We now follow the new national curriculum guidelines.
English consists of four main areas: reading, speaking and listening, writing and spelling.
•Reading starts when the child learns how to make the 44 phonic sounds and begins to sound out and blend sounds together.
•Initially an adult records when the child reads, by Yr 3/4 the child is beginning to record themselves and by Y5/6 is analysing what they read in a fully independent way.
Speaking and listening
Speaking and listening involves rehearsing ideas out loud. This can take many forms such as memorising and performing poetry, role-play, public speaking and explaining a viewpoint supported by evidence.
Writing is used across the curriculum.
•We start with the basics of VCOP:
-making adventurous word choices and vocabulary;
- connectives to join ideas together;
- openers to start sentences in different ways
By focusing on these the child begins to produce clear and interesting sentences.
•The next step is to look at the skeleton layout for different types of writing so we can recognise and reproduce our own i.e. is it a story, a letter, an explanation, a poem etc.
•Then we identify the language features for each type of writing so we can recognise and reproduce our own i.e. an explanation will use connectives, a story will often be written in the past tense, instructions will use bossy verbs at the start of the instruction etc.
•Grammar and spelling are integral to all our writing.
•We try to make all writing ‘real’ so it has a real purpose and we teach how to write using modelling, the THINK SAY WRITE READ CHECK process, guided and supported work and ensuring that the children know how they can be successful using clear ‘Steps to success’.
•We then give children the opportunities to apply what they have learnt in real pieces of writing, through ‘Big writing’ challenges and across all the subject areas.
•We test twice a year to gauge where individual children are and how much progress they are making using the Single Word Spelling Test (SWST).
•We teach rules and patterns of spelling not just individual words:
-KS1 use Letters and Sounds
-KS2 use Support For Spelling
•We have weekly tests at the level of the individual child.
•Spelling is integral to all our work across the curriculum and we use spelling logs, dictionaries and thesaurus’ in class.