The English curriculum
English is taught through the principles of the new National Curriculum. This involves the children being introduced to a variety of different texts and styles of writing throughout each year. Each unit of work is influenced by the Big Question topic and/or curriculum suggestions and is broken into phases of reading, exploring, spoken language and writing.
Children are given opportunities to develop their confidence with spoken language directed to a variety of audiences through a range of activities across the curriculum including drama, assemblies and different types of class discussion.
Children are encouraged to read regularly from a variety of literature, to discuss their reading and to form critical judgements both in written and oral form.
A 20-30 minutes guided reading session takes place in every key stage 1 and key stage 2 class daily. Children are organised into ability groups (coloured level bands) within their class and directly taught reading skills as well as completing other reading tasks throughout the week.
Children are issued with reading books to take home and are encouraged to practise the reading skills they learn in class at home with parents and carers. This may include keeping a journal as they get older.
Children are given the opportunity to write in a variety of forms. They are encouraged to match their style and responses according to audience and purpose, as well as expressing thoughts, feelings and ideas in writing. This includes development and focus on spellings, punctuation, grammar (SPaG) and handwriting.
We have adopted the ‘Letters and Sounds’ phonics approach. We have chosen to teach letters and sounds to enable children to:
- Develop spoken language skills
- Recognise graphemes and corresponding phonemes
- Decode and blend for reading
- Encode for spelling
- Develop recognition of familiar words on sight.
Support for Spelling is taught from Year 2 onwards and specific phonics and spelling groups are taught by ability in Lower Key Stage 2.