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BIG Reading



Big Reading was introduced at St. Augustine’s in January 2013, and is used alongside the Herts. Guided Reading Programme.

Big Reading is the teaching of the key skills of reading through talk, collaboration and FUN!

Each week children from Reception to Y6 have a Big Reading Mega Mission as well as Mini Missions to complete during daily Guided Reading sessions (known as Reading Spies Team Time). 

Children have the opportunity to practise the skills necessary to become competent readers.

The key skills of reading are:

  • READ - phonics, sight words & other ‘decoding’ strategies
  • Retrieve
  • Explore
  • Analyse
  • Deduce and infer

The skills of the reading are taught through the Reading Spies Team:

Each class has a Big Reading display board that shows which character will be helping the children to practise their reading skills and become even better readers. 

Rex Retriever activities include:

  • Retrieving information from different texts.
  • Chasing after questions to find the answers.
  • Retelling events from the text.
  • Summarising what has been read.
  • Identifying ‘Very Important Points’ (V.I.P.s)
  • Skimming text to get the main idea.
  • Scanning texts to find exact information.
  • Do you want to throw me a question? Shall we find the answer together? Let’s go!

Expi Explorer activities include:

  • Exploring texts in LOTS of detail.
  • Discovering the different ways authors write for different effects.
  • Collecting ‘WOW’ words – I LOVE them!
  • Finding as many new ‘WOW’ words as I can – the more the merrier!
  • Gathering sentences to find out how the author has written them in a deliberate way for a certain effect.
  • Helping you ask lots of questions about WHY authors have written in certain ways.
  • Deciding on the author’s viewpoint in texts they have written. Let’s go exploring texts together!

Ansa Analyser activities include:

  • Being incredibly organised – I like everything to be in the correct place.
  • Labelling the key features of texts – I love headings, sub-headings, paragraphs …
  • Playing jigsaws with texts. Nothing pleases me more than putting texts back together!
  • Playing ‘Spot the Difference’ with different types of text. Let’s look at how a text is built together!

Dood detective activites include:

  • Finding clues.
  • Looking for evidence and think about what it suggests.
  • Making connections between different pieces information to solve mysteries.
  • ‘Reading between the lines’ to add more detail to the meanings of texts.
  • Predicting what is going to happen next from clues in the story.
  • Using evidence to put together crime suspect (character) profiles and crime scene (setting) imaging together. Join me so we can go text-detecting together
  • The skills of reading are relevant across all subjects in the curriculum and the character may often appear in other lessons to help children complete their work.
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