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At Burford School, we strive to develop a love of books and we encourage children to read for enjoyment across a range of genres. We believe learning to read is a life-long, continuous process.


Teaching focuses on developing pupils’ competencies in Reading.  Skilled word reading involves both the pronunciation of unfamiliar printed words (decoding) and the recognition of familiar printed words. Underpinning both, is the understanding that the letters on the page represent the sounds in spoken words. During the early teaching of reading, phonics teaching fulfils these aims. 


Good comprehension draws from linguistic knowledge (in particular of vocabulary and grammar) and on knowledge of the world. Comprehension skills develop through pupils’ experiences of high-quality discussion with the teacher and their peers, as well as from reading and discussing a range of books, stories, poems and non-fiction. All pupils are encouraged to read widely across both fiction and non-fiction to develop their knowledge of themselves and the world in which they live, to establish an appreciation and love of reading, and to gain knowledge across the curriculum. Reading widely and often increases pupils’ vocabulary because they encounter words they would rarely hear or use in everyday speech.


Reading also feeds pupils’ imagination and opens up a treasure-house of wonder and joy for curious young minds. It is essential that, by the end of their primary education, all pupils are able to read fluently, and with confidence, in any subject in order that they are fully prepared for their forthcoming secondary education.