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Reading at Cambrai


“The more that you read, the more things you will know. 
The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”


Dr. Seuss 

Reading is at the heart of the curriculum at Cambrai Primary School; teaching a child to read is the greatest gift that we can give a child in our school. Because of this, we see it as a primary purpose of our curriculum. From Early Years to Year 6, we ensure that our children not only learn the skills and knowledge to enable them to read, but also to develop positive life-long dispositions and attitudes towards reading – that will take our children through secondary school and in to adulthood. 

Teaching children to ‘decode’ or ‘read’ in its most basic form is a key driver for our Early Years and Key Stage 1 curriculum. Once children can ‘read’, through a robust and systematic approach, the world opens up to them. It is our duty to ensure that our children are ready to embrace both the literary and wider world. We use the 'Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised' scheme of learning to deliver our phonics teaching in our school; we have had extensive support from the regional 'English Hub' to ensure best practice is seen in this vital aspect of our work. More information on the  'Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised' scheme for parents can be found here

Research shows that approximately 90% of the vocabulary that we meet is only ever met through reading it; reading high quality texts, coupled with an interesting and knowledge rich wider curriculum, is key to securing our children’s confidence and mastery of the English language. 

Within our broader English Curriculum planning, our intent for reading is clear: 

  • Credible and rich texts will be the central driver to the English curriculum – promoting a love of reading, excellent models of language, cultural broadening and confidence.

  • Children become fluent and age appropriate readers across Early Years and Key Stage 1 – so that they can access and comprehend all that Key Stage 2 has to offer, gaining a vitally growing vocabulary across the key stage. 

  • With few exceptions, all children reach the expected standard in year 1 phonics, with word reading fluency being the primary driver of the year 1 reading curriculum – so they are ready to gain greater reading comprehension skills as their decoding secures.

For a full overview of how Cambrai Primary School teaches and priorities reading, please download our 'Reading Strategy' below. 


Teaching young children to read is achieved by expert teaching of 'phonics'. Phonics is a method of teaching children to read by linking sounds (phonemes) and the symbols that represent them (graphemes, or letter groups). Phonics is the learning-to-read method used in primary schools in the UK today. We always aim for parents to be partners in the learning that our children undertake at school - particularly in early reading... because reading at home, well, makes such a difference to how quickly children learn to read confidently and fluently. Our home early reading scheme books are Big Cat Collins  - which fully align to our teaching of the LIttle Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised scheme- and offer additional support and challenge when children may need it, whilst remaining faithful to the sounds the children have been taught. 

Below are some key sources of support that parents can use to ensure that home learning most effectively reinforces school learning - because the way many adults learned to read is not how it is taught today! Most importantly, however, our door is always open at Cambrai - so any questions, please just ask! 

What is 'Phonics'? 

Other Phonics Resources 

How we teach 'tricky words'
How to say all of the phonic sounds 
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