English Curriculum Statement
Our intent for English at Weyford Nursey and Primary Academy is to ensure that all pupils have access to rich and varied opportunities in a range of reading and writing genres. Throughout the curriculum at Weyford, pupils are taught to read, write, use appropriate and effective vocabulary and listen so that they can communicate effectively with others. Our English Curriculum aims to be a curriculum that is accessible and challenging for all. Taught through quality texts which are ambitious and varied we aim to develop fluency, confidence and enjoyment in reading for all pupils. Writing is an important part of our curriculum and we aim to deliver high quality and exciting lessons which are linked to our inspiring texts including non fiction, narratives, and poetry. All children from Foundation Stage to Year 6 are provided with many opportunities to develop and apply their English skills across all areas of the curriculum.
Our curriculum allows for a progressive approach where attainment is assessed regularly and gaps in learning are addressed effectively for all pupils
In addition to daily literacy lessons, we have also implemented daily phonics and spelling sessions for all children across the primary phase
In EYFS and KS1 phonics is taught through high quality teaching with the focus being on the acquisition of phonics knowledge, language comprehension and the skills to communicate. Children have access to phonetically matched books which link to the phonics knowledge they are learning. In KS2 spellings are taught through the programme Spelling Shed which focusses on the embedding of spelling rules.
All children have a thirty-minute Guided Reading session where we use a wide variety of quality texts and resources to motivate and inspire our children. We also provide a wealth of enrichment opportunities, including: World Book Week and Oracy competitions. In our reading sessions pupils read for pleasure and books are used to enhance and support learning and through staff modelling we aim to promote a love of reading for pleasure. To support fluency, smaller groups have been set up to allow them to continue to develop a range of reading skills.
Teachers ensure that they model good speaking, listening, writing and reading skills to support pupils in their development of language and vocabulary skills.
Writing is purposeful and interesting with good quality hooks to engage the children. We build upon previous learning to develop the skills they will need as writers.
Pupils will leave Weyford Academy with the essential reading, writing and communication skills that they need to progress, develop and achieve in life.
At Weyford Nursery and Primary, early reading is taught using synthetic phonics as the main approach. Pupils are systematically taught phonemes, how to blend the sounds and how to segment the sounds in order to write words. Children are taught to use phonics as their first approach to reading and spelling unknown words. In addition to this, children are taught high frequency words, words which do not completely follow the rules of phonics.
As a school we follow the government published programme ‘Letters and Sounds’. Phonics is taught whole class daily for 15-20 minutes within key stage 1. Teachers use a variety of techniques to make these sessions multi-sensory. Children who require extra support in acquiring their sounds will be given this in addition to their daily phonics lesson.
Children in year 1 will undertake the government’s statutory phonics test at the end of the year. For more information on this please click on the link below.
From year 2-6 as a school we follow the ‘Spelling Shed’ spelling programme. The focus of the programme is on the teaching of spelling, exploring the spelling conventions – patterns and rules; but integral to the teaching is the opportunity to promote the learning of spellings, including statutory words, common exceptions and personal spellings.
Reading Key stage 1
To support children in their early reading, all our reading books are colour banded. Your child will be assessed by their teacher and be given a colour band to choose their home reading book from.
Reading Key stage 2
Each child is informally assessed by the class teacher when entering key stage 2 and a colour is allocated to the child dependant on their reading age.
Children are encouraged to change these reading books and are independent in doing so. These books enable children to develop their phonic skills as well as comprehension abilities. Each band includes books from a range of reading schemes allowing children to experience a wide range of genres.
To develop their reading skills children will participate in Guided Reading Sessions. These sessions provide teachers with the opportunity to teach children reading and comprehension skills. During these guided sessions children will learn how to analyse texts, answer questions and use non-fiction texts. Independent jobs during guided reading enable children to continue to develop these skills and access online books using the computers and ipads
At the heart of our reading curriculum is developing children’s love of reading. Our library contains books from a variety of genres and caters for all interests. As a school we believe it is important children are independent in choosing which book they take home whatever reading ability they may be.
Within key stage one each class has a book corner that is inviting and changed regularly to meet children’s interests. The book corners are stocked with books from the library and will contain books from the same author allowing children to become familiar with different authors.
We believe in providing our children with writing opportunities that are purposeful and relevant to their interests. To inspire children to write teachers use a variety of techniques such as visual literacy, literature, school trips and drama. Children are taught English in their classrooms and their individual needs are supported.
Our English curriculum is based is text based and the texts are chosen for their challenge and interest levels. The emphasis of our curriculum allows us to teach grammar and spelling in greater depth, which enables children to gain a greater understanding of the spoken and written language. Each unit of work have a clear purpose, audience and form. The children themselves are asked to decide on who and how they would like to present their work as they move up through the key stages. Teaching the children to write a variety of ways allows the school to promote high standards of language and literacy.
Children’s writing is supported by working walls in every classroom, which illustrate the learning journey during a teaching unit. It enables children to see examples of the genre they are writing, provide them with some success criteria and key word support.
Within school our approach to handwriting is cursive , which begins in year R and moves up throughout the school. The children learn how to form their letters correctly, in addition to the correct way to join. It also focusses on ascenders and descenders being formed correctly.