Leaders have rightly prioritised reading. They are determined that all pupils should learn to read and enjoy books. They closely monitor the quality and consistency of how well reading is taught. The curriculum is supported by high quality texts and books of different genres.  Ofsted 2023

The Power of Reading

'Of all the subjects taught in school, reading is first among equals - the most singular in importance because all others rely on it.
Excellence in almost any academic subject requires strong reading.'
Reading Reconsidered, 2016

Come and travel the world with a book...

National Curriculum - English programmes of study

English has a pre-eminent place in education and in society. A high-quality education in English will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others, and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. Through reading in particular, pupils have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Literature, especially, plays a key role in such development. Reading also enables pupils both to acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know. All the skills of language are essential to participating fully as a member of society; pupils who do not learn to speak, read and write fluently and confidently are effectively disenfranchised.

Reading and Phonics information 

At Eckington First School, we believe that English is a significant life skill and that the development of strong learning foundations will enable our children to listen, speak, read and write confidently throughout their school career and on into adult life. We believe that it is important to foster an enthusiasm for, and appreciation of, the different strands of literacy in a  broad, cross-curricular and real-life sense at all stages throughout the school.


 Bug Club Phonics sound flash cards: 

Phase 2 

Phase 3

Phase 4

Phase 5

Phonics progression at Eckington

Whole Class Reading in KS1: Children experience reading teaching as a whole class. We look at fiction, non-fiction and poetry whilst teaching a range of reading skills.
What is more, they also experience being read to by an adult as well as reading for pleasure. Children also experience books that are slightly more challenging thus exposing them to a wide range of genre, themes and vocabulary.

Whole Class Reading in KS2: Whole class reading continues into Key Stage Two. Children read a rich, quality text in depth. They read to establish meaning and read to analyse meaning. The books are methodically chosen to ensure challenge of all abilities, instil a love of reading and develop breadth and depth of understanding in other curriculum areas.


Reading corners: Every classroom includes resources enabling for pupils to read for pleasure. Reading corners, cushions, blankets, toys, promps and so much more is used to create a pleasurable, comfortable experience that aims to maximise the enjoyment of the reading process.


At Eckington First School, we strive to promote the love of reading within our children. To be a fluent reader is not only a necessary life skill, but one of life’s greatest pleasures. Books are a gateway for children and adults to explore new worlds, learn about the past, spark imaginations and develop critical thinking skills.

Children should learn that reading is also a way to relax therefore an important mental health tool.

To ensure our children read a rich variety of books and an opportunity to learn about different writers and genres, we have launched Author of the Month. Each month is dedicated to a different author.

Our author of the month, is displayed and promoted in our school library, where children are able to borrow books written by the author.


Some of our Authors of the month...

Shirley Hughes - Shirley Hughes reads Dogger

Zanib Mian

Jacqueline Wilson

Malorie Blackman

Oliver Jeffers

Natha Bryon

Onjali Q. Raúf

Ibtihaj Muhammad

Michael Morporgo

Tom Fletcher

Joshua Seigal

Alesha Dixon

Cressida Cowell

Philip Pullman

Dick King-Smith

Book Talk
Reading with your child can support them in developing a love of reading. The OU have come up with guides and videos to support parents with this.
Book Chat Guide 
Book Chat Poster


Reading Aloud
Stories online for children aged 3-5
Stories online for children aged 5-7
Stories online for children aged 7-9
Stories online for children aged 9-11

Picture Books
Year 1 picture books about fear and worry
Year 1 picture books promoting diversity


High Quality texts
We truly believe in the power of a rich, high quality text.
If you would like some suggestions then please see the following lists...come and get hooked on a book!

Suggested Texts for Pre-school and Nursery

Suggested Texts for Reception Pupils

Suggested Texts for Year 1 Pupils

Suggested Texts for Year 2 Pupils

Suggested Texts for Year 3 Pupils

Suggested Texts for Year 4 Pupils

Suggested Texts for Year 5 Pupils


For more book lists including 'Books of the Month', 'Ones to Watch' as well as poetry and magazine subscription suggestions head here:

Books for topics: Reading for Pleasure

The Power of Reading at Eckington

To ensure all pupils make speedy progress in phonics and reading, we start teaching phonics in Nursery/Reception. We use Bug Club Phonics to teach our children the fundamental phonic skills to create able readers and writers, which ensures children build on their growing knowledge of the alphabetic code, mastering phonics to read and spell as they move through school.


Pupils’ progress in reading is dependent upon both the speedy working out of the pronunciation of unfamiliar printed words (decoding) and the speedy recognition of familiar printed words. All teachers have the highest expectation that children will become proficient readers by the end of Key Stage 1 through our systematic, consistent implementation of Bug Club Phonics  programme. 

The intent behind our phonics approach is to: 

  • Deliver a validated high-quality systematic synthetic phonics programme of proven effectiveness is followed with rigour and fidelity so that children are taught consistently to use phonics as the route to reading unknown words. 
  • Ensure pace of the phonics programme is maintained so that children become fluent, independent readers by the end of year 1.  
  • Ensure children’s reading books show a cumulative progression in phonics knowledge that match the grapheme-phoneme correspondences they know to support decoding skills.  

