The Secret Garden School

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The Secret Garden aims to provide a supportive and engaging English curriculum for every pupil.  We believe that it is important to embed phonological skills whilst also providing an enriching curriculum that provides pupils with access to high quality texts that the pupils could not necessarily access independently. We recognise the important role that parents, carers, support staff and all teachers play in promoting reading positively, developing fluency and also supporting the development of comprehension skills.

Across the school, we place a high emphasis on reading. All pupils access dedicated time during each day, which is called “Guided Reading”. This takes place for a total of twenty minutes per day and use a programme on their individual iPad’s called Reading Plus.

Reading Plus is an adaptive reading intervention program designed to improve reading comprehension and speed up literacy acquisition across all years. This program offers teachers a highly effective and efficient method to identify struggling readers and teach them to read better. 

We aim for pupils to improve their reading fluency, motivation, comprehension, and reading stamina as they progress through the program.

Reading Plus comprises three components:

  1. A web-based adaptive assessment called InSight, which provides a fast and effective means of determining students' reading proficiency and ensuring they are on a personalised reading path to success.
  2. Adaptive, personalised instruction and practice that supports direct instruction and differentiation.  
  3. Accessible resources that enable teachers to implement the program effectively.

In addition to these three core components, Reading Plus comes with a content library containing hundreds of high-quality digital resources for 19 reading levels ranging from early readers readability through to post 16 education.

Alongside Reading Plus, we also encourage reading for pleasure amongst our children. Each morning, our children access their 'reading boxes' which contain materials that spark the children's interests. Every child has a selection of texts centred around their favourite things which they enjoy before lessons start. This helps to engage the children whilst also progressing their reading potential. 

To assist in developing the children's vocabulary, we promote a 'Word of the Day' across each Key Stage. These words are taken from each Key Stage's statutory spellings list. The children read, spell and use each word in a sentence, exposing them to 5 words each week that they may not have encountered before and ensuring progression in their spellings. 

On site, we have an extensive collection of books in our library. We have books to suit all ages and genres, this is to encourage a love of reading and inspire our children to keep picking up the books they love and try something they haven't before!