National Curriculum KS1 Y2: Reading Comprehension

Statutory requirements

Pupils should be taught to:

  • develop pleasure in reading, motivation to read, vocabulary and understanding by: 
    • listening to, discussing and expressing views about a wide range of contemporary and classic poetry, stories and non-fiction at a level beyond that at which they can read independently 
    • discussing the sequence of events in books and how items of information are related
    • becoming increasingly familiar with and retelling a wider range of stories, fairy stories and traditional tales 
    • being introduced to non-fiction books that are structured in different ways 
    • recognising simple recurring literary language in stories and poetry 
    • discussing and clarifying the meanings of words, linking new meanings to known vocabulary 
    • discussing their favourite words and phrases 
    • continuing to build up a repertoire of poems learnt by heart, appreciating these and reciting some, with appropriate intonation to make the meaning clear 
  • understand both the books that they can already read accurately and fluently and those that they listen to by: 
    • drawing on what they already know or on background information and vocabulary provided by the teacher 
    • checking that the text makes sense to them as they read and correcting inaccurate reading 
    • making inferences on the basis of what is being said and done 
    • answering and asking questions 
    • predicting what might happen on the basis of what has been read so far 
  • participate in discussion about books, poems and other works that are read to them and those that they can read for themselves, taking turns and listening to what others say 
  • explain and discuss their understanding of books, poems and other material, both those that they listen to and those that they read for themselves.

Notes and guidance (non-statutory)

Pupils should be encouraged to read all the words in a sentence and to do this accurately, so that their understanding of what they read is not hindered by imprecise decoding (for example, by reading ‘place’ instead of ‘palace’).

Pupils should monitor what they read, checking that the word they have decoded fits in with what else they have read and makes sense in the context of what they already know about the topic.

The meaning of new words should be explained to pupils within the context of what they are reading, and they should be encouraged to use morphology (such as prefixes) to work out unknown words.

Pupils should learn about cause and effect in both narrative and non-fiction (for example, what has prompted a character’s behaviour in a story; why certain dates are commemorated annually). ‘Thinking aloud’ when reading to pupils may help them to understand what skilled readers do.

Deliberate steps should be taken to increase pupils’ vocabulary and their awareness of grammar so that they continue to understand the differences between spoken and written language.

Discussion should be demonstrated to pupils. They should be guided to participate in it and they should be helped to consider the opinions of others. They should receive feedback on their discussions.

Role-play and other drama techniques can help pupils to identify with and explore characters. In these ways, they extend their understanding of what they read and have opportunities to try out the language they have listened to.


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