- Teaching of reading starts early in EYFS, where the children have short, focused daily phonics sessions as part of the Read Write Inc (RWI) programme of systematic synthetic phonics. This continues throughout the year, becoming more formalised from term 3 (January). Opportunities for reading with an adult and listening to adults read are made as often as possible and a love of books is encouraged from the beginning.
- The RWI programme is used daily throughout KS1, with children working in small groups with a trained adult. As part of this programme, children use their phonological awareness to read real and ‘alien’ words and to write the corresponding graphemes for each sound.
- In KS2, if children have not completed the RWI programme, they work in small intervention groups or one-to-one with an adult in order to close the gap.
- Throughout the school, from Y1 to Y6, there are daily reading skills lessons which aim to develop the children’s reading skills in all areas – decoding the text, understanding word meanings from context and comprehension including inference skills. Books are chosen at a level appropriate for the majority of the class with provision being made for children with additional needs.
- In order to further develop a love of reading, children are read to daily by the teacher in a timetabled session and children take part in a reading buddy scheme. Books are chosen for interest and may therefore be beyond the actual reading ability of some of the class. Books are also available in the classrooms that specifically connect to the current foundation subject topics and these are displayed so that children are encouraged to read them and develop their knowledge and understanding of the topic. In addition to this, Library competitions also run termly and the school takes part in the annual young reader’s programme funded by the National Literacy Trust.
- Home reading is strongly encouraged and parent meetings and letters keep parents and carers informed of the school’s expectations and provision.
- Home readers are banded following the RWI colour banding system so that children are given books they can read with confidence. They are expected to reread them and become familiar with them. In KS1, children take home the RWI book they are working on, a matched RWI story book and a colour banded book of their own choice. Higher attaining readers can take a banded book and another book from the class library. This can be a book that parents can share with their child. In KS2, children take home a banded book and can choose another from the library which can be shared at home with parents. In this way, independent reading at home is a manageable challenge and is supplemented with other books to increase the enjoyment of reading a wider range of texts.
See documents below which share the teaching sequence and year group coverage.
- In EYFS, children are taught the letter graphemes as they learn the sounds in RWI and are encouraged to have a go at writing by sounding out words and recording the sounds they hear. This takes place during teacher led sessions and there are also plenty of opportunities during child initiated sessions, with a range of materials and writing prompts available.
- From Year 1 to Year 6, the teaching of writing is simultaneously connected to the current curriculum project so that children are immersed in the subject and they are provided with a range of stimuli including relevant vocabulary, books, PowerPoint images, pictures etc
- We follow the most recent National Curriculum Framework for guidance as to what is taught in each year group and, from this, have devised a specific structure for our school, detailing end of year expectations year by year. Units of work are based on different genres, and a purpose and audience for each piece of writing is decided from the outset. We ensure progression in complexity of tasks and expectations year on year
- All staff have been trained and follow our school handwriting policy and children practise their handwriting skills throughout the school day. We regularly celebrate the examples of excellent effort in handwriting in and around the school.
- Lessons follow a sequence which always begin with a hook to build interest. This follows a series of lessons which focus on understanding the structural features of the given genre and the successful application of targeted grammar and punctuation skills.
The teaching of these skills is at the heart of each literacy unit, with short writing opportunities throughout, building up to a final piece of writing inspired by the text/s studied. We follow ‘talk for writing’ as a planning model, which means children plan and rehearse their writing through pictures and images, embedding the structure of sentences before they attempt to write them for themselves.
The final piece of writing is then written using learning from the previous sessions. This is written in draft form and is then edited and improved by the children. Children are taught these skills using age appropriate strategies and they make any improvements with a red pen.
- Teachers provide regular constructive feedback through verbal and written marking, which also promotes reasoning about the work that has been completed. Peer and self-assessment are an important part of our learning and peer discussion and marking is encouraged, with time planned into lessons for children to respond to marking and feedback.
- All children’s needs are catered for during this sequence and children who require additional support are differentiated accordingly using a range of visual and age-appropriate resources. Further teacher-led opportunities are given to these children to inspire and encourage them to bridge their learning gaps.
See documents below which share the teaching sequence, the learning ladder assessment criteria, grammar expectations and text types for each year group.