English

Is the vehicle by which all areas of learning are brought to life. It provides the power to communicate and to share, to convey our inner most thoughts, feelings and desires. A true love of English brings rich rewards from enjoying the rhythm, repetition and patterns of language to gain entry into others imaginations through story, poetry and drama and in discovering new knowledge from reference, information and factual accounts.

Skilful story telling keeps us spellbound and play encourages us to test out our use of language through imitation and rehearsal. English is vital to opening up learning of all kinds and across all subject boundaries.

“Studying English literature at school was my first, and probably my biggest, step towards mental freedom and independence. It was like falling in love with life.”       Ian McEwan, Novelist

READING

We believe that reading is a partnership between the school, home and our wider community.

“Reading is a life skill it feeds children’s imagination and opens up a treasure house of wonder and joy for curious minds.” The National Curriculum 2013.

Year R

Reading is integral to our rich and diverse curriculum and begins as soon as children enter our school in Year R developing their use of language through role play, familiar stories, storytelling and child initiated play.

Phonics is key to successful reading. Our early readers will begin their reading journey through the structure of the ‘Letters and Sounds’ programme. Initial sounds of the alphabet are taught and used in a variety of ways to enable children to blend sounds together to read individual words. As the children progress through the year they learn to recognise and read digraphs (/oo/ /ai/) and trigraphs (/igh/ /ear/) as they develop their fluency to read whole sentences. Running alongside the teaching of phonics children improve their visual memory skills and sight vocabulary by learning key words that cannot be read phonetically e.g. was, the, said.

Year 1

Children enrich and enhance their love of reading by broadening and deepening their experiences through different genres which further develops their fluency and understanding.

The reading journey continues in Year 1 building on the phonics foundation taught in Year R by learning alternative phonic patterns (e.g. play / plane / rain) and being able to apply this strategy to decode unfamiliar words. Children expand their knowledge of different word uses and how it affects the meaning and their understanding of the text; such as tenses being changed by suffixes e.g. jump – jumping – jumped.

Daily reading and re-reading of familiar texts improves children’s fluency enabling them to be confident readers who can discuss and share their opinions are, wherever possible, integrated within the current project.

Our Reading Strategies

  • Sound out and blend the word.
  • Chunk longer words into syllables.
  • Skip the word and then go back.
  • Read the sentence again and check it makes sense!

Year 1

Children enrich and enhance their love of reading by broadening and deepening their experiences through different genres which further develops their fluency and understanding.

The reading journey continues in Year 1 building on the phonics foundation taught in Year R by learning alternative phonic patterns (e.g. play / plane / rain) and being able to apply this strategy to decode unfamiliar words. Children expand their knowledge of different word uses and how it affects the meaning and their understanding of the text; such as tenses being changed by suffixes e.g. jump – jumping – jumped.

Daily reading and re-reading of familiar texts improves children’s fluency enabling them to be confident readers who can discuss and share their opinions are, wherever possible, integrated within the current project.

Further development of reading strategies continue to improve our children’s comprehension, sight vocabulary and expression enabling them to tackle more challenging texts.

Year 2

Throughout Year 2 children continue to develop an increased independence of the application of reading strategies, as well as their ability to make sense of what they have read and through the use of inference, gain knowledge and understanding of meaning beyond the text.

Building on their previous phonic knowledge children learn about the most frequently used rules that govern word construction and use, such as suffixes, plurals and word exceptions. Children extend their knowledge and understanding of how tenses are changed by endings in words e.g. -ness / -ful / -less / -ly and that some words can be spelt in different ways, their/there/they’re, and begin to understand their use in different contexts.

Children are introduced to increasingly complex texts that create a sense of suspense, humour and interest which strengthens and sustains their stamina to read at length.

By the end of Year 2 children are increasingly using their reading skills to research, refine and present their findings to a range of audiences.

WRITING

Our curriculum projects inspire children to fully engage with their writing, have a clear awareness of audience and an acknowledgement of the power and emotion that their writing can invoke. Through various stimuli, children are inspired to create their own purposes to write within an atmosphere of mutual respect where all writing is valued.

Year R

As soon as children enter our school they are encouraged to write through the extensive and enriching role play opportunities within the Early Years environment. Early writing is a powerful means of communication and may take the form of mark making through child initiated play.

Throughout the year children are taught to apply their phonic knowledge to write initial sounds in words, progressing on to CVC words (consonant vowel consonant words e.g. cat / hen) then rehearsing and recording simple sentences.

An important element of early writing at our school is to develop children’s fine motor skills. It is essential for them to develop an appropriate pencil grip that will enable them to write letters of the alphabet using the correct formation.

