Communication, language and literacy sit at the heart of our curriculum design throughout Nursery. Early language development is established through daily stories and rhymes. Children experience quality reading, story, rhyme, talk and play on a daily basis. This is carefully planned within directed teacher-led sessions and in our continuous provision.
Literacy in the early years includes talking about books, print in the environment, early mark making and writing, as well as sharing books and reading. Reading is central to our ability to understand, interpret and communicate with one another and to be ready to start reading, children need to have a variety of skills in place. These early reading skills include matching, rhyming, awareness of phonics and the skills associated with language development such as listening, attention, alliteration and sound discrimination.
We recognise that learning to read is a crucial part of children’s development and one which will support all future learning. As teachers we are in the privileged position to be able to teach children the skills required for reading and to instil a love for reading.
In Transition there is a strong emphasis on the acquisition of key literacy skills. Our aim is to ensure children become independent readers who love books and value them as an important part of their lives. In Literacy we use a multi-sensory approach including the teaching of phonics and key word recognition. The children have access to a wide variety of age-appropriate reading materials to aid development. We encourage a love of literature through classroom libraries with a range of picture and information books, weekly trips to Finsbury Library and regular story sessions.
We understand that all children develop at different rates, and so the teaching is very personalised to ensure that all children gain real fluency in reading. Towards the end of their time in Transition, we consolidate the foundations established and continue to build upon these in ways which extend and enrich the learning opportunities of the children.
From reading, developing vocabulary and learning about authors, to story writing, poetry, instructional and factual writing, we aim to help children develop their literacy skills in an enjoyable way, and help to instil a love of literature. Comprehension, punctuation and grammar are important elements in their learning too and there is an expectation that children will begin to read for pleasure over sustained periods of time, whilst also being able to tackle a range of text types and locate relevant information in them. Opportunities to read and develop reading skills occur throughout the day, as the children research topics, share literature, read prescribed texts and read for their own enjoyment.
There is a weekly ‘Book Club’ in which children read aloud to others, and are taught how to discuss texts, and understand a book´s themes and structure so as to develop a deeper understanding of what they are reading. This promotes a love of literature and develops comprehension skills.