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  • Francois Walker

Mastery when teaching reading

Updated: Feb 9, 2023

The concept of a mastery approach isn't new to schools. With the aim of providing all pupils with the opportunity to access a well thought through reading curriculum which empowers all pupils, teachers have applied the concept of Mastery to the teaching of reading. Why does it work?


When implementing a whole class approach to the teaching of reading it is essential that teachers support pupils by breaking teaching down into the smallest teaching steps. This is highly effective in ensuring pupils achieve the aims of the lesson. A smart teaching strategy is using an 'I do, we do, you do' cycle in the lesson.


I do, we do, you do. Use these teaching steps to help you to support pupils if used throughout the lesson.

To help you visualise the use of an I do, we do, you do approach I will define each step and then provide a short script to help teachers visualise the use of this in a reading lesson.


I do, we do, you do

I do - In this step the class teacher is modelling an aspect of the lesson to pupils.

We do - Here pupils are copying what the teacher did. They do this in pairs, working with their learning partner.

You do - Pupils now work independently, usually in silence, to use the knowledge they have gained to complete a short task.


Sample script using the I do, We do, You do approach.


I do

Class teacher: Reads the question to the class. (Hands pointed to the chest using to show that it's the teachers turn.)

Pupils: Listening to the question being read.

We do

Class teacher: Moves their hands out to initiate reading the question in choral.

Pupils: Read the question in choral.

You do

Class teacher: Uses the Turn To Your Partner (TTYP) silent signal to indicate that pupils must discuss the answer with their learning partner.

Pupils: Pupils discuss the answer with their partner, often using sentence stems to encourage the use of standard English.



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