We have high standards of literacy throughout our school and provide a language rich environment so that children can improve their skills of speaking and listening, reading, writing, spelling and handwriting. Communication groups such as LEAP (Language Enrichment Activity Programme), VIP(Vocabulary Improvement Programme) and NIP (Narrative Improvement Programme) make our practice inclusive and successful for all children.
Our daily phonics lessons are based on the Read Write Inc programme and Letters and Sounds and are interactive and engaging. They help the children to decode effortlessly so that they can build fluency when reading independently and spell words accurately when writing. Earlybirds small intervention groups before school, support those learners who find phonics challenging.
We teach our children to enjoy writing. They learn to mark make and write legible letters then cursive writing using Disco Dough activities and the Sheffield Structured handwriting scheme. We weave writing throughout the curriculum. Where possible, we provide real purposes to write. Spelling, punctuation and grammar are an integral part of our writing and children learn to use dictionaries and thesauruses. We systematically teach sentence structure and generate sentences first before we write them. Children in Key Stage One learn to proof read and edit their own writing.
The school has adopted a mastery style approach to English using the National Curriculum as a scaffold. This is based on the importance of linking reading and writing, speaking and listening. This begins in Foundation Stage with Time to talk, ‘big book’ shared reading and guided writing. It then progresses through KS1 to include a unit of work based around a class text for each half term. Reading and writing sessions both provide opportunity for children to learn new skills, practise and consolidate and then apply the skill set to a different genre or context.