We encourage children to read from the very beginning. We aim to share an enjoyment of language, both spoken and written, and to develop the ability to communicate in speech and writing. Children are surrounded by opportunities for reading;  books, pictures, and displays encourage their interest in the written word.

At the start of the year, we assess children's reading levels and encourage children to choose a leveled book that appeals to them to start them on their reading journey.  We have invested substantially in a new, whole-school resource, Oxford Reading Tree,  which not only supports all children across the school but enables teachers to provide small focused interventions for children who are finding reading a bit tricky. Children are encouraged to read independently for pleasure and for information and to be critical of what they read. 

'It’s good to learn to read and write as they are both really important.' Tiffany (Year 3)


Written work is encouraged for a variety of purposes e.g. poetry, imaginative prose, reporting, recording etc. We give full emphasis to basic skills, such as spelling, punctuation, handwriting, and the development of study skills.

'I really like doing English with other subjects like Science for our writing.' Sammy (Year 2)

'I like English lessons a lot. We get to write stories using plot points. I like writing stories.'  James (Year 4)

'I like non-fiction writing. I prefer it. I really enjoy writing newspaper reports.' Alex (Year 5)

'I like learning new things. I like using the reading VIPERS, I find the letters really help me to learn.' Evie (Year 6)


The children are introduced to sounds (phonics) which are the building blocks for reading and spelling.  There will be phonics work each day in Infant classes. We follow the Twinkl phonics program.

'I like phonics the best. We learn our sounds and it helps us learn to read.' Kitty (year R)

Drama, Speaking & Listening

Children are taught to listen and speak in a range of situations. They take part in group and class discussions. Drama techniques are used to help bring lessons alive. Children are also given opportunities to take part in school productions and watch professional performances.

Mariteau Class - Macbeth 2023



Mariteau Class - The Tempest 2022



Mariteau Class - A Midsummer Night's Dream 2021



'I like drama and when we act out plays to the class.' David (Year 5)

Our English Subject Leader is Mr. Richard Breeds.

Reading Dogs Skills.pdfVIPERS KS2 Skills.pdf

Reading & Writing Intents

Please click on the documents to read our Reading and Writing intents.

Reading at St Thomas'.pdfWriting at St Thomas'.pdf

Progression in Reading & Writing

Please click on the documents to see how children progress in Reading & Writing. 

Progression in Reading.pdf

Progression in Writing.pdf



Useful websites & knowledge organisers

Here you can find links to useful websites as well as knowledge organisers which you can download.