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Reading in Reception

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by Msz, Aug 30, 2010.

  1. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    In reception we try to do our "FIVE A DAY" reading stories to the children and hear children read 1-1 as often as possible (when they first get a reading book there are few words so it takes less time but as the books have more words they may not be heard every day) I don't do guided reading groups in reception.
  2. I start guided reading with some children staright away depending on their phonics ability. With others we start after the first half term (at the latest) as a lot of the books we use are very simple, repertive and it is about the children experiencing books and how to handle, find titles etc. I also find my reading groups change very regularly as the children progress at very different speeds. We do 1:1 only with our struggling readers.
    I do a shared text with the children each day to model early reading. Sometimes your group may need extra phonics reinforcement it will depend upon your class.
    Guided reading should not be the children taking it in turns reading a page each but reading the book independently themselves with adult support where necessary no matter what year group they are in.
    You will need to judge it on your classes ability and phonics levels in my school the majority of the children are 'ready to read and experience books' but not every child will fit into that box.
  3. Has anyone else found this difficult in reception? I've always found they need lots of support in actually attempting to read. Very few will do it independently. I have consistently found it easier and more productive to read around the group - teaching the children how to follow the text as we go along. They become more independent gradually with encouragement.
  4. Never said it was easy but as the first part of guided reading is about modelling the text and looking at words the children may need to know they pick up the idea quite quickly when using texts with lots of repetition. Have found that children are not interested in listening when it is not their turn to read it is the case at our school.
    Can I also say DO NOT use this method if being observed by OFSTED as I know a colleague in school that was graded as unsatisfactory for it during her lesson observation.
  5. I am quite interested about this idea of each child reading independently in group reading time. We have been told at our school that this is the way we should be doing it. I have some reservations about it.
    I do guided reading with most children from pretty early on in the year and that along with our phonics sessions works really well.
    I naturally go to some independent reading towards the end of the year, or earlier if the children are capable, but not for the whole book.
    During guided reading I love to talk about the pictures and the story line, guessing what may happen in the story etc. I think these things work really well in group discussion situations where we all read the book at the same time.
    Rarely have the problem of children not listening to the others in the group.
    If I ask the children to read independently in a group and they are not ready they tend to rush through the book guessing at the sentences, not even using phonics that they do know.

  6. I wonder if there was more to this 'unsatisfactory' assessment than the fact that she read round the group in guided reading. I would certainly challenge the idea that it is good practice to use a method which, having been tried, has been found to be unsuccessful. Maybe the OFSTED inspection was at the end of the year, when children are generally more able to cope with the idea of reading indpendently and the inspector was aware of this.
    If children are not listening when it is not their turn I think it unlikely that they are reading independently when not being watched. It's possible to get children interested in finding words, graphemes etc. when another group member is reading which overcomes the "It's not my turn so I'll look at the ceiling" syndrome.

