English at Wybourn Community Primary School
English is taught daily to ensure that when children leave Wybourn Community Primary School, they are literate and ready for the next stage in their education. Low baselines mean that considerable time must be allocated to the teaching of English and it forms the core of all teaching at Wybourn Community Primary School.
Teachers cover a wide range of aspects of the English curriculum every day. As children move through the school, their speaking, listening, reading and writing is developed through different genres of narrative, non-fiction and poetry. Alongside this, their skills grow in the areas of vocabulary, grammar, punctuation, spelling and handwriting. We also use 'Progression in Language Structures' to develop children's functional language across the curriculum.
We are developing our reading curriculum around the principles of evidence-led practise, particularly from the OU RFP website in conjunction with Theresa Cremin and with advice from Whiston Worrygoose Literacy Hub. It is our intention that through studying a range of quality yet challenging fiction, non-fiction and poetry, pupils become more expert as they progress through the curriculum, which develops pupils’ language capabilities, supports pupils to develop fluent reading capabilities and teaches reading comprehension strategies through modelling and supported practise. This also links with our wider curriculum provided by Cornerstones.
Our early readers are taught through Little Wandle phonics. This is a rigorous regime of phonics lessons delivered by teaching staff and supported by teaching assistants. Children are continuously assessed and extra sessions are timetabled to ensure children receive the best opportunities to progress and become fluent readers.
From Year 2 onwards, reading skills are taught through book study. Each theme has a linked book which the children read with the teacher and use to learn comprehension and fluency skills each day. Chosen texts relate to theme to provide extra background knowledge and are good quality with a range of challenging vocabulary.
Children working on phonics are allocated a phonetically decodable book to read independently and at home. Once children become fluent readers, they progress to choosing from a range of books within their classroom. Children are coached in their choices and supported to read a variety of different styles of text. We also make available our Starbooks library which visits a different year group each week. This gives the children access to a range of books they can read outside the classroom.
We are currently taking part in the Chasing Futures library project and developing a new library system in school. While this is a work in progress, each class has a class library provided by the Schools Library Service. In addition, we have the Starbooks project which consists of areas around school children can choose a book and read, this also includes two trolleys with books for children to read at break time.
Opportunities for reading:
Focused reading groups
Book week – yearly event promoting reading which includes drop everything and read time.
Class reading for pleasure time
In writing teachers use the Theresa Heathcote writing sequence to plan and prepare engaging activities to foster children’s English skills. This runs alongside our writing progression document to ensure children experience different text types and genres. We believe that children need good quality examples (WAGOLLS) from which to analyse and base their own writing. Skills are taught for each text type and writing is orally rehearsed.
Children work towards being independent and coherent writers by working with peers orally rehearsing and using slow write techniques to develop skills.
In handwriting we use the Martin Handford scheme throughout school. Children use this in all their work and are encouraged to join their handwriting by the end of year 2.
In Key Stage 1, spelling is taught through phonics as part of Little Wandle. Once children have progressed to the end of Little Wandle they begin learning a variety of spelling patterns as set out in the National Curriculum. Children will receive a set of spellings each week and will learn the spelling pattern and be given daily opportunities to practise their spellings. Children will be aided by the use of spelling zappers and have the opportunity to play different spelling games each half term.
Visits and visitors
Throughout the year we plan and timetable a variety of special activities to encourage children to read for pleasure. We usually have a Book Week in School to celebrate World Book Day, where children receive their book token. We have regular virtual author visits and take part in the Sheffield Children’s book award in most year groups. This culminates in a visit to the awards ceremony at the Crucible theatre for children that have cast votes.
Teachers plan on a weekly basis based on a quality text which links to the theme the children are studying. As per the writing framework, teachers plan lessons which immerse children in the genre, analyse good examples, and teaches skills required to write, draft and edit their work. On average children learn two text types per half term with a range being taught across the year.
Through the teaching of systematic phonics, our aim is for children to become fluent readers by the end of Key Stage One. This way, children can focus on developing their fluency and comprehension as they move through the school. Attainment in reading is measured using the statutory assessments at the end of Key Stage One and Two. These results are measured against the reading attainment of children nationally.
• Phonics Screening Test at the end of Year 1.
• Half termly checks to ensure that pupils are placed within the correct teaching group and that progress is being made. Catch up sessions are then targeted.
The school measures impact through:
Half termly fluency assessments
Termly Headstart reading comprehension tests
Previous SATs papers in year 2 and year 6 to measure attainment against national standardised scores
Pupil Voice to assess learning
Attainment in writing is measured consistently throughout the year. At the three assessment checkpoints, progress is tracked, using writing statements which have been taken from the National Curriculum. For those children who have yet to access the Year 1 statements, prekeystage statements are used. Termly moderations take place to quality assure judgements made. These are either in house, or as part of a network of local schools.
End of Key Stage writing: teachers will assess a selection of pieces of writing in Years 2 and Year 6, using this to inform reported Teacher assessment judgements. Exemplification materials are used to support judgements made
In KS2, children will be taught to self-correct, edit and improve their writing and that of others. Evidence of this can be found in books, in different colour pen.