English has a pre-eminent place in education and in society. A high-quality education in English will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. Through reading in particular, pupils have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Literature, especially, plays a key role in such development. Reading also enables pupils both to acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know. All the skills of language are essential to participating fully as a member of society; pupils, therefore, who do not learn to speak, read and write fluently and confidently are effectively disenfranchised.
At Woodland Primary School, our intent is to enable children to acquire the knowledge, skills and understanding necessary to communicate both verbally and through written means in the most effective way that they can. This will enable the children to access a broad and balanced curriculum.
We recognise prior learning and build on it with memorable learning experiences while targeting support where necessary. The children develop the self-motivation to take part in high level reading and writing activities and help establish the individual child’s enjoyment of reading and writing as well as key life skills.
We aim to help children become creative, critical thinkers who are proud of their locality while looking outwards to the greater world. Our English curriculum embeds a love of learning, and provides all children the opportunities they need to be literate underpinned by strong basic skills.
Through English planning, we intend to develop reading skills, writing skills in a range of genres linking to real–life experiences (including local authors and stories where appropriate) and a strong knowledge of spelling, punctuation and grammar as well as becoming legible and fluent writers.
Our curriculum rewards effort and creativity while promoting enjoyment and individuality. This, in turn, develops our pupils into resilient and reflective young people, ready to face the real world as active, responsible caring members of the school and wider community.
Using age related expectations (A.R.E) and through carefully planned units of work, where learning is sequenced to build knowledge, skills and vocabulary, children can fully develop their literacy skills.
Teachers plan exciting and engaging reading and writing opportunities which excite and motivate all learners. Lessons are planned effectively to take children’s prior learning and current assessment into account and are appropriately differentiated in order that all children make their best progress.
Fundamental skills are revisited regularly across the year groups and build upon prior learning to ensure children gain key skills in reading, writing and grammar and are able to close any identified gaps. The bottom 20% of children in each year group are quickly identified through ongoing assessment and are immediately given extra support in small group interventions to make rapid progress and not slip further behind.
Teachers have secure knowledge and high standards of written and verbal
English and have access to ongoing CPD to maintain a solid understanding of current pedagogical knowledge and use a range of teaching styles to match individual children’s needs. Using a range of resources, including technology and online learning as well as effective assessment and monitoring of progress, teachers extend children’s learning both in individual lessons and over time.
Classes are timetabled to take part in daily English lessons which include discreet and cross-curricular opportunities for reading and extended writing opportunities across the curriculum so that all children have regular literacy input throughout their school lives.
Woodland Primary School has high expectations of presentation and each class follows a tailored handwriting programme. Similarly, each class follows the ‘Read, Write Inc’ spelling programme leading to fluent and confident writers. Independent writing demonstrates children’s ongoing progress, which is monitored through school and cluster moderations helping to secure teacher judgements.
From a range of starting points, children make at least good progress and leave us with a love of literacy, ready to embark on their next stage of learning.
Through our English curriculum, we develop the whole child both academically and socially. Children are helped to become confident, enthusiastic learners who engage in collaborative and independent activities.
Children are assessed against end of unit expectations and samples are moderated internally to ensure continuity of expectation. Key skills are broken into small steps and are monitored by the subject leader termly through work scrutinies and lesson drop-ins as well as regular moderations. SATS analysis and pupil progress as well as internal assessment enable early identification of any children who may not be making the expected level of progress.
By knowing our children well, children of all abilities are helped to achieve to the very best of their potential. Bespoke strategies and interventions (where required) are applied and reviewed regularly in order to help these children bridge the gap. Greater depth children and those who have the potential to be are similarly identified so that work and challenge can be differentiated to enable them to achieve at the highest level. Children develop a responsibility for making their own choices and decisions to stimulate their curiosity and desire to learn new knowledge and skills.
Woodland Learning Foci for English
- To acquire the knowledge, understanding and skills associated with Spoken Language.
- To acquire the knowledge, understanding and skills associated with Reading, including:
• Word reading;
- To acquire the knowledge, understanding and skills associated with Writing, including:
• Handwriting and presentation;
• Vocabulary and grammar;
Please click on the link below to see the curriculum progression document
Text types studied in each year group
Non-narrative: Recounts; Instructional texts; Information texts; Explanatory texts; Non-chronological reports; Informal letters: recounts; Informal letters: postcards.
Narrative: Fairy Tales; Traditional Tales; Fantasy; Stories with a familiar setting; Stories with predictable and patterned language; Different stories by the same author; Tales from other countries and/or cultures.
Poetry: Themed poems, rhythm and rhyme; Rhyme, language patterns and simple structures; Themed poems. Structural and language patterns; Humorous poems.
Non-narrative: Recounts; Instructional texts; Explanatory texts; Non-chronological reports. Diaries; Persuasive texts: letters, speeches/presentations; Journalistic writing: articles/reports, recounts, interviews; Letters: informal (e.g. postcards) and formal (e.g. persuasion).
Narrative: Mystery; Myths and Legends; Traditional Tales; Fables; Stories with different settings; Different stories by the same author; Science Fiction; Stories with a dilemma; Stories that raise an issue; Tales from other countries and/or cultures; Play scripts.
Poetry: Performance poems; Shape poems and calligrams; list poems; alphabet and number poems; question and answer poems; Language play. Imagery; Exploring form (e.g. syllabic forms (haiku,), prayers, songs, rhyming forms (couplets); Classic poetry.
Non-narrative: Recounts; Instructional texts; Explanatory texts; Non-chronological reports; Persuasive texts: letters, leaflets/brochures, speeches/presentations; Formal letters: persuasion; Journalistic writing: articles/reports, recounts, interviews. Autobiographies/Biographies; Diaries; Debate/Discussion/Balanced Argument texts; Informal letters: recounts, invitations, postcards; Formal letters: information, explanation, persuasion, complaint.
Narrative: Classic Narrative; Thriller; Myths & Legends; Traditional Tales from other countries and/or cultures; Fables; Stories with a dilemma; Stories with different openings; Stories with a twist; Stories that disrupt the chronological sequence of a narrative for effect, e.g. use of flashback; Tales from other countries and/or cultures; Play scripts.
Poetry: Classic poetry; Narrative poetry; Imagery; Performance.