Easy ways to help students make progress


Any quality fictional text. Reading extracts will build understanding of characters, setting and how atmosphere is created.  Reading whole novels or short stories will extend understanding of themes.

Non-fiction. Any quality newspaper, magazine or internet website discussing topical issues.

Before reading you can:

  • Talk about strategies they can use if they come across an unfamiliar word.
  • Focus on what they do well, encouraging them to build on their strengths as readers.


During reading you can:

  • Use the internet to find information on a range of topics or read newspapers together looking for specific information; e.g. weather, television programming, sport etc.
  • Read yourself – show them that reading has a purpose and is enjoyable.


After reading you can:

  • Choose one or two words that they were unfamiliar with and talk about how the word could be used in other contexts.
  • Ask questions to check the level of understanding of the text.
  • Ask the student to write a short summary of the events in the text focusing on key elements and ensuring accurate spelling, punctuation and grammar.
  • Dictate an extract from the text. The student can then check their spelling, punctuation and grammar directly from the text in order to embed learning.

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