Literacy and Reading

Literacy at Nottingham Free School

"Literacy is the combination of reading, writing , speaking and listening skills that we all need to fulfil our potential. These skills are essential to the happiness, health and wealth of individuals and society.

One person in six in the UK lives with poor literacy. This holds them back at every stage of their life. As a child they won't be able to succeed at school, as an adult they will be locked out of the job market and on becoming a parent, they won't be able to support their child's learning. Lacking these vital skills undermines their well-being and stops them making a full contribution to the economic and cultural life of our nation."

National Literacy Trust

At Nottingham Free School we believe that all teachers are responsible for developing literacy skills in all of our pupils. This will support pupil learning and raise standards across the curriculum because:

  • Reading skills allow pupils to access information in all subjects.
  • Increased vocabulary knowledge will help them in all subjects.
  • Writing skills allow pupils to express their knowledge and understanding in all subjects.
  • Increased literacy levels will have a positive impact on pupils' self esteem, motivation and behaviour.
  • Pupils will have a greater chance of success in all areas of their lives.

Literacy and reading strategies:

  • All staff are teachers of reading. This includes vocabulary teaching, listening to students read and targeted intervention to weaker readers.
  • Drop Everything and Read (DEAR) - Years 7,8 and 9 read for 15 minutes every day, on a rotating cycle of lessons.
  • Most students have at least one reading lesson a week in their English curriculum
  • Reading Ambassadors - a team of students who promote reading across the school.
  • Reading buddies - older students listen to younger students read
  • Promotion of reading through participation in national events eg World Book Day

Reading at Nottingham Free School

Reading Policy at Nottingham Free School:

  • Development of reading skills will be given a high priority in every subject
  • All students who need extra support with reading will be identified and helped
  • No student will leave school unable to read at the expected level for their age

As a school, we are passionate about reading and would encourage all our students to pick up a book as a way of stimulating their imagination, improving their vocabulary and expression and, above all, providing hours of entertainment away from televisions, phones, iPads and computers.

We recommend both fiction and non-fiction; both provide a source of information and will help students to improve their grammar, spelling and sense of how a piece of writing should be organised.

To help promote good reading habits, we would encourage parents and carers to be heavily involved in this process. There are a number of ways in which you can do this:

  • read regularly in front of your child. It helps if they see you reading as it provides them with a good role model
  • read with your child. Read to them or listen to them read.
  • visit the library or bookshop together
  • have lots of books, magazines and newspapers around the house
  • discuss books and newspaper articles with your children

With so many distractions and demands on their time, it is extremely important for students to have an opportunity to read quietly and think about what they have read; it helps students make sense of the world around them and reflect on their place within that world.

June 2024


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