Literacy at Magnus

At Magnus Church of England Academy, we are passionately committed to developing pupils’ spoken language, reading, writing and vocabulary skills. We believe these are integral aspects across all areas of our curriculum and are vital in supporting our pupils to achieve excellence.


At Magnus, we recognise and value the importance of our pupils having access to high quality texts. Our reading approach is divided into ‘reading for pleasure’ and ‘reading to learn’ to enable pupils to be exposed to a full range of reading material.

  • Reading for Pleasure

Whilst at Magnus, we are committed to providing our pupils opportunities for reading for pleasure. This is delivered partly through our Reading Curriculum that focuses on the Magnus Canon (please the see the ‘Reading’ tab for more information) but also through regular access to library lessons, further reading lists in our knowledge organisers to support different topics being studied and book boxes readily available in our different faculty areas.

Our reading lessons, follow a similar structure in both KS3 and KS4 where pupils are encouraged to reflect and ask questions about what they are reading, discuss tier 2 vocabulary and discuss key themes

  • Reading to Learn 

Reading to learn is an approach that ensures pupils are exposed to challenging academic texts. Whilst there is no set way to teach a reading text, across different subject areas, we recognise the importance of consistent approaches to ensure high quality texts are accessible for our pupils. One such approach used throughout the academy is ‘skimming, scanning and zooming’ to support pupils’ understanding during and after reading a text.

  • Reading Support

At Magnus, we recognise that there at some pupils who may require additional and bespoke reading intervention. Pupils’ reading ages are regularly assessed using a variety of nationally recognised reading tests and there are a range of intervention pathways available based on the needs identified.


At Magnus, we are committed to supporting and challenging our students to confidently use ambitious vocabulary across all curriculum areas. As a result, tier 2 and 3 vocabulary are explicitly taught across all areas of our curriculum. They feature in all knowledge organisers and are explicitly taught as part of our curriculum.


Pupils are exposed to a variety of writing types throughout their time here and our ‘I do, we do, you do’ approach ensures that pupils are carefully guided through producing extended writing responses.

Our academy’s marking policy also encourages a common focus on SPaG with universal symbols to ensure that pupils are supported in developing vital areas of their writing.


Speaking and listening skills are vital in supporting our pupils to become effective communicators. In lessons, pupils will be asked to ‘respond like a scholar’ to improve their spoken responses. This may be to encourage the use of full sentences or the appropriate use of tier 2 and 3 vocabulary.  Our use of ‘turn and talk’ also allows pupils the time to develop and refine their responses.

Our varied enrichment programme also supports the development of literacy for pupils with opportunities such as creative writing, debate club, BBA, audiobook club and Harry Potter club.