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In KS2, we use RIC in Guided Reading sessions to support the progress of reading. Guided Reading is taught four times a week, with each session lasting 30 minutes.


At the start of each Guided Reading lesson, a short age appropriate text is introduced to the class. This is an opportunity to teach and model reading techniques such as skimming, scanning and inference. Children have a copy of the text one between two and the class teacher reads the text aloud to the class. The text could be the book currently being used in English lessons, part of a class book being read, a poem or a non-fiction article. The texts vary across the year to ensure that children are introduced to a wide range of text types and authors.


After the text has been read aloud, there is a whole class follow up discussion on the text where the children answer centred around three questions (RIC). This is a verbal discussion. However, each group will record their RIC responses in writing, once a week as part of the Guided Reading carousel, with teacher support (see below). There is an additional challenge question (T) should the children need it. These questions are:



Retrieve – This question is something that all children can access and answer. It is something very clear because this question helps children to realise that many reading questions are obvious – they just have to retrieve it. It might be a number, a colour something the children have to count or something they must spot or listen out for. Often, the key words needed to retrieve the answer are written in the question. Retrieving information is not a test of memory. The answers will be in the text.


Write down 3 things you are told about the oak tree.

How many birds are in the video?

What colour is Juliet’s dress?

How many ballet shoes are made each year? When does the film get released?

Find the simile



Interpret - This question requires the children to use clues from actions or events. The answer should not be obvious  but should require some deduction and/or inference Questions about feelings or reasons behind actions are quite common. With a sensible guess, children should be able to have a good attempt at this question. Children have to unlock the answers from the clues given. Writers often use clues to imply meaning in texts. A good reader works like a detective, using the clues to work out missing information. This information is added to what is already known in order to make sense of the text. Children should be encouraged to give evidence or use quotes to support their answers.


What does the captain’s appearance tell you about his character?

Why did he go down that road?

How is the rabbit feeling?

How did they get out?

How do you know the boy is frightened?

How can you tell Maria was very keen to get to the party?

Why was Tom triumphant?




This is the hardest question to write and answer! This question is always be about the creator’s choice, NOT the choice of the character. Questions about a character’s choice would be Interpret questions because the children use clues from actions and events.

Children are asked to think about why the writer has used certain words and phrase, and to think about the impact that has on the reader. Children need to understand that writers deliberately choose these. They use imagery to create vivid images in the readers’ mind. This could be through precise words (e.g. willow rather than tree) or through figurative language (simile, metaphor, alliteration, onomatopoeia and personification). This question should encourage children to think about why the creator made that choice so they can transfer this skill to thinking about the author’s choice in books. These questions also encourage the children to consider the effect on the reader/viewer. These questions should focus on language choices.


Why did the writer use the word ‘staggered’ rather than ‘walked’?

What effect do you think the writer tries to create by writing: Something said nothing. Something grunted. Somebody-something made a noise … ?

How has the writer created suspense?

Why did the director use this music?

How has the composer made you feel scared?

Why did the producer put the information in text instead of spoken word?

Why has the writer included a diagram in this poster?




This question is a challenge question and requires the children to offer an opinion and to use some background knowledge. Here there is no right or wrong answer,  providing the children can justify what they say. Children should also be encouraged to return to the text and link their thinking back to that.


Did the man get what he deserved?

Is it a good thing to keep secrets?

Is it ever ok to lie?

Is the black hole good or bad?