(link to a handwriting webpage). By the end of the year children will be able to construct and write simple sentences and phrases often extending the meaning by using conjunctions such as ‘and’ ‘but’.

Year 1

Building on the oral skills developed throughout Year R, children begin to write using different genre features such as, instructions, stories, recounts and reports, increasingly becoming more aware of their audience. As their writing develops across Year 1, more sophisticated punctuation is taught and used to give shape, understanding and excitement to their writing. As their writing develops they show a creativity and fluency in engaging with the reader to communicate their ideas.

As early spellers children use their increasingly developed phonic knowledge to communicate effectively in writing but as they are taught to apply spelling rules to words that are unable to be sounded out phonetically (was, they, have) they begin to understand when such rules apply.

Year 2

As children enter year two they are able to sustain longer periods of writing as they begin to master the many writing conventions. They use increasingly more sophisticated vocabulary, punctuation and humour to lead a reader through a series of developed ideas that move away from their own experience, and more into imaginative themes.

As children are taught more complex spelling rules they begin to understand and apply rules such as prefixes and suffixes (changing the meaning of the word happy/unhappy/happily/happiest), contractions (they’re, can’t, didn’t) and ‘silent’ letters (knee, write, little).

By the end of Year 2 children are able to evaluate their writing, often against their own generated ‘success criteria’. By using simple editing skills they are able to improve and enhance their original piece of writing, through alternative word choices, appropriate punctuation and correct tense.

Further development of reading strategies continue to improve our children’s comprehension, sight vocabulary and expression enabling them to tackle more challenging texts.

Year 2

Throughout Year 2 children continue to develop an increased independence of the application of reading strategies, as well as their ability to make sense of what they have read and through the use of inference, gain knowledge and understanding of meaning beyond the text.

Building on their previous phonic knowledge children learn about the most frequently used rules that govern word construction and use, such as suffixes, plurals and word exceptions. Children extend their knowledge and understanding of how tenses are changed by endings in words e.g. -ness / -ful / -less / -ly and that some words can be spelt in different ways, their/there/they’re, and begin to understand their use in different contexts.

Children are introduced to increasingly complex texts that create a sense of suspense, humour and interest which strengthens and sustains their stamina to read at length.

By the end of Year 2 children are increasingly using their reading skills to research, refine and present their findings to a range of audiences.

WRITING

Our curriculum projects inspire children to fully engage with their writing, have a clear awareness of audience and an acknowledgement of the power and emotion that their writing can invoke. Through various stimuli, children are inspired to create their own purposes to write within an atmosphere of mutual respect where all writing is valued.

Year R

As soon as children enter our school they are encouraged to write through the extensive and enriching role play opportunities within the Early Years environment. Early writing is a powerful means of communication and may take the form of mark making through child initiated play.

Throughout the year children are taught to apply their phonic knowledge to write initial sounds in words, progressing on to CVC words (consonant vowel consonant words e.g. cat / hen) then rehearsing and recording simple sentences.

An important element of early writing at our school is to develop children’s fine motor skills. It is essential for them to develop an appropriate pencil grip that will enable them to write letters of the alphabet using the correct formation.

(link to a handwriting webpage). By the end of the year children will be able to construct and write simple sentences and phrases often extending the meaning by using conjunctions such as ‘and’ ‘but’.

Year 1

Building on the oral skills developed throughout Year R, children begin to write using different genre features such as, instructions, stories, recounts and reports, increasingly becoming more aware of their audience. As their writing develops across Year 1, more sophisticated punctuation is taught and used to give shape, understanding and excitement to their writing. As their writing develops they show a creativity and fluency in engaging with the reader to communicate their ideas.

As early spellers children use their increasingly developed phonic knowledge to communicate effectively in writing but as they are taught to apply spelling rules to words that are unable to be sounded out phonetically (was, they, have) they begin to understand when such rules apply.

Year 2

As children enter year two they are able to sustain longer periods of writing as they begin to master the many writing conventions. They use increasingly more sophisticated vocabulary, punctuation and humour to lead a reader through a series of developed ideas that move away from their own experience, and more into imaginative themes.

As children are taught more complex spelling rules they begin to understand and apply rules such as prefixes and suffixes (changing the meaning of the word happy/unhappy/happily/happiest), contractions (they’re, can’t, didn’t) and ‘silent’ letters (knee, write, little).

By the end of Year 2 children are able to evaluate their writing, often against their own generated ‘success criteria’. By using simple editing skills they are able to improve and enhance their original piece of writing, through alternative word choices, appropriate punctuation and correct tense.

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