Our English lessons develop pupils’ spoken language, reading, writing and vocabulary. Literacy is taught in a cross-curricular way, linking up with other areas of the curriculum. We teach our pupils to speak clearly, to convey their ideas fluently and confidently and to ask questions. Their vocabulary is developed systematically.
Our pupils are encouraged to read for pleasure and to read widely. We use the Oxford Reading Tree Scheme and the Letters and Sounds phonics programme. Phonic awareness helps the development of reading by segmenting and blending sounds. The children will be heard reading individually and in groups. The guided reading sessions cover both fiction and non-fiction books. Guided reading also develops the children`s comprehension skills. A range of ICT programmes are used to enhance learning. Parents are given clear expectations about reading at home.
To support children in moving towards independent writing we provide a range of activities including use of film and imagery, modelled, shared and guided writing, peer editing and discussion. We use talk for writing to encourage pupils to express their ideas, exchange ideas and to develop more sophisticated vocabulary. We provide opportunities for writing for purpose and we encourage pupils to see themselves as authors. We promote the status of written work by providing opportunities for children`s writing to be published and read by real audiences. Handwriting sessions are incorporated into the English lessons.
Drama is used as a key tool in developing oral skills, vocabulary development, building confidence and self- esteem, and as an essential tool in developing imaginative, expressive, and persuasive spoken and written language. ‘Hot seating’, and ‘response in role’ drama techniques used in literacy lessons aid the development of speaking and listening, reading and writing skills. Imaginative role play is fundamental to developing the whole child, not just in Early Years and KS1 education, but also as the children develop, and our curriculum provides opportunities to perform to wider audiences through assemblies and events around key festivals. There are increasing opportunities for our pupils to perform as they progress through the school.
The children enjoy putting their literacy skills into action at our special school events, including readathons, spelling bees, book fairs and author visits. World Book Day provides another exciting opportunity for us to enthuse our young learners, with the whole school taking part in themed events. Weekly class assemblies, school productions and ‘buddy’ reading activities also develop speaking and listening skills and help the children to gain confidence by performing for an audience.