Safeguarding Notice

St Gabriel’s RC Primary School is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people. All staff, governors and volunteers are expected to share this commitment. For more information please see our safeguarding policy which can be found under Key Information > Policies > Safeguarding Policy.

Please read our latest Ofsted report from February 2024
St Gabriel’s Roman Catholic Primary School

Phonics and Reading


The Read, Write, Inc. phonics programme is used. Children from Reception to Year 2 have access to daily small-group phonics teaching. Our systematic, synthetic phonics programme allows children to learn phonemes (individual sounds) and corresponding graphemes (written representation of a sound).  It builds up as children learn individual sounds and progress onto orally blending sounds together and being able to decode and read regular and irregular words. Progress is assessed each half term, ensuring provision is accurate and groups are fluid. In Reception and Year 1, children take home decodable books, which match the phonetic phase at which they are working, to aid their progression as independent readers. Non-decodable words, ‘tricky words’ are introduced to the children alongside the reading books that they use. Phonics provision continues into Year 3 and 4 where needed.


Reading Comprehension

At St. Gabriel’s, we use a novel based approach for the teaching of both reading and writing. High quality texts, shared with each class on a daily basis, provide the opportunity to engage in comprehension activities covering the following skills:


Key Stage One                                                          

Understanding the meaning of vocabulary and ideas within a text.                                              

Retrieving information.                                             

Sequencing events.                                                   

Inferring from the text.

Predicting what might happen, based on what has been read.


Key Stage Two

Explaining the meaning of vocabulary and ideas within a text.

Retrieving and recording of information.


Explaining and justifying inference with evidence from the text.          

Predicting from details stated and implied

Understanding the structure and organisation of a text.

Identifying and explaining how meaning is enhanced through choice of words or phrases. 

Making comparisons within and across texts.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         

From Year 2 upwards, children record responses to reading activities in Reading Journals.


Reading ~ Home/ School


Accelerated Reader

In Reception and Year 1 home / school reading books re-enforce phonics work undertaken in school. The children will bring home a decodable book, alongside a book for an adult to share with the child. From Years 2 to 6 we use Accelerated Reader to help boost children’s interest and engagement in reading.


Children have a wide range of books from which to choose (their Zone of Proximal Development). After completing their book, they take a short quiz that ranges from 5 to 10 questions, depending on the complexity of the text. This quiz may be taken at home or at school. Through these quizzes, children build up points and work towards a target so they can see their progress as they read through their chosen books.


You too can view progress through Renaissance Home Connect using the password and web link provided by school.


Children are encouraged to experience a range of different genres including narrative ‘chapter books’, classic tales, non-fiction, graphic novels and biographies. Each child has a Reading Record, which is used as communication between parent, teacher and pupil. Parents are also invited into school to participate in events such as ‘Book Tasting Sessions’.


Reading for Pleasure

At St. Gabriel’s we believe that it is essential to instil good reading habits into our children so that they have a love of literature that will not only last them a lifetime, but will open the door to future opportunities.  With this in mind, we have a vibrant and up-to-date library, which provides a range of books, book reviews and comfortable seating.  In every class room there is a dedicated reading area, the current theme of which is ‘Camp Out with a Good Book’. Children are encouraged to read in these comfortably furnished areas and to recommend books to their peers. Alongside their school reading book, pupils may take home a book from either their school or class library. ‘Book swap’ initiatives are used to broaden the range of literature available. Staff share their love of reading with the children and encourage them to widen their reading experiences by trying new authors or new genres. Children not only read with their teacher on a daily basis, they are also given the opportunity to read independently and to hear a text read to them. The sharing of a class novel for enjoyment is an important way to engage and enthuse pupils as they anticipate the next chapter and predict what may happen.