The English Curriculum

Writing

All children should have an opportunity to write independently each day.  The format of all sessions will follow the workshop style approach and all teachers will use the whole school writing genre guidance policy to support the planning and delivery of writing sessions.  The approach to writing will be personalised to pupils needs, with all writing genres having a similar approach across all years.  In each writing session children will have the opportunity to develop sentence structure and features, plan and write either a whole text or a significant part of text.  Across a unit of work there will be opportunities for modelled writing, reading example texts, shared writing and deconstruction of texts onto a planning grid.  Forms of writing are taught in blocked units to allow children to make progress each day in their learning.  There are repeated opportunities to identify and use the relevant features of the genre stuudied.  Immediate marking ensures that the learners are clear on where and why they succeed and what can be done next time to improve their writing further.

A framework for writing is planned across a year with a half term focusing solely on either narrative  or     non-narrative writing.  For example the first half term may cover poetry, setting, character and a story type, whilst the second half term may focus on a range of persuasive style texts (argument, discursive, advert, leaflet, letters of complaint, invitations.)

Context labels are produced for each writing session and accompany the pupil's work.  These are differentiated to meet pupil need.  All contexts include the date and the lesson objectives, with a brief outline of input given from the teacher to support the learning.  Clear and specific success criteria is included on the context label.  These may be criteria linked to the genre, the class target, or an individual pupil target. Colour coding may be used to indicate opportunities for self or peer assessment against the success criteria included.

The marking code is applied throughout the teacher's floor walking during the independent writing time.  Pupils will respond to these immediately.  Time is also given following the end of session marking for pupils to edit their writing.

Assessments for writing are carried out each half term and moderated by all staff.

Reading        

The development of reading at Kingsley St John's is an ongoing process and we believe in a close working relationship between teacher and parent/carer.  Home/school reading diaries are maintained and next steps are clearly identified by the teachers  as well as areas of strength.  Individual reading is heard regularly each week and the children have independence in selecting their next text.  Reading skills are also developed through the workshop style writing approach, through reading modelled texts and text marking.

Guided reading sessions may begin with a short reading type activity and there may be modelled reading, with modelled higher level skills being shown.  Guided reading sessions are well planned and often will use texts at a slightly higher level than a child's independent reading level.  As a learner's reading develops, there should be a focus on the range assessment focus areas when planning for and assessing reading outcomes.  Benchmarking is used to track pupil's reading skills and historical optional sats are used to assess reading skills indpendently are also used.

Reading ages are tracked throughout the academic year so that any dips/stuttered progress is identified quickly and short booster can be put in place to ensure children progress is evident.

Speaking and Listening

Speakig and listening activities should be planned regulraly into lessons across the curriculum.  Drama should not be underestimated in its ability to strengthen character, emotional well-being, self-esteem, social interaction and confidence building.  It is a key skill and at Kingsley St John's, as a small school, these opportunities must be fostered and nurtured regularly.  This is a key strength of the school, and ensure key skills are learned to support the next stage of education and later life skills.

Phonics

Phonics is taught daily, and then spelling, punctuation and grammar continue through key stage 2.  Groups are small, ensuring a personalised approach.  Although phonics is taught each day discretely, we also ensure that these skills are being applied in reading, writing and spelling sessions.  Progress in phonics is carried out half termly and tracked.  The school uses Phonics Bug to support the learning and teaching opportunities of phonics.  At key stage 1 there are opportunities for reading texts at home linked to Phonics Bug.

Handwriting

Handwriting is taught alongside spelling patterns to support learning of letter patterns, sounds and strokes.  There are high expectations for handwriting in all subject areas and presentation skills are practised regularly also.  The school teaches cursive script writing.

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