Daily Supported Reading Programme (DSR) – Year 1

The Daily Supported Reading Programme (DSR) is a classroom programme that helps to move all children on in their reading. We have adopted the DSR programme in Year 1.

The programme provides a coherent and systematic approach where children enjoy daily independent reading in small groups (no more than six) led by a trained adult.

Children are grouped across the two classes in the year group according to their independent reading level. This level is decided on by the class teachers and the DSR co-ordinator.

Adults use differentiated lesson guides to move children on and make sound judgements about when to do so. Weekly feedback and development sessions support this process.

Benefit to school and children

  • Establishes strong systems for organising reading support
  • Ensures that all children make maximum progress in reading
  • Provides professional development for staff to improve their provision of reading support
  • Proven impact linked to long term data

If you would like any further information on DSR and how your child is involved and will benefit from this programme, please do not hesitate to get in contact with Ms Fennell.

Destination Reader at St Mary’s – A guide for parents

In September this year, we started a new whole class teaching programme in Years 3 to 6. ‘Destination Reader’ (or ‘DR’ as you may have heard the children call it) involves daily sessions, incorporating whole class modelling of reading skills, before the children apply these skills through partner work and independent reading.

Children deepen their understanding of the texts they read through the systematic use of a series of strategies and language stems.
It also builds a culture of reading for pleasure and purpose.

Core books and reading strategies

Each year group has a list of core books that are shared with the children during the year.

The children are encouraged to use different reading strategies to unlock their understanding of the texts. They are also given sentence stems to support explanations.

At the end of this booklet you will see the strategies that are being taught and the sentence stems that go with each strategy.

Learning behaviours

Within Destination Reader sessions, time is also spent ensuring that children are developing good learning behaviour. The three behaviours support children in knowing how to communicate effectively:

  • Be supportive and actively listen to others
  • Discuss and explain your ideas
  • Take responsibility for your own and your group’s learning


Our approaches to writing at St Mary’s include:

  • ‘Mark making’
  • ‘Sounds Write’
  • ‘Talk for Writing’
  • Phonics and spelling
  • Emergent writing
  • Shared Writing
  • Guided Writing/Independent Writing
  • Extended writing
  • Handwriting
  • Creative writing activities

Teachers also seek to take advantage of opportunities to make cross-curricular links. They plan for pupils to practise and apply the skills, knowledge and understanding acquired through literacy lessons to other areas of the curriculum.

Talk for Writing at St Mary’s

The majority of our teaching of writing is based on the ‘Talk for Writing’ approach. We believe strongly (and have seen!) that this approach makes a huge difference to the quality of children’s writing. It gives them opportunity to imitate and internalise the language of stories, before moving on to being supported in crafting their writing. We use text or story maps and actions to help us recall the story or non-fiction text, open each unit in a creative engaging way, focus strongly on developing vocabulary, before bringing the learning together to produce a final written outcome.

In each year group ‘page’ you will find links to National Curriculum expectations for writing.



Words are made up of small units of sound called phonemes. Phonics teaches children to be able to listen carefully and identify the phonemes that make up each word. This helps children to learn to read words and spell words.

At St Mary’s we follow ‘Letters and Sounds’ throughout The Foundation stage and Key Stage 1. This is supplemented with resources from other schemes such as ‘Jolly Phonics’ (you have probably heard your child singing ‘Ants on the apple, a…a…a…’!)

Phonics is taught every day, for 20 minutes, with follow-up tasks throughout the day and other opportunities for practise and consolidation, for example, through focused, adult-led activities in the classroom and opportunities in the outside areas.

In this section you will find links to a phonics glossary of terms, an overview of the order in which the sounds and skills are taught and a parents’ guided to the year 1 phonics screening check.