“To learn to read is to light a fire” — Victor Hugo, Les Miserables

"Schools that take the business of reading for pleasure seriously, where teachers read, talk with enthusiasm and recommend books, and where provision for reading is planned carefully, are more likely to succeed with their pupils' reading." (Ofsted)

At Yew Tree Community School the active encouragement of reading for pleasure is a core part of every child’s entitlement, whatever their background or attainment. Yew Tree Community School strongly believes that extensive reading and a wide exposure to a range of texts makes a vital contribution to every child’s educational achievement.

Reading for pleasure at Yew Tree Community School aims to establish each child as a life-time reader based on developing a love of reading. We believe that reading for pleasure impacts on children’s futures and their life chances. To facilitate this we ensure our children are given a rich curriculum which encourages reading of books and other kinds of texts.

“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you’ll go.”— Dr. Seuss, “I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!”

At Yew Tree Community School we aim to promote the concepts of reading for ‘fun’, ‘enjoyment’ and ‘pleasure’.

What the School does

  • Ensures there is age-related fiction and non-fiction within each class via the class book corner.
  • Children and parents are supported and encouraged to join and use the classroom libraries.
  • Whole Class Novels that are read collaboratively with the adults and children throughout the school year.
  • Provides newspapers and magazines (the school subscribes to First News and children’s comics).
  • Children have access to internet based texts which can be accessed via laptops and iPads.
  • We celebrate children’s love of reading by ensuring book time is available every day.
  • Ensures reading takes place both at school and at home.
  • The school encourages links with parents by ensuring every child has a reading journal’ that records all reading habits, signed by parents and monitored by teachers.
  • Pupil voice is central to the school ethos, and guides the purchase of books throughout the school. Pupil questionnaires are used to gain an insight into the reading habits of the children.

Role of Staff

  • Staff at Yew Tree Community School regularly read to children. Children can benefit tremendously from being read to aloud.   Effective reading aloud time helps to create a positive reading experience which engages students and allows adults to model their enthusiasm for books and reading. This allows whole class interaction stopping to ask questions about what has been read or discussing the pictures they have been shown. This helps to improve pupil’s comprehension of a story.
  • Actively promote books of personal interest by regularly referencing books and promoting different kinds of books.
  • Provide regular time for pupils to read a self-chosen book silently. These slots are built into each class every day to allow every child dedicated time for reading for pleasure.
  • Monitor the Book Corner ensuring it is easily accessible for all children. (e.g.  fiction books together, non-fiction books together, selection of books by the same author. Author of the week books displayed to show this.

Class Book Corners

So please, oh PLEASE, we beg, we pray, Go throw your TV set away, And in its place you can install, A lovely bookshelf on the wall.” — Roald Dahl, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

  • The book corners contain books from a variety of genres, by a variety of authors and covers a wide range of interest including:

Stories and narrative accounts, e.g. fairy tales, folk tales, and biographies

Picture books with thought provoking images and examples of artistic talent

Information books

Poetry books

Joke books

Miscellaneous reading materials including magazines, newspapers, encyclopaedias, maps and posters

  • Children are encouraged to change books often and time is given for discussion about the books they have enjoyed.
  • We have organised a reading challenge across the school, which result from children reading, participation from parents and workshops in the early years. A half termly raffle will provide prizes and opportunity through assemblies to further celebrate reading.
  • There is an annual budget for books to meet the demands and needs of each academic year. This budget takes into account the need to replenish and update books and links to the school improvement plan.

World Book Day and Children’s Book Weeks are celebrated annually.

This policy, although linked to the English Policy, stands alone in its promotion and encouragement of reading as a pleasurable activity and is used to engrain the School’s philosophy of a love of reading throughout life.


“Reading is a discount ticket to everywhere”- Mary Schmich