  7. Thank you for all your replies to this thread. So, we are now 3 weeks into the term and I have asked a few more questions about reading in Reception. The rest of the team don't believe that we should be teaching 'how to read' in Reception, just for the children to get a love for books. I can agree with the love for books statement, but find it hard that we are doing nothing to help them learn to read. Parents are becoming anxious about this too. Each day we have to have 10 minutes of quiet reading. However, as you can imagine, the children get quite bored during this as they choose a book and look at the pictures, and turn the pages and then loose interest very quickly. I have actually found in the last few weeks that this is putting them off books, and a lot of them groan when it is quiet reading time - no matter how much I try to jazz it up. On Friday I had had enough and decided I would read stories to the children in this time instead (which apparently we shouldn't be doing until the end of the day according to my team leader).
    I ended up speaking to SLT and they have said that maybe we could introduce guided reading in May and use it as an excuse for transition. But I honestly don't think I can wait until May - these children are already being put off books and I have had quite a few come to me and said they want to learn to read! We will start phonics (eventually.......yet another thing I am not overly happy with - we won't start phonics until Xmas as apparently they aren't ready, despite 90% of them having done a little phonics at nursery and in my opinion are definitely ready) and this will help them with a few sight words and to help with decoding.
    Any ideas on how I can make books exciting for these childrren again? I read to them as often as I can - using voices and being very enthuastic. I even tried picking up a book and reading it myself to show that I love reading. We watch actors reading stories online and watch stories on Espresso etc. Any ideas would be great, or opinions!! Thanks
  8. This is absurd!!!!
    So babies should be looking at books, not having storied read to them?? ggggrrrrrr
    ......or have I completely misunderstood, and they have stories read to them at other times?
    My reception children have just been given book-bags with sharing books, we're starting phonics next week (RWI), and we start them on our reading scheme as soon as we think they can cope with it, and it'll develop their reading (and definitely not before they're ready!) The children are heard every day if they don't read at home, and at least 3 times per week if they do. We still see this as a very important part of a child's development, and (on the whole) they absolutely love it! Not saying we're perfect, and I'm always looking for ways to develop our scheme, but it works for us!
  9. I'm afraid that your last post has left me speechless on several fronts! Not our job to teach them how to read in Reception!!!!! Guided reading in May!!! Can only read stories to them at the end of the day!!!! In my school I wouldn't have a job by May!!! I expect at least half my class would be reading by Christmas! We do Sounds Write and all but the youngest do a short session daily and this includes whiteboards/pens/writing letters and cvc words...one or two will probably have a book to read at home next week. We aim to hear them read 2/3 times aweek..one to one and I don't do guided reading at all. teaching them how to read is one of the biggest parts of my job....thank God!
  10. Leapyearbaby64

    Leapyearbaby64 New commenter

    Funnily enough, when I had my parent presentation in July, I said that I thought one of my "main jobs" was to teach the children how to read! It's the bit I love the most about reception. We have quiet reading in our school too, but I use the time for doing additional phonics work with half the class while my TA reads a story to the others. Obviously this will change as the year progresses. My class aren't having reading books until they can decode. They take home stories from the book box to share with their parents.
  11. You would be hung drawn and quartered in our school if you didn't start till may not just by parents but SMT and Y1 teachers! I had parents asking for a reading book first day in school (i didn't give one but that is what our parents expect).
    As Phase 1 phonics starts in nursery can you not just start doing it anyway and I would do what you feel is best- and then prove to other staff it is working. We have phonics 4x a week (3 ability groups) guided reading x2 and extra phonics in smaller groups planned for those who need it,
    Do you get set targets for your kids by the head or authority to get to a certain level and if so could you argue you need to start reading in order to meet targets?
  12. I am so glad you all agree with me. I really don't understand it, and I don't know where the views of our Reception class have come from (although I guess it would be from a very lazy teamleader!). The children take a book home to share with parents each day, but I would say only a very small minority actually read it.
    We have NO decodable books in my classroom. They have lots of books to look at such as The Gruffalo etc, but I would not expect them to be able to read that.
    I don't think we have to set targets - at least, my team leader hasn't said anything about doing that yet. We have assessed them on their sounds, numbers, writing thier name, pencil grip etc but that is all.
    I have been thinking about it a lot this week, and don't think I can continue this year without helping these children. This week we are only doing 1 directed activity (which the TAs are doing - don't ask...yet another thing I keep complaining about) so apart from observing the children and helping them/scafolding their play, I was thinking I could use some time to give them a jump start. I think I will start a bit of phonics teaching, but not tell the rest of the team, and try and find some easy books from Y1/2 that I could read with a few of them. I have also decided to do Phase 1 phonics in our circle times for this week - the children aren't bad at their speaking and listening, rhyming etc as they have been doing it in Nursery.
    We use Jolly Phonics alongside Letters and Sounds, so at this stage in the year do you just introduce a few sounds (SATPIN) each week? I only have 1 child in my class who already knows all her sounds, the rest just know 1 or 2 so not sure how best to start! Wish I wasn't so new to Reception and had more confidence to fight my corner....but will keep trying!
  13. you are right to make a start...the children won't learn to recognise/hear sounds if you don't expose them to them...and teach them! We have done satpin and all the cvc words you can make with them.and are moving on to more letters every week..I use the picture cards that came with the PIPs stuff many years ago for lots of listening/hearing activities. we use whiteboards and pens to practise writing letters and cvc words as well as our names..and fans with letters on to do 'show me' activities...I have cards with Letters and sounds words on one side and pictures on the other side..I show the word and they sound in their heads and put hand up if they can say what it is...etc etc etc You can't wait for all to recognise all letters..pace and vigour!!! Good luck but please do something to move these children forward!!
  14. Thank you! I have now decided I will do a week of Phase 1 (to keep the team happy and tick that box, and use this week to start planning) and then from next Monday i will start teaching the sounds. I will have to do this whole class and won't be able to do group work on it as the rest of the team will not be happy with this. However, I will bring it up again this week!

