The skills of reading, writing and communicating are at the heart of our curriculum. We intend to create a community of readers and writers who can confidently express their ideas, thoughts and feelings to a range of audiences.
Speaking and listening
Opportunities to express points of view, challenge the views of others, listen respectfully and attentively and speak in extended sentences run through our entire curriculum. We know that children need to be able to communicate with each other at all phases of their lives and learning these skills as soon as possible sets them up for a successful future. In all subject areas, children are expected to justify and explain, reason and challenge. In addition, taking part in discussions through wellbeing and reflection times provides children with the opportunity to take part in interesting debates. New vocabulary is taught, explained and used throughout all areas of the curriculum.
All children have a daily spelling or phonics session, which is taught at a level appropriate to their needs. We use the Letters and Sounds scheme from Nursery to Y2 to ensure there is a systematic approach to the development of children’s phonic knowledge. For children who are not developing their reading skills as fast as they need to, we provide additional daily catch-up opportunities.
All children in Year 1 are assessed through the phonic screen and for any children who do not achieve a pass phonics continues into Year 2.
It is our intent that all children will learn to read and spell effectively. We also use the No Nonsense Spelling scheme to support our teaching of spelling in Y2-6.
As part of our systematic approach to teaching phonics and spelling, we regularly assess pupils to ensure expected or better progress is made. We know that not all children learn to read and write at the same pace, so we have bespoke spelling interventions depending on need.
All classes are aware of the national curriculum expectations for spelling and this is taught both discretely and as part of lessons.
We have a number of children who start our school in different year groups without any English. With these pupils’ specific needs in mind, we run a bespoke EAL group, which focuses on basic language. When pupils are ready, they access phonics in a group with peers of a similar age.
Please find a link to support with saying different sounds.
This will support your child with speaking and using their phonic skills
Alongside learning how to decode words and use spelling patterns, we know that children need to experience reading whole texts. In this way, children will have the chance to apply their decoding skills while improving their comprehension; reading for meaning.
To support this we offer children reading sessions which include opportunities to engage with a text (fiction and non-fiction), answer a range of question types and respond to a text in a creative way.
We follow the Reading Gems scheme.
We use a range of reading schemes that follow a progressive system and we ensure that children have the opportunity to read fully decodable books that are linked to their phonic ability, where appropriate.
Reading for pleasure: Children also enjoy the experience of having a book read to them by an adult and for many it is a highlight if their day! Our main intent is to develop a love of books and a love of reading in our children including whole school events such as World Book Day, visits to Central Manchester Library and book fairs.
We want all children to value books and become fluent readers. This is why every child has a reading book to take home. Pupils also have weekly access to the library where they can choose a book to read.
We also use Accelerated Reader with classes Y2-Y6. Throughout this scheme each student reads a book, takes an online quiz, and gets immediate feedback. Students respond to regular feedback and are motivated to make progress with their reading skills. Together with Star Reading tests it forms a complete reading practice and assessment solution for students of all ages and abilities.
Finally the children have the chance to engage with a range of fiction and non-fiction books through their English lessons and wider curriculum. For example, through research projects in history and geography children will learn about volcanoes and earthquakes, Rainforests, The Romans, The Ancient Greeks and many other exciting topics.
We have a great library which is used by all children and an after school library club.
We provide daily opportunities for children to learn how to spell. Beyond this, we know that children need to learn the skills of being a writer and to allow this to happen, we run daily English lessons. Children are introduced to texts – fiction and non-fiction through our Pathways to Write scheme where the children are exposed to a wide range of ambitious vocabulary around all sorts of themes and ideas. Our intent is to inspire children to write.
‘Pathways to Write’ follows a Mastery approach to English through the programme. Units of work are delivered using high quality texts and children in all year groups are given varied opportunities for writing. Skills are built up through repetition within the units, and children apply these skills in the writing activities provided. Many opportunities for widening children’s vocabulary are given through the Pathways to Write approach.
All children have writing targets which enable them to focus on the particular writing skills they need to develop. The teaching of these skills is at the heart of each literacy unit, with short writing opportunities throughout, building up to a final piece of writing inspired by the text/s studied.
Writing has links to the wider school curriculum and we promote the practise of writing skills through links with our creative curriculum using the targets identified within our English lessons.