Reading at Park Way

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you'll go.”

- Dr Seuss

Park Way’s Vision and rationale

Reading is placed at the heart of our bespoke curriculum. It is the gateway to knowledge, a doorway into the impossible and is an immersive activity. Research tells us that children who read for pleasure on a daily basis develop a wider vocabulary, greater general knowledge and a far better understanding of other cultures.

We believe that reading can open doors for our pupils and can help them to gain experiences, improve language and vocabulary skills and stimulate their imaginations. We strive to create confident readers who have good independent learning skills and develop a range of interests through reading.


Reading at Park Way

How we Teach Reading

At Park Way, we offer a well-structured and multifaceted approach to reading where learning is brought to life using a range of different teaching strategies. We strive to inspire the children and evoke excitement, allowing children to become immersed in a huge range of literature. Throughout the school, a love for reading is nurtured where high quality texts are used to develop language and writing skills, alongside reading skills. Children are provided with opportunities to develop their reading skills in directed Guided Reading sessions at least 3 times a week, as well as using opportunities across other curriculum areas.

As early readers in EYFS and Key Stage 1, we support reading in the classroom and at home by using phonetically decodable books alongside a whole school book banded reading scheme. This offers a wide variety of genres to develop reading skills and a pleasure for books which is continued into Year 2 as appropriate. In Key Stage 2, the book banded reading scheme continues and provides consistent progression for all readers. Children are encouraged to become independent readers, discovering favourite authors amongst the well-stocked shelves in the school library and their own classrooms.



At Park Way we use Read, Write, Inc. (RWI), a synthetic phonics programme, to teach our children phonics and ultimately how to read, write and spell.  This is a whole school approach which begins with the basic sounds and letter formations and moves to more complex sounds and spellings linked with reading and comprehension.  Children in the Early Years and Key Stage 1 learn their phonics hand in hand with learning to read.  Children with difficulties reading further up the school, access the programme in order to fill the gaps in their learning and enable them to make progress in line with their peers.  This method of phonics teaching is both systematic and repetitive in order to imbed the learning while also being entertaining and fun for all the children.  During RWI sessions, all children are grouped appropriately into smaller, working groups of pupils with similar phonic understanding.

For further information visit the Read Write Inc Website.

Park Way’s Love for Reading

We are a school that pride's itself in providing as many opportunities as possible for our pupils to enjoy reading and find a simple pleasure in it. 

Author visits

We strive to provide opportunities for our children to develop a love for reading and regularly invite authors to Park Way who delivered amazing workshops and signed books for the children. It has been a real pleasure to invite authors in from all over the county to interact and engage with the children following on from a lengthy absence due to COVID. This year we welcomed Matt Brown and Steve Clifford who introduced our young authors to amazing characters and helped them to create some of their own too! For World Book Week, KS2 also had amazing and villainous workshops from Clare Povey who showed our pupils the fun of creating their own 'bag guys' and Elisa Peacock to KS1 who helped them to think of creative ways to design their own characters in stories through chatterboxes! 

Ready, Steady Read competition

Park Way pupils took part in a Ready, Steady Read competition in collaboration with Usbourne books. Each pupil challenged themselves to read for a certain number of minutes over 2 weeks and then set off with their sponsorship forms to see if they could accomplish their challenge. Unsurprisingly, Park Way is full of outstanding readers as we raised an amazing £1058! This is an amount to be proud of and just demonstrates how we are a school who loves reading. Supported by Usborne books, we now have just under £1700 to spend on new books for our classrooms and library!


World Book Day! 

What an amazing day and week we had! Park Way is full of outstanding readers that too full advantage of the chance to dress us as our favourite characters and get into the spirit of reading all together again after the lockdown period! The costumes were marvellous, and you all deserve a huge round of applause for taking part and dressing up as your favourite book characters :) It was amazing to see such fabulous costumes with so many linking to classic tales which was our theme for this year's World Book Day. Each class selected a classic novel to study with some outstanding pieces of learning being produced around it!

Texts we love!

There are so many fantastic books for you and your child to explore together at home! These are just some of our favourites that we recommend:

Texts we like in EYFS

Texts we like in Year 1

Texts we like in year 2

Texts we like in year 3

Texts we like in year 4

Texts we like in year 5

Texts we like in year 6

Recommended Reading

Every parent has a vital role to play when helping their child to learn to read and find pleasure in it.

Research shows that the more you read with your child, the more impact it has on their development and the more successful their future will become. 

So below are links to '50 of the most recommended books to read' for each year group: 

Books for EYFS 

Books for year 1 

Books for year 2 

Books for year 3 

Books for year 4 

Books for year 5 

Books for year 6


Parental guides for supporting your child at home

At Park Way, we know how important it is for there to be a strong support network for your child's development both at home and at school. 

It is therefore essential that a partnership between school and home is establish to support your child's development of reading. 

Below you will find parental guides to help support your child when reading at home: 

Parental guide for EYFS 

Parental guide for year 1 and 2

Parental guide for year 3 and 4 

Parental guide for year 5 and 6

Reading for Pleasure

At Park Way, we believe that reading is fundamental for life beyond school but we also want our students to go a step beyond this and develop a passion for reading for pleasure. Time is given for partner classes to meet and share their favourite stories allowing our children of all ages to share with each other the enjoyment that comes from a good book!


Celebrities share our love for Reading!

Reading is something that we can all enjoy and our celebrity friends think so too! Click on any of the links below to watch some of our favourite celebrities reading some of our favourite books:

Chris Pine reads 'Clark the Shark' 

Betty White reads 'Harry the Dirty Dog' 

Chris O'Dowd reads 'Arnie the Doughnut'

Kristen Bell reads 'Quackenstein Hatches a Family'

Elijah Wood reads 'Me and my Cat'

Ernest Borgnine reads 'The Rainbow Fish' 

Reading at home

Below are some links to free e-books if you run out of books at home:

Park Way Reading Challenge

As you all know, Park Way is a school full of outstanding readers! Your resilience for taking your learning to an online platform just shows that nothing can stop us from being the best learners we can be. This term, Miss Beamish is setting you a reading challenge to complete at home. Your class teachers will have uploaded the challenge to your class web page and mentioned it this week in your live lessons. Reading is crucial for our development, is a fun and engaging activity to be doing at home and in the present climate, is a great escape into the imagination! The task couldn't be simpler or more fun! All you have to do to take part is date each reading task as you complete them and once you are finished, send your reading challenge to Everyone who takes part will have their name put into a hat and the first 3 names pulled out will receive a prize in the post! 

Reading Challenge Task Sheet


Parental engagement 

At Park Way, we understand that a reading for pleasure culture comes not only from school, but from home. We host events throughout the year where we invite parents in to take part in our love for reading and take time out of their own busy schedules to pick up a book and escape! 

Our most recent event was held in July 2022 where we had a bedtime stories event for KS1 parents. Both parents and children donned their best pyjamas, bought their favourite cuddly toys and found themselves engrossed in storytelling, blankets and hide away areas where books take on a whole new meaning! Miss Beamish, our literacy lead and collector of stories stood centre stage, reading one of her favourite picture books to the audience and then read to different groups of avid listeners, all of whom loved every minute.