  15. geniegirl - if you would like some emergency, cumulative, decodable sentences and text to fit in with your Jolly Phonics, please email me (no charge) debbie@phonicsinternational.com .
  16. I am totally shocked! I hope you are getting somewhere with phonics and reading. Look at the National Strategies Early Reading Curriculum CPD Resource DVD. Shove it under the noses of the rest of the team too!!

    ref 00053-2008DVD-EN

    good luck!
  17. Thank you for all your help. I will order that DVD.
    As a quick update - I have now started phase 2 phonics just for my class (the other classes have yet to start) and we have learnt the first 2 sets of sounds. We are also reading tricky words each day and starting to blend + segment (although some find this very hard, but I'm sure that is normal). It is still very hard as having to do most in secret, although they do know that I am doing 'little bits'.
    I have found a few easy, decodable, books for my higher ability from Y1 and so am trying to read with these children as often as possible.
    Still not happy about the situation, but am trying my best to give the best education to my class!
  18. mystery10

    mystery10 Occasional commenter

    Good luck with it - you sound like a great teacher. If it's any consolation, as a parent I have had to do undercover work to improve my children's reading at home. I'm not sure if they do as little as at your school, but all I can glean about reception is that they do on average one sound per week, starting part way through term one. The children who could read things like "The Cat in the Hat" by Dr. Seuss by the end of the Spring Term were doing so because they had learned at home. The parents are very careful to say they didn't do anything ....... the child just learned to read as if by magic. I asked for reading books in the summer term (as all we were given were either real books, or pre-readers with random sight words in, no sentences) and was told this was not possible and referred to the headteacher.
    What are your school's reading results like at the end of KS1?
    I often think that schools like this get by as the parents who care teach their children to read at home, leaving the teachers to rescue children in Year 1/2 who did not get taught at home. So some children do a lot better than they might as full effort from parents is secured from quite early on, and other children flounder as they haven't got this.
    So difficult when you are employed there. Have you any idea what their rationale is and if the headteacher approves of this approach? I don't know what to say, but you would be doing a lot of people a favour if you could get some parents to complain going up the chain if necessary - to reception teacher, then to literacy co-ordinator, then to headteacher, and then as an official complaint to headteacher and governors. I don't know how you would do this without risking yourself though as it may seem too coincidental that this happens in the same year that you have voiced your concerns.
    Are there some other great things going on in reception which would be sacrificed if more time was devoted to learning to read? (And write?)
    It would be great if the love of books theory worked, but it doesn't seem to be doing so does it?
  19. Msz

    Msz Established commenter

    I'm afraid we don't do guided reading in any year group
  20. teacherof30

    teacherof30 New commenter

    Well done :)

    For our guided reading, I have about half of the class now doing a traditional guided read once per week with an adult. I do have a massive range of skill in my class though! Each day an adult reads like this with one group.

    The other children will do other reading type activities e.g. looking at topic books, making words with magnets, reading simple sentences, sharing story books with an adult (if adult available!), sharing story books with each other, listening to stories on CDs. They also adore looking at anything non-fiction so I include this as often as possible.

    If you go on the devon website they have guided reading record sheets which outlines the type of things children should be doing for each book level. www.devonldp.org/do_download.asp?did=8246

    For guided writing, we have daily shared writing and each group will do a guided write at least once, more likely twice a week with an adult. For our lowest ability this may literally be saying a sentence and writing initial sounds, for the top group they will be writing a sentence with minimal support and trying to include punctuation. Guided writing may be a shared word map of ideas, or a shared sentence. The children do lots of labelling and drawing also.

    HTH - we have a very formal morning in EYFS this year. It has definitely improved the chidren's attainment, but it is exhausting and we will try to find a balance for the coming terms!

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