Phonics is implemented by: 

  • Ensuring the teaching of phonics is systematic and consistent across school.
  • Ensuring lessons are always taught at a fast pace to ensure children are highly engaged.
  • Ensuirng the teaching structure is progressive, terminology and resources are consistent.
  • Ensuring the teaching extends beyond the ‘dedicated time’ and is applied and reinforced when appropriate throughout the day to ensure children 'keep up' with their peers. .
  • Ensuring the teaching of the programme is not necessarily limited to just phonic sessions and is evident across all curriculum areas and in EYFS/KS1 provision.  
  • Ensuring children’s decodable reading books are carefully matched to their phonic knowledge and which do not require use of alternative strategies. These books are organised in the given sequence of the Bug Club phonics programme to ensure the books are fully decodable at the child’s current level to aid fluency and confidence.   
  • Teachers suporting parents to know how best to support their childr in learning sounds through our phonics workshops and information videos throughout the year. 

Phonics is taught in a whole class approach. Any gaps in knowledge are addressed that day through 5-minute daily interventions (additional to whole class phonics sessions) from the start of the year in order for children to ‘keep up’ with their peers. Therefore, the children then move through the phase groups as one group together. Regular progress meetings are held with teachers to monitor the children making slowest progress or who are working under expected levels (lower 20%), to ensure they are swiftly identified and  additional support is provided to enable them to keep up. 

The impact of our consistent and systematic teaching of our phonics programme is for all children to become fluent readers by the age of KS1. 


Reading For Pleasure

Reading for pleasure opens new worlds for children. It gives them the opportunity to use their imagination to explore new ideas, visit new places and meet new characters.

A really useful website to help you find the perfect book for your child is:

Love Reading For Kids

The site provides you with book recommendations for different types of books/readers. 


How to support your child at home?

Even once children are fluent readers, they still benefit from reading out loud or being read to.  When sharing books with your child, discuss the book you are reading. Here are some suggestions of questions you could ask, answer or discuss.


What has happened in the story so far?

What do you think will happen next?

Who is your favourite character? Why?

Who is the character you like least? Why?

Do you think the author intended you to like / dislike this character? How do you know?

Does your opinion of this character change during the story? How? Why?

Find two things the author wrote about this character that made him / her likeable?

If you met one of the characters from the story, what would you say to him / her?

Which part of the story is your favourite / least favourite? Why?

Would you change any part of the story? How?

Would you change any of the characters? How?

Which part of the story was the funniest/scariest/ saddest/ happiest? Find some evidence in the

text to support your opinion.

What is the purpose of this book? How do you know?

Why is this page laid out in this way? Could you improve it?

Pick three favourite words or phrases from this chapter. Can you explain why you chose them?

Did this book make you laugh? Can you explain what was funny and why?

Have you read anything else by this author? Is anything similar?

Does this book remind you of anything else? How?

When do you think this book was written? How do you know? Does it matter? What would it be like

if it was written now?

Do you think the title of the book is appropriate? What would you have called it?

What is the genre of the book: sci-fi, mystery, historical, fantasy, adventure, horror, comedy? What

are the features that make you think this?

Find two sentences which describe the setting.

Is the plot fast or slow moving? Find some evidence in the text, which supports your view.

If the author had included another paragraph before the story started what do you think it would


Would you like to read another book by this author? Why/ why not?


Of course, it doesn’t have to be you asking the questions. Why not turn the tables and let your child

ask you about your reading material?

The greatest encouragement for your child is to see you - their most influential role model - reading.

World Book Day 2023

A VERY BIG THANK YOU to everyone for ‘Dressing a fruit or vegetable’, to celebrate World Book Day.

What sheer creativity we have. I hope I haven't created a fruit and vegetable shortage in Eckington! The children took turns showing their character to the rest of the school. 

For extra fun, we used ChatterPix, which is an app to bring our character to life.The children loved doing this!

Our mission is to promote reading for pleasure. Reading for pleasure opens up new worlds for children. It gives them the opportunity to use their imagination to explore new ideas, visit new places and meet new characters.



Check out our...chattering ChatterPix

World Book Day 2022

We celebrated world book day by dressing up as our favourite characters and taking part in lots of exciting activities. 

Here is Class 3's performance of Roger McGough's Poetry Pie


Today we had a representative from Worcestershire Libraries come and talk to us about this year’s Summer Reading Challenge called ‘Gadgeteers’.

Science is all around you! What do you love doing? Are you a brilliant baker? Or a mega music fan? Are you the tech wizard amongst your friends? Join the Gadgeteers for the Summer Reading Challenge to discover the amazing science and innovation behind the world around you, including some of your favourite things! The Summer Reading Challenge combines FREE access to books with fun, creative activities during the summer holidays. Throughout the Challenge, library staff and young volunteers support the children, helping them to discover new authors and illustrators and to explore a wide range of different types of books and ways of reading. For more information please look on our letters page! Keep Reading

Mrs Bishop

Mrs Bishop’s Extreme Summer Reading Challenge  

I am challenging you to find the most unusual place you can think of to read a book this summer. This could be anywhere weird or wonderful, anywhere in the world! From sitting on a paddleboard, to dressed as a monkey at the zoo, to standing on your head. The possibilities are endless! Through this reading initiative, I am aiming to inspire a lifelong love of reading for children and adults of all ages. Think about different, exciting, fun and SAFE places you can enjoy a book. For more information pleaase look on our letters page!

Keep Reading!