Our aim is to immerse students in quality literature and book experiences so that we can nurture a love of reading in our students and encourage life long readers. We do this by engaging our students in best Literacy teaching and learning practices and experiences.

At KDPS we teach reading through through the application of the Big 6 elements of reading instruction –

  • Oral language
  • Phonological awareness
  • Phonics
  • Vocabulary
  • Fluency
  • Comprehension

Teachers engage students in one on one Reading Conferences, which provides students with the opportunity  to share their thoughts about what they are reading with their teacher and set goals for future reading.

Guided Reading is a small group approach, which involves the teacher working with a small group of students who demonstrate similar reading behaviours and can all read a similar text level. The teacher works on reading strategies and developing comprehension. This method is used with students until they are able read and comprehend text independently.

Reciprocal Reading is a book discussion between the teacher and a small group of students to jointly construct what a text is about to improve comprehension. The teacher incorporates four main reading strategies: (1) predicting, (2) questioning, (3) clarifying, and (4) summarising.

Literature Circles is when a small groups of students gather together to discuss a a book or passage in depth. The discussion is guided by students’ response to what they have read.

Independent Reading is when children read familiar books or books/magazines/poems that are not difficult, so they can practice their reading goals established during the Reading Conference with the teacher.


At KDPS we immerse our students in authentic writing experiences. We do this through the use of the student Writer’s Notebook (foundation to year 6).

writer’s notebook is a blank book where a writer can engage in the fun, often messy job of being a writer – practicing, listening, playing with language, gathering images and insights and ideas.

We also students engage in the writing process through planning, drafting, re-reading, conferring with the teacher or other students. Students learn how to use different writing genres including; recount writing, persuasive writing, narrative story writing and descriptive writing. We encourage creativity and writing for purpose by explicitly teaching students using a range of different strategies;

The Writing Conference is a one-on-one strategy, designed to guide and assist students with their writing. Teachers support students to set goals to improve their writing and work on these goals during independent writing time.

Modeled Writing is when the teacher shows students how to write a passage or writing and orally articulates the writing process as they are writing.

Interactive Writing is used to teach younger students how to write. The process involves the sharing of a pen between the teacher and students and taking turns writing words and sounds in words. This is a very supportive strategy for students beginning to write in foundation and grade 1.

Shared Writing is a strategy teachers use with students to co-construct a piece of writing. The teacher scribes as they engage their students by prompting what words/phrases could go next.

THRASS (Teaching Handwriting, Reading and Spelling Skills)

At KDPS we implement the THRASS process for explicitly teaching Spelling, Handwriting, which also supports Reading skills. Each learning community implements the THRASS process to suit each students age and stage of learning.

English words are produced using a combination of 44 individual speech sounds called ‘phonemes’. These phonemes can be represented in writing using the 26 letters of the English alphabet, either individually or combined with other letters. There are numerous spelling choices (graphemes) for each phoneme.

For example, in English the letter ‘c’ does not just represent the sound ( c ) as heard at the beginning of words like cat. It can represent the sound  ( s ) as in the words city, cent, Cindy etc. The sound ( f ) is not just represented by the letter ‘f’ but can be represented by the letters ‘ph’, as in photo.

Knowing the 44 sounds of English and the various spelling choices that can represent these sounds enables students to understand the spelling system (orthography) of our language.

THRASS parent letter