Reading Support

Reading Support at Cliff Park Ormiston Academy

As part of the OAT-wide initiative to get young people reading more, we offer an interesting and dynamic reading curriculum at Cliff Park Ormiston Academy which exposes our young people to a rich diet of fiction and non-fiction texts. Students have a Read-Aloud session once per week during form time and will also engage in well-selected texts across the wider curriculum.

Why should we Read Aloud?

Reading aloud to young people supports students in learning how to use language to make sense of the world around them; it improves their information processing skills, vocabulary and comprehension. Many young people struggle to engage with independent reading because they have not developed the fluency skills required to extract meaning and enjoyment from the text – reading aloud provides students with the opportunity to listen to a fluent reader, with expression and technical accuracy. It exposes young people to a wider vocabulary and literary language that they would otherwise be unable to access. In addition to this, reading aloud creates a classroom community in which discussion can be used to encourage listeners to construct meanings, connect ideas, use prior knowledge and question unfamiliar vocabulary and contexts.

The Read Aloud Curriculum

In partnership with OAT, we have developed a curriculum of wide-ranging, high-quality texts, including selected classics, that young people may not otherwise encounter. While some students will experience reading such texts outside of school, for the majority, school is the most likely place where they will be exposed to such reading material. We believe that all young people have the right to a high-quality reading experience and have developed the Read Aloud Curriculum to provide age-appropriate quality reading material to our students accessed via an ‘expert’ reader.

Read Aloud Schedule 2023-24

Year GroupBook 1Book 2
7The Outsiders – SE HintonNorse Mythology – Neil Gaiman
8I am Malala YousafzaiAnimal Farm – George Orwell
9Empire of the Sun – JG BallardRebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
10A Short History of Nearly Everything – Bill BrysonTo Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
11The Great Gatsby – F Scott FitzgeraldBrave New World – Aldous Huxley

Support for Struggling Readers

At Cliff Park Ormiston Academy, we know that reading is the key to unlocking knowledge and so we take the development of our young peoples’ reading very seriously. Students at Cliff Park Ormiston Academy will have their reading ability assessed termly in Key Stage 3 in order to track their progress and development in reading. This also allows for the early identification of struggling readers and early implementation of reading interventions.

At Cliff Park, we have fortnightly Library lessons, where struggling readers will read to our dedicated Rasing Achievement Mentor. In addition to this we use Lexonik Leap and Lexonik Advance to provide students with a rigorous and systematic programme to develop their reading.

Lexonik Leap:

Lexonik Leap is a phonics intervention which effectively resolves phonics gaps for learners who find literacy particularly challenging and those for whom English is not their first language. This is a six-step phonics intervention programme which rapidly progresses phonics, reading, spelling and oracy. Activities are adaptable, allowing focus to shift depending on whether supporting an EAL learner or a learner who is experiencing difficulties acquiring the basic levels of literacy. The programme is specifically designed with an older learner in mind to ensure instruction is age appropriate.

Lexonik Advance:

Lexonik Advance is a unique, research-based literacy intervention programme for schools, leveraging metacognition, repetition, decoding and automaticity. Lexonik Advance trains learners to develop phonological awareness and make links between unknown words using common prefix, stems and suffix definitions. Delivered by our dedicated Raising Achievement Mentor in six one-hour sessions, Lexonik Advance works for all learners regardless of age or ability and is delivered on a 1:4 teaching ratio.

Related Policy: Teaching of Literacy Policy (2022-23)