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Reading for pleasure

Subject Lead: Ms Owolowo


Reading for pleasure is a vital part of every child’s educational entitlement. Developing a love of reading has huge benefits for children, contributing to their educational achievement across the curriculum, as well as providing a lifetime of enjoyment.

At Downshall Primary School, we believe in both the importance of developing children’s word-reading skills and comprehension, and the need to engender their love of books and reading. We recognise that these two elements are essential if children are to become life-long readers.

National Curriculum

According to the National Curriculum, pupils should be taught to develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information. Click here for more information: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/national-curriculum-in-england-english-programmes-of-study/national-curriculum-in-england-english-programmes-of-study

Our curriculum subject vision document

Please use this link to access our most up to date Reading for Pleasure Policy.

By the end of the year, our aim is for every pupil in the following phases to be able to demonstrate their engagement with reading of pleasure.

Nursery/Reception – name a favourite story and talk about it

Year 1/4 – name a favourite genre

Year 5/6 – name a favourite author

Subject Displays

Subject Display 1
Subject Display 2

How is Reading for Pleasure Promoted?

1.       Daily story time - throughout the school, pupils are read to daily by their teachers, ensuring pupils are exposed to a wide range of diverse and contemporary children’s books.   “My teacher reads to me every day during story time. I like it when my teacher acts out the voices and makes the story exciting. It makes me want to listen more and to read the book on my own.” – Nusaiba, 2B

2.       Weekly book talk sessions – during weekly book talk sessions, pupils have an opportunity to ‘blether’ (talk informally) about the books they are reading. Here, teachers and pupils recommend books to each other with pupils giving reasons for their recommendations. In these sessions, books are swapped, shared and discussed. It also gives teachers valuable insights into their class’ reading habits.

3.       A whole-school immersive atmosphere of reading – with lively book corners, assemblies on reading, a library bus in the playground, termly visits to Seven Kings Library, a corridor mural and exciting displays about reading across the school, pupils are constantly nudged to pick up a book to read!


There are a variety of enrichment activities throughout the year – notably World Book Day which is celebrated in March every year. This year, we also celebrated World Poetry Day where pupils learnt about poetry and shared their written poems with the school. We have also been taking part in the yearly Redbridge Children’s book awards over the last few years. Participating pupils are members of the book club where they meet weekly to discuss the books, swap and then vote for their favourite books. The final event is the awards ceremony where children have an opportunity meet the authors, ask them questions and have their books signed.

Recently, Downshall hosted the Brian Peppiatt Reading Festival and some of our year 6 pupils had the opportunity to meet with and discuss books and reading with their peers from the other schools in the New Vision Trust.

Enrichment 1
Enrichment 2
Enrichment 3

Links to helpful websites

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