Reading - Phonics

At Ark Victoria, we use the Read Write Inc (RWI) programme which was developed by Ruth Miskin. We begin the programme in Reception and continue teaching RWI to children beyond Key Stage One if they still need support in their reading.

This approach:​

Gets children decoding and comprehending quickly.
Ensures children read storybooks and non-fiction books matched to their growing phonic knowledge.
Assesses regularly to track every child’s progress.
Ensures that every child participates in the whole lesson- as a group and then during paired reading time.
Ensures pupils learn to decode effortlessly so that they can put all their energy into comprehending what they read.

Our Reading Curriculum

Every year group at Ark Victoria has dedicated time in their timetable for the teaching of reading. This looks different dependent on the age of the child - from structured story time in Reception, to the use of reading toolkits to learn key skills in Key Stage Two.

Pupils are encouraged by teachers to practice their reading at school and at home. Pupils are given a home reader that matches their reading age and have space in their reading log to fill in about their current book. There is also space for communication about home reading between teacher, parent and pupil.

Reading for Pleasure

At Ark Victoria we believe that children’s reading for pleasure is strongly influenced by relationships, including those between children and families and those between children, teachers, families and communities of readers. We know that it is important to value different text types and to understand who our pupils are as readers.

Reading Areas

Every classroom has an inviting reading area along with ‘Reading for Pleasure’ displays featuring specific authors and book recommendations. Reading areas have been created throughout school to promote independent reading for pleasure. We believe it is important for these areas to be well organised and used by pupils regularly.


We are lucky to have a fabulous library filled with books and quiet spaces for study. We also have a dedicated librarian to help pupils choose the right book. The library is the perfect spot for a special story time or even an author visit!

Recommended Reads

Each teacher at Ark Victoria has a special box or shelf in their classroom that is filled with their recommended reads. We ensure that teachers are up to date with the latest releases and that books are representative and diverse. These books are shared with classes to ensure that pupils become excited about reading and books.

World Book day

Every year at Ark Victoria we celebrate our love of reading by dressing up for World Book Day. We have a great day filled with activities and prizes.




In the Secondary phase, we aim to ensure that all students read at or above their chronological age. 

Reading ages 

At the beginning of the academic year, we use the NGRT (New Group Reading Test) to determine students’ reading age. This information is shared with students and is recorded in their planner, so that they can share with parents and track their reading journey. It is also shared with teachers so that they know how to support students with the reading skills. 

Accelerated Reader 

Our students use their reading age to select a text that falls into their ‘Zone of Proximal Development’. This means that students read books that are at an appropriate level of challenge to ensure they make progress with their comprehension of vocabulary. Accelerated Reader is supported with quizzes and an online platform that records how many words a student has read. Will you be one of our first one million word readers? 

Library lessons 

Each class in Key Stage 3 has a dedicated weekly library lesson, in our brand-new library space which opened in September 2021. These lessons provide an opportunity for students to read with a teacher, listen to the teacher and class read aloud, exchange their library books and complete quizzes on Accelerated Reader.  

Reading interventions 

We have a range of Reading interventions, which support students with decoding, fluency and vocabulary acquisition. Reading interventions take place in small groups and are reviewed regularly to track reading progress of students. 

Shared Reading 

Each form room in Ark Victoria is supplied with a set of reading books that form teachers and pupils can share together. Books are age appropriate and cover a wide range of topics, contexts and histories to support children in developing their cultural capital. 


Reading is rewarded at Ark Victoria not only with progress and knowledge but with opportunities to win cherished prizes. Autumn 2021 will see the introduction of a Book Vending Machine to our library. Pupils who have excelled in their efforts to read will be rewarded with a token that can be exchanged at the vending machine for a book of their choice. 

Book Corners 

Each form tutor at Ark Victoria has a special box or trolley in their classroom that is filled with excellent options for reading. Form tutors have decorated their corners to ensure reading is a joyful experience. Students can use this resource to delve into and discover a new favourite author and discuss what they have read with each other. 


At Ark Victoria Academy, all our pupils develop a passion for reading.

Please use the below link to share in the wonderful reading work of our pupils and to hear all the latest reading news from our academy!  

Ark Victoria reads Twitter