In EYFS and Key Stage 1, an understanding of phonics is taught through multisensory, engaging, discrete sessions of 20 minutes per day. Phonics sessions are well matched to children’s needs. Teachers plan using ‘Letters and Sounds’ (DFES, Primary National Strategy 2007). Phonics continues to be taught In Key Stage 2, for those children who need it, either through whole class sessions or small group work by well trained teaching support staff. Children are given opportunities to apply their understanding of phonics during Guided Reading sessions and through independent writing tasks.

Our pupils will benefit from:

  • A daily phonics session, based on a model of review, introduction of new learning, practice and applying;
  • Focused directed teaching involving oral and written practice of letters and sounds;
  • A variety of teaching methods, including demonstration, modelling, games, singing and other practical activities.
  • Repetition and teaching of ‘tricky’ words.


Reading is a central part of our culture at Garstang Community Primary School and we work hard to develop a love of reading amongst our pupils. Children have the opportunity to take part in engaging and enjoyable shared, group and independent reading activities through the daily English lesson and through Reading Workshop sessions. During these sessions, which are led by well trained teachers and TAs, our pupils are encouraged to read for pleasure.

Reading mentors are used in order to maximise the opportunities for children to read and discuss their reading. Whole novels are shared in classes. Our pupils have access to a wide range of exciting, inspiring texts through our well stocked library and class reading books.

Our pupils are given the opportunity to develop decoding and literal comprehension skills before working on high order reading skills. During guided reading sessions, our skilled teachers nurture a love of reading while making rigorous and ongoing assessments of our pupils’ progress. Our staff are skilled at the early identification of at-risk children who struggle to develop early reading skills. At such times, additional support is put in place. Our pupils are made aware of their own progress and development as a reader.

We work closely with parents and offer support and guidance to help them work with their children at home. We aim to develop reading outside the classroom through theatre visits, book week activities, visiting storytellers and through extra-curricular activities such as our Bedtime Story Night for EYFS and KS1 pupils and through our Campfire Story Night for KS2 pupils. We work closely with our PTA who share our vision and fully support us in our desire to provide our pupils with exciting, quality texts.

In EYFS and Key Stage 1, pupils follow our book-banded reading scheme.  Our banded books are drawn from a range of published schemes (including Collins Big Cat, Bug Club, Project X and Floppy’s Phonics) and we look to continually update and improve our provision. Parents are asked to read with their children daily and record their observations and comments in their child’s Reading Diary, provided by the school. This is monitored carefully by class teachers. At the beginning of the year in EYFS, pupils take home one book which is changed twice per week. By the end of EYFS and throughout the rest of Key Stage 1, pupils are given two books to read, twice per week.  This ensures that our pupils are given regular practice and make rapid progress through the reading stages.

In Year 3, pupils who need to, continue on the Book Banded scheme but are encouraged to move onto free choice.  In Year 3, we have a class library with engaging, age appropriate books which enable the children to develop skills in choosing their own books.  From Year 4 onwards, pupils choose from our larger, school library collection.  

However, we do have a selection of Project X books available for Key Stage 2 pupils who need longer to build their skills using book bands.  Project X are high interest/lower reading level books.  

Year 6 Librarians