Intent: Why do we teach what we teach?
At Bledington, we are dedicated to encouraging all children to be passionate about reading and writing through a quality Literacy (English) curriculum which is built on the principle of skills and shows a clear pathway shown through our school progression maps. We are determined that ALL children will become highly competent readers and writers to prepare them for their future beyond Primary School. We work together with parents and carers to encourage pupils to reach their full potential. We teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others and, through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. It is our intention to immerse pupils in the wonders of quality texts to instil a love for reading, a passion for discovery and a confidence to explore their imagination.
Implementation: How do we teach what we teach?
During their time at Bledington, all pupils will be exposed to a high-quality education where English is embedded and merged across the wider curriculum to motivate and inspire our children. Teachers ensure that cross curricular links with concurrent topic work are woven into our planning. They also produce carefully designed English sequences which map out text-led learning journeys, with a clear starting point, development and modelling of skills and a final written piece to show learnt skills and knowledge. Tasks are designed to challenge all learners with support in place for those moving at a slower or faster pace.
English consists of:
We recognise the importance of nurturing a culture where children take pride in their writing, can write clearly & accurately and adapt their language and style for a range of contexts. The teaching of writing consists of two dimensions; transcript (spelling and handwriting) and composition (articulating ideas and structuring them).
A secure phonic knowledge is key to children’s success as both readers and writers. Learners are taught and encouraged to spell quickly and accurately through knowledge and understanding of phonics, word structure, spelling patterns and word recognition.
Reading across our school is multi-dimensional and one of our priorities is helping children read and develop their all-important comprehension skills. We develop and secure phonic knowledge and show how to use this to decode unfamiliar words. We encourage the importance of learning the ever-increasing range of familiar written words (Sight Vocabulary) and fluency. Pupils are taught to read with purpose, recognise that there are different types of text, understand the prose of fiction and non-fiction text, learn the ability to adapt their approach to reading when necessary and use reading to support their acquisition of knowledge and vocabulary across all subjects.
Handwriting is an essential life skill and it contributes to reading fluency because it activates visual perception of letters. It assists success in other subjects, because good handwriting has a positive impact on showing communication, knowledge and learning. Our pupils are taught accurate formation, correct starting & finishing points, awareness of size, spacing, legibility, fluidity and writing stamina using the skills based progression by Letter-Join. All pupils will be encouraged to use sharp pencils to enable them to develop and practise their skills. Year 5 & 6 will have the opportunity to progress to using pens when appropriate, at the discretion of their class teacher.
The spoken language underpins the development of reading and writing. The quality and variety of language pupils hear and speak are vital for developing vocabulary & grammar and the understanding linked to reading & writing. We want to inspire children to be confident in the art of speaking & listening and use discussion to communicate, organise their ideas and develop further their learning.
Impact: How do we know what pupils have learnt and how well they have learnt it?
We strive to ensure that our pupils' progress is in line with or exceeds their potential when we consider the varied starting points of all our children. We measure this using the assessment criteria outlined on Insight, NFER testing for reading, and STA Assessment guidelines, whilst always considering the age-related expectations for each year group. We monitor weekly spelling test and dictation results, so we can adapt teaching to individual needs. In reading and writing, we monitor and check progression of skills throughout the year through target sessions, evaluations and during adventure writes or guided reading lessons. Pupil are encouraged to showcase their skills at every opportunity. Pupils will also participate in discussions with staff members to know what they have learnt, identify how they have progressed and know their next steps. We will identify moderation pieces, complete book scrutiny’s and participate in professional discussions to identify the impact of teaching and learning.
Our English curriculum will ensure pupils are:
English is important for pupils as it broadens their minds, develops emotional skills and improves the quality of life. Pupils will benefit from our balanced and enriching approach and will be academically prepared for life beyond primary school and throughout their educational journey.
Unfortunately not the ones with chocolate chips.
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