Heathlands recognises the importance of deaf pupils developing strong reading skills. This is essential for success in other areas of learning and for life. Learning the code of written language and acquiring literacy skills is fundamental to education and achievement.
In Middle School, Reading is incorporated throughout the school day in a cross curricular way. Teaching makes extensive use of the interactive screen displaying appropriately pitched written texts and visual teaching materials to support learning. English lessons emphasise the development of reading skills.
Additionally all Middle School students have at least 30 minutes dedicated reading time every day matched to their individual needs. Many will follow the ‘Accelerated Reader’ programme whilst other students use reading schemes such as the ‘Oxford Reading Tree’ or ‘Rapid Readers’. Middle School students are also encouraged to read at home, both their scheme books and for pleasure and information.
Within Middle School pupils learn to:
- Maintain positive attitudes to reading
- Develop their understanding of what they read (comprehension skills)
- Develop skills to ask and answer questions, draw inferences, predict what might happen and summarise the main ideas from text.
- Develop their vocabulary exploring the meaning of words in context
- Discuss and evaluate how authors use language.
- Retrieve, record and present information from non-fiction
- Participate in discussions about books that are read to them and those they can read for themselves, building on their own and others’ ideas.
- Explain and discuss their understanding of what they have read.
- Provide reasoned justifications for their views
- Distinguish between statements of fact and opinion
Accelerated Reader is a programme that encourages students to read for enjoyment. After reading each book students undertake motivational quizzes that assess comprehension. This information is collated by the computerised system to provide staff with ongoing analytical progress data. An interactive Reading Dashboard allows teachers to see how well students are performing at class, group and individual level. It brings together data from the Accelerated Reader and the Renaissance Star Reading assessment to allow teachers to diagnose problems and inform intervention programmes.
See weblink for example of analytical data provided: http://www.renlearn.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/renaissance-place-dashboard-screens.pdf