Our vision for all our pupils is, “Be all you can be!”
Our English Curriculum follows the guidelines set out in the New National Curriculum. It develops children’s ability to listen, speak, read and write for a wide range of purposes and we use language to build our view and opinion of the world and our community.
The aims of teaching English, as outlined in the National Curriculum are to ensure that all pupils:
- Read easily, fluently and with good understanding
- Develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information
- Acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language
- Appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
- Write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for range of contexts, purposes and audiences
- Use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas
- Are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.
The exploration and enjoyment of the English language is our priority and we value all its aspects: speaking, listening, reading and writing.
We intend to reach the above aims by following a mixture of schemes including ‘Read, Write, Inc’, ‘The Power of Reading’, ‘Literacy shed’ planning and short films. Plans have been carefully mapped out in long term planning and centred -where possible- around a quality book linked to the children’s Topic learning.
We teach phonics daily in homogenous groups through the Read, Write, Inc Ruth Miskin phonics programme. It is a systematic, fast-paced approach to teaching phonics. The children read decodable books that match their phonics level. Whilst this is happening, the rest of the school will be using the long-term planning from classroom secrets for: spelling, punctuation, grammar; reading comprehension and handwriting sessions (Nelson handwriting). In addition to this, a daily English lesson is taught.
Speaking and listening
Talking is fundamental to learning and children get the opportunity to develop both the confidence and skills to speak clearly, confidently and with expression, through planned learning opportunities across the curriculum. We encourage drama, group discussions, poetry and role-play.
Across the school, children are exposed and have access to a wide range of high quality texts to develop learning in all curriculum areas. Reading to the children across all ages is positively encouraged with teachers sharing good quality and diverse fiction to the children -at a point -during the school day. We have a reading buddy system in place where KS2 children get to read and share books to EYFS/KS1.
The teaching of reading begins in the foundation stage following the Read, Write Inc. programme of study. This continues until they are confident and fluent readers. Fast track tutoring is given to children who need extra practice. When children become Free Readers, they have access to a range of high quality texts in their own classrooms. Whole class reading takes place within the English lesson and is tailored to children’s individual needs.
In writing, we want our children to be adventurous with vocabulary choices and to acquire strategies to enable them to become independent learners in English (spelling rules and patterns and how to tackle unfamiliar words when reading). Children discuss and present their ideas to each other by talking, being able to elaborate and explain themselves clearly, make presentations and participate in debates. All classes have working walls aiding children and guiding them through the process of Reading and Analysing, Gathering Content, Planning and Writing. Editing is a very important part of the journey and children are taught to draft and redraft their work before presenting their final pieces. Teaching a range of genres across the school (progressing in difficulty) both in English and other curriculum areas; resulting in pupils being exposed to, and knowledgeable about, literary styles, authors and genres. They can express preferences and give opinions, supported by evidence, about different texts.
The impact is measured by book looks, gathering pupil voice, termly assessments and moderation.
Long term we want our children
- To be confident in the art of speaking and listening and to be able to use discussion to communicate and further their learning.
- To be able to read fluently both for pleasure and to further their learning.
- To enjoy writing across a range of genres.
- Of all abilities will be able to succeed in all English lessons because work will be appropriately scaffolded.
- To have a wide vocabulary and be adventurous with vocabulary choices within their writing.
- To have a good knowledge of how to adapt their writing based on the context and audience.
- To leave primary school being able to effectively apply spelling rules and patterns they have been taught.
- To make good and better progress from their starting points to achieve their full potential.