are in their Read Write Inc phonics books.
  • Practise writing the sounds.
  • Practise reading and writing ‘cvc’ words- please only get them to read and write words with the sounds they have already learnt.
  • Practise recognising tricky words.
  • Read their online phonics book with them, to improve their blending skills.

Find out more:

Ruth Miskin Parents’ Page:http://www.ruthmiskin.com/en/parents/

Ruth Miskin Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/miskin.education