Reading and Literacy

Ethos and culture

At Court Moor we are passionate about reading. We understand the importance of being a good reader, not just to access the curriculum, but as a socially connective and enjoyable experience for every student. We believe in the ‘Power of everyone’ and strive to ensure that every student, parent and staff member work together to immerse themselves in the enjoyment of reading and understand the far-reaching benefits of the mastery of reading.

In the quest to build capable readers, promoting independent, self-selected reading remains key. Creating ravenous, lifelong readers doesn’t just happen, it takes a schoolwide culture to help reach that goal.

Teachthought 2019

We recognise many young people don’t find reading enjoyable, rewarding or instructive because they don’t read fluently or because they can’t find texts that inspire, interest or challenge them. In some cases, students will not be able to fully access opportunities in the adult world because of their struggles with reading, making it an urgent moral imperative to address their barriers.

We have worked hard over the last three years to foster a culture of reading within the school and have many exciting initiatives and support programmes in place and being developed in order to ensure every student who leaves at the end of Year 11 feeling a sense of success.

Aims

We aim to ensure that all students leave Court Moor confident in their literacy, able to comprehend complex, academic texts and write maturely, cohesively and accurately.

Every member of staff takes responsibility for promoting high standards of literacy within the school and explicitly teach reading skills in lessons across the curriculum.

We are developing our philosophy around the five senses we want our students to enter the wider world with: a sense of adventure, a sense of purpose, a sense of success, a sense of empowerment and a sense of belonging. We are working to ensure that mastery of reading empowers students in all five areas.

Reading for pleasure

Reading for pleasure is possibly the single-most important activity your child can do to improve achievement in school. Research has shown that reading helps cognitive development; a recent IoE study revealed that students who read at home do ‘significantly better’ across the curriculum – including 9.9% better in maths – than students who don’t read. Linked to this is the fact that reading is the best way to improve vocabulary, essential for success in every subject.

Reading also has social and emotional benefits. It increases self-esteem and studies show that students who read are more empathetic. Growing up is tough -- reading can help young people explore complex problems from the safe fictional world of a book.

We are currently working on some exciting changes to the school Library, in response to years of in-depth research, discussion and listening to the student voice. We are aiming to make it an inspirational and motivational centre at the heart of the school.

We have a book recommendation scheme (Moor Than Books) which introduces new titles every half term in English lessons and are then shared in tutor time twice weekly.

We have a Parent and Staff Reading group, which has worked remotely through the last year but will be moving to half termly meetings to discuss award winning and exciting new releases.

We have a programme of reading mentorships, where students are supported weekly on a one to one and small group level with a member of staff.

We are also introducing Breakfast and Books with small groups of students who are in need of a little support and encouragement in their reading journey.

We have an English department Youtube channel, with book recommendations and chapter readings from staff across the school.

Reading for Learning

Academic reading stimulates, inspires, challenges and helps students decode and understand the world around them.

Ofsted highlight that: ‘Schools should establish a rigorous approach to reading in order to build confidence and enjoyment’.

At Court Moor we are dedicated to ensuring every student has the skills needed to access the curriculum with confidence. The development of reading skills are given a high priority in every subject and we ensure that a wide range of academic vocabulary is studied and utilised in all subjects across the curriculum.

We focus on regular reading of range of text types incorporated into curriculum to facilitate knowledge and understanding.

Staff understand the reading strengths and weaknesses of every student – and have a clear understanding of what to do with this knowledge. As a result of all of this, we aim to ensure attainment in every subject is significantly improved.

Parents

Its is important that we work collaboratively to ensure reading and literacy is regarded as important and meaningful for every student

How can you help?

  • Get involved- ask your child about the book they are reading, read it yourself, join in our discussions at the end of each half term
  • Get involved - suggest great books, ask for recommendations if your child has loved a book
  • Get involved - record a recommendation for the English department Youtube channel
  • Get involved – let us know of any community projects we could get involved in, we are keen to extend our reading passion further
  • Get involved – let us know if you have an occupation you are passionate about and would be prepared to read to small groups of our students as part of our upcoming ‘Secret Reader’ initiative

Reluctant-Readers-letter.pdf

Students

Moor Than Books - The Court Moor school book club, ask your English teacher for details

English Department Youtube channel

The Epic book app