Quality Stories

Key Texts



“The more that you read. The more things you will know. The more that you know, the more places you will go”

Dr. Suess


At Rawmarsh Nursery School we have a detailed scheme of key texts starting in 2-3’s through until the end of FS1.  These texts have been carefully selected so that they support the development of particular language concepts and vocabulary in line with the age of the children at that time.  This scheme is planned with meticulous attention to ensuring that children are able to revisit key vocabulary again and again to help ensure that children have a clear understanding of the words and are able to use them in their own interactions with others.

For example we know that at around 2 and a half year olds children are learning new verbs such as walking, running, jumping, skipping and adjectives such as fast and slow, so we have planned to use the key Walking Through The Jungle to support this teaching of new vocabulary later in F1 children are challenged with stories such as The Little Red Hen and Jack and Beanstalk where there are most layers to the sequences in the stories, challenging children to use language such as first, next and finally.

The key texts are shared with the children in small groups over a long period of time so that they become really familiar with the story.  This helps them to focus and listen, learn and understand new words, develop early comprehension skills and to develop a love of reading. 

In F1 two key texts are used as the basis for teaching, one will always be a traditional story and the other will reflect the seasons or festivals of the time of year helping to draw together all aspects of the curriculum.  In 2-3s one key text is taught as younger children need more repetition of the same story, this will be linked to early vocabulary development.

As part of our commitment to the Rotherham Loves Reading initiative we use the Children’s Reading Charter to underpin support all our children to develop a love of reading




Every child has the right to...

1.      Read for the joy of it

Children are read to by adults who want to share stories with them. Adults understand that by experiencing the warmth of snuggling up with a book children feel safe and cared for inspiring a deep and meaningful connection between books and joy for our youngest children.

2.   Access NEW books in schools, libraries and bookshops

We provide our own lending library for every child that enters the building, whether they attend 2-3’s, F1 or the Outreach groups.  These libraries are well maintained and restocked with new books annually.

3.   Have advice from a trained librarian or bookseller

We have strong links with the local library.  Librarians visit regularly to read to children and to provide ‘sign up’ days on site so that parents and carers can easily join the library.

We promote all library events through our facebook page and other media such as leaflets and posters.

4.   Own their OWN book

All children receive two brand new books in an academic year, one at Christmas time and one as part of the Reading Month celebrations in March.

5.   See themselves reflected in a book

Our bookshelves show a diverse range of children and families that reflect the cultural capital of our nursery and challenge stereotypes.  We aim to provide key texts in the home languages of the children in our setting.

6.   Be read aloud to

This is our ‘bread and butter’ with children being read to as often as possible.  Family group times are centred around storytelling, either reading stories or making up their own. 

We have regular visitors from the local community to read to children including the librarian, retirees and positive male role models.

7.   Have some choice in what they read

Children are able to choose the stories that they would like adults to read to them from the varied selection provided in the book nooks in the two teaching bases and community room.

8.   Be creative for at least 15 minutes a week

Many of the creative opportunities provided are centred around the key texts.  Children can access a wide range of activities for as long as they wish.  For example, when sharing the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears children are able to use puppets to retell the story, act it out in the home corner, use atelier materials to recreate their favourite characters or scene from the story or make mud porridge using the natural materials in the garden.

9.   See an author event at least ONCE

During Reading Month a local storyteller brings the story of Itchy Bear to life through a dramatic retelling. In addition to this we create our own author events by sharing videos of authors reading their own stories.

10.  Have a planet to read on

As part of PSED educational programme and our Forest School teaching we support children to understand the importance of being responsible for their own actions and for caring for themselves, other children, the classroom and the natural world.