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Why is Pathways to Read changing?

Jul 11th 2024

Pathways to Read units provide progressive development of reading skills that follow the mastery approach. The units, for use from year 1 to year 6, provide clear and detailed plans that ensure engaging and purposeful reading lessons. Each unit of work is expected to last a half-term, and there are 6 weeks of whole-class reading sessions provided per unit. 

The programme guarantees complete coverage of the content domains, incorporating high-quality discussions that revolve around the essence of rich language. There is a variety of activities and tasks at every level, allowing pupils to enhance their vocabulary, make predictions, retrieve information and respond effectively using their mastery keys. 

It also ensures a consistent approach to reading across the school and ensures that reading skills are taught explicitly and progressively. The programme uses inspiring books and novels that guarantee engaging and purposeful reading lessons. 

Why we made the changes? 

After listening to feedback from our Pathways to Read schools and from a wide reading of current research*, the team have made some positive amends to the units of work and generated new units in the process too. 

Previous units included 6 whole class sessions and 6 grouped reading sessions. Many schools have been delivering the grouped reading sessions as whole class sessions, particularly across KS2 – this whole class method has been a key driver in our adaptations. Some schools found the grouped sessions tricky, partly due to timetabling and partly due to adult support.

To address this, the units across KS2 have been amended to daily sessions of 20/30 minutes with all of these delivered as whole class sessions

The reading strategies have been split across the week to ensure an appropriate amount of time for delivery.

KS1 units have not been altered in their structure. Year 1 continues to focus on whole class delivery and Y2 still includes whole class and grouped sessions to support pupils’ development of word reading and comprehension skills. 

Another key driver towards the adaptations has been the inclusion of fluency practice in all year groups after close reading of current research*. All units now include clear references to both modelling of fluency and opportunities to focus on fluency practice. A range of approaches to support fluency development have been integrated into all units to ensure development of reading with appropriate speed, accuracy, automaticity, and prosody. 

* Improving Literacy at KS1 and at KS2 (EEF), The Reading Framework (DfE) and Telling the story: the English education subject report (Ofsted) 

All texts used for Pathways to Read are selected first and foremost for ‘literary merit’. The texts increase in complexity of language and themes over time.

Each text in Pathways to Read links to Pathways to Write and covers a range of topics to support the wider curriculum.

The priority was to avoid writing a full new set of Pathways to Read units to ensure costs were kept down for schools. Where themes already linked to set 1 units, new units were not written. Where themes did not link, new units were written.

Ensuring a balance of fiction and non-fiction texts was also a priority with the new units of work.  

For current Pathways to Read users, there are various options to upgrade your package from adding in the fluency aspect to planning and PowerPoints to selecting units that work for your school.

If you have any questions about updating your current Pathways to Read package, you can contact us at online@theliteracycompany.co.uk.


Would you like to find out more about transforming the reading culture in your school? Start by downloading a free sample pack here.   

If you have already seen a sample, you can start a trial of Pathways to Read here