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Reading Reading

“There is no such thing as a child who hates to read; there are only children who have not found the right book.”
― Frank Serafini

Here at The Kassia Academy we are aware of the importance of Literacy and its role in supporting learners to achieve their best. We understand that Literacy is a whole school ethos and should be embedded within all teaching opportunities throughout the school.

We do things differently HERE and that includes within Literacy. At The Kassia Academy we strongly believe there are a variety of approaches that contribute to the development of our student's literacy, all of which require a multi-approach where student, school and home all work together in partnership to achieve the success every child deserves.

We ingrain at least one the four pillars of learning into our every-day literacy:


Critical Thinking

Synthesising and making inferences.



Helping to increase understanding of the world around us and the people who live on it.



Impacting a variety of cognitive and linguistic ways, additionally providing meaningful listening.



Celebrating successes and reflecting on aspiring high.


What is Literacy?

Literacy is the ability to read, write, speak and listen in a way that lets us communicate effectively and make sense of the world.

At The Kassia Academy we focus on developing Literacy skills in reading, writing, speaking and listening to help us communicate effectively. Literacy can be both; academic with a subject specific focus or general communication based which is centred on the essential skills required for every day communication.


How do we support Literacy at The Kassia Academy?


Reading areas

Throughout the day, each student has the opportunity to pick up a book and take advantage of our cosy reading areas. Complete with interesting and age-appropriate fiction and non-fiction texts. Each term every student receives 1:1 Dedicated Reading Time with an experienced member of staff.


Reading with Henry

The Kassia Academy is also home to the lovely Henry the Cockapoo, our adorable and much-loved therapy dog. At times, students are able to take time out of lesson to read out loud to Henry. Studies have shown reading to dogs can boost confidence, improve self-esteem and encourage positive behaviour. In addition, Henry adores all of the attention and care the students show towards him!



At our Willows site we have the benefit of access to the Orford Livewire Library. Here students can loan a variety of books and resources

  “Literacy is the road to human progress and the means through which every man, woman and child can realize his or her full potential.”
― Kofi Annan

Within our curriculum and throughout our learning culture, we have developed a supportive and inclusive literacy programme which is outlined fully in our literacy policy. Key strategies of support include:

·       Bedrock 2023 onwards – We use a bespoke reading intervention programme that is tailored to each learner.

·       Modelling – All teaching and support staff model excellent literacy and are training in working specifically with SEND learners.

·       Bedrock Mapping 2023 onwards – Students engage with key vocabulary based on both subject and exam board.

·       Reading Intervention – Students work with both teacher and support staff to read a range of text types with the focus of both reading and conversational skill.

·       Guided reading – Weekly sessions of whole class reading that progress to more challenging texts throughout the year.

·       Read for Good 2023 onwards – Students are encouraged to read for pleasure through various text types.

·       National Literacy Trust – Continued membership with this charity that helps and supports schools and communities of disadvantaged children gain the literacy skills they need.

·       Educational Library Service Spring 2024 – A bespoke library service offering a range of resources including books, artefacts and workshops for SEND learners.


How can I support my child with Literacy outside of school?

There are several ways to support your child outside of school. Below are some ideas that could help shape and support the overall learning journey of your child.


“Reading can take you to places you have never been before”- Dr Seuss


What is Literacy?

The ability to read and write. Literacy covers the three key areas of reading, writing and speaking and listening.


“The man who does not read has no advantage over the man who cannot read.”
― Mark Twain


Why is literacy important?

We know that low literacy impacts a young person’s:

·        Success at school

·        Job opportunities and earnings

·        Physical health and mental wellbeing

·        Life expectancy


 “Reading is essential for those who seek to rise above the ordinary.”
― Jim Rohn



One of the most integral methods when helping your child to improve their literacy skills is by encouraging them to read. Here are 4 tips on how to encourage your child to read at home:

1) Create a love of reading

Find out what your child is currently excited about and if see they might like to read something about that for example, a recipe book or a TV magazine. It is easier to encourage reading on something that already interests them, and they are familiar with. Don't try to force your child to read as they will end up relating reading to feeling pressured.

2) Different formats

Reading is a habit, and as long as they're in the habit of picking up something to read, it doesn't really matter what or how they are reading. Allow your child to read on an electronic device as they might prefer this format, and many library services offer electronic copies of texts.

3) Books based on films and games

Many children find it challenging to choose a book. Ask your child to look for a book based on their favourite film, television show or game. Using books based on existing interests can really help children pick out what they might like to read and gain confidence in choosing books for themselves.

4) Talk about books!

Some people believe that reading can only be achieved independently, but reading can be a social activity. Read together by each reading a page at a time. Letting your child see you reading and talking together about what you have learnt shows them that you find reading enjoyable and valuable and makes it a social activity. Be open about your reading experiences and the benefits you get from reading.

Tip for GCSE students:

Keep adverts that come through the door and ask them to think about how the text is trying to persuade the reader. Reading the newspaper is great practice for the Paper 2 language exam as this will be based on Transactional Writing!

“Reading is a passport to countless adventures”
― Mary Pope Osborne



Practice, practice, practice!

In order for your child to improve their writing skills, try encouraging them to practice their writing every day. This daily writing can take the form of a daily diary or ask your child to write about their hobbies or interests, even if it’s for only a 10 minute task every day. Using both a thesaurus and a dictionary will help with spelling and exposure to Tier 2 and 3 vocabulary.

 “Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” ― Frederick Douglass


Spoken language

Spoken language plays a significant role in literacy development as it provides the foundation for reading and writing.

Here are every-day tips to help improve your child's spoken language at home:

·        Engage in discussion with your child about current affairs or what they discussed in school that day.

·        Read with your child whether it be a novel, magazine or the daily newspaper

·        Choose a ‘Topic of the Week’ and discuss at dinner time each evening

·        Whilst out in public point out meaningful words that you encounter for example; on advertisements, timetables, leaflets etc.


‘ Today a reader, tomorrow a leader. ’
-Margaret Fuller

Why is Literacy so important?

Children who have a regular reading pattern of more than once a week at age 16 gain higher results in math's, vocabulary and spelling tests than those who read less regularly.

Recent statistics show that the most common type need for those with SEN support is speech, language and communication.

Reading for pleasure is more important for children’s development than their parents’ level of education and is a more powerful factor in life achievement than socio-economic background.

1 in 3 children do not own a book. Having books in the home is associated with both reading enjoyment and confidence.

Of children who report having fewer than 10 books in their homes, 42% say they do not like reading and only 32% say they are ‘very confident’ readers.

For children who report having over 200 books at home, only 12% say they do not like reading and 73% consider themselves ‘very confident’ readers.


Useful Links

Words for life. Please click here

School reading list. Please click here

Bedrock Learning. Please click here

Reading Agency. Please click here

Digital Literacy Curriculum. Please click here

National Literacy Trust. Please click here

Read for Good. Please click here

10 top tips for parents to support children to read. Please click here 

Cheshire Education Library Service. Please click here

What is guided reading? Please click here



For more information regarding Literacy, please contact our School Literacy Lead, Mrs Jessica Holmes -