Reading spine – Doug Lemov inspired list & reading lessons

What's included?

Reading spine for EYFS-Y6, plus sample reading lesson Powerpoints

Key Stage

KS1, KS2


Years R-6


This reading spine from Layton Primary School uses four text types. In his book Reading Reconsidered, Doug Lemov says that children should have access to five types of text in order to read with confidence.

These are complex beyond a lexical level and demand more from the reader than other types of books. To fit the school’s context and pupils’ needs, staff adapted his suggestions, enabling them to include a more diverse range of text types.

  • Classic text
    This involves texts that are over 50 years old and feature vocabulary and syntax that is vastly different and typically more complex than texts written today.
  • Non-linear time sequences
    In these books, time doesn’t unfold consistently. It may move in fits and starts or double back. These books need careful introduction and may need to be read more than once.
  • Narratively complex
    These books may feature unreliable narrators, multiple narrators or non-human narrators. They may also feature multiple plot lines.
  • Impressionist
    Poetry often features in this category. Pupils need to assemble meaning via nuances, hints, uncertainties and clues.

Teachers choose a text from the reading spine, which is a working document, and read this book every day for 15 minutes, always making sure to finish the book.

On Monday and Friday, the text is studied through a quick quiz, recap questions and VIPERS questions.

This reading spine download contains:

  • Reading spine for EYFS-Year 6
  • Reading lesson plan PowerPoints on the following topics: Queen Victoria (Y2); the Stone Age (Y3); Roman Empire expansion (Y4); science (Y5); WW2 (Y6)

Claire Jones is now headteacher at Eccleston Primary School in Chorley. Follow her on Twitter at @clairejones_ht. Visit her blog at Read more about how Layton Primary developed a consistent whole-school approach to reading that will prepare pupils for university.

Reading spine inspired by Doug Lemov
Reading spine – Doug Lemov inspired list & reading lessons

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