Chatham Nursery’s Road to Reading
We value literacy skills in all aspects of our Nursery life.
We aim to develop a lifelong love of reading and writing in our children and through supporting families at home.
The importance of developing speaking and listening skills is recognized as the foundation for success in reading and writing and this is given high priority through story chat and the environment we offer.
Research has shown that children who find pleasure in sharing books and stories are well on their way to success in reading.
Young children and their families need to know that sharing books and reading are not only pleasurable and fun experiences that will lead to later literacy success but also how books can develop speaking and listening skills, vocabulary, bonding, relaxation and comfort.
We need to plant the literacy seed so that reading and writing take root and flourish.
So how do we support children at Chatham so that we know that we are giving them the best possible start along the road to literacy?
• Periods of child initiated learning within our high quality dynamic learning environment which supports all our children’s learning.
• Trained staff who observe, wait and listen and teach in the moment if appropriate.
• Guided experiences and intentional teaching sessions to support individuals such as small group time and language groups.
• Children also access daily story times, singing, movement, nursery rhymes songs and games.
• Three language leaders within the setting who offer specialist support.

In order for children to become good readers they need to become good speakers and listeners. We ensure that talking with children and supporting talk between children is given time and space.
It is important to understand that children need to understand what they hear before they can read therefore we have strong emphasis on vocabulary building throughout our day.

“The most effective period for cognitive skill investment by parents is early on in the life of their child” (CUNHA and TEAL 2006)

We know that by the time the children move on from our setting most will be aware of the possibilities of reading and writing. We will support them along the road to literacy and develop the joy and empowerment this can bring.

How we foster a love of reading

Unique child

• Books reflecting cultures, gender and no stereotypes capture your child’s interest
• All about me file stories based on the child themselves, as well as encouraging contributions from home
• We celebrate the home language of your child. We acknowledge and encourage both your home language and English
• Dual language books are available in the Home Lending Library
• Wide range of books aim to capture the interest of young children, fiction and non-fiction reflect children’s current interests and mini topics

Positive relationships

• Valuing parents as partners
• Book club
• Lending Library for children and adults
• Book Activity home pack
• Theatre companies

Learning and development
• Language leaders- bring knowledge and expertise
• Phonics – is simply letters and their sounds
• It is important to appreciate that children need to understand what they hear before they can understand what they read. Much focus is given to pre reading skills
• In Nursery much time is given to children to prepare them for reading.
• Listening and attention …..

Enabling environment.
• Children are read to regularly in both structured parts of the daily routine and at informal times
• Designated areas for reading indoors and outdoors books
• Books are in every area to consolidate extend learning
• Extending children’s experiences through vocabulary – visit to Story barn, Central Library museums and parks
• Urley trained practitioners able to support language development

We work closely with Picton and Kensington Children Centre. This enables us to link with their resources to support literacy, e.g. Book start, lending library including dual language resources. They also support people to sign up with their local library. They offer onsite sessions that promote sharing books and the development of language and literacy, including Time to sign, Rhythm and rhyme sessions and story telling sessions.