English at Leiston
At Leiston Primary School our overarching aim for English in the national curriculum is to promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop a love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment. Here at Leiston, we aim to teach our children to read fluently and with good understanding and to develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information. We will help children to acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language. We will set high expectations for children to appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage. At Leiston our children will be taught to write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences. They will be encouraged to use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas. We want the children at Leiston Primary School to become literate members of society; passionate readers and confident communicators both in writing and speech, equipping them with the skills needed for later adult life.
The English curriculum is delivered through long and medium term plans created in response to the statutory requirements of the National Curriculum 2014, which ensures coverage of genres and aspects of spelling, punctuation and grammar and is specific to the needs of our children. In Key Stage 1 and 2, English lessons are timetabled daily with the added provision that extended writing sessions may also be scheduled. In addition to English lessons, children have regular opportunities to apply English skills across the curriculum with the same high expectations used within English lessons. Handwriting and spelling is taught throughout the weekly timetable and aims to link with topic learning, where possible, closing gaps and building on contextual vocabulary through vocabulary tiers and working walls. It is expected children maintain their standards of literacy in their writing within wider curriculum subjects. Teachers plan for pupils to include aspects of spelling, punctuation and grammar in their wider curriculum writing outcomes.
At Leiston, we plan activities that will allow children to master different aspects of the English curriculum. We use the Power of Reading scheme to plan genres of written work around engaging texts. Where appropriate, Talk for Writing is incorporated into these plans to enhance children’s confidence and develop their oracy skills when learning to sequence both fiction and non-fiction texts. Daily plans are written by the individual teacher for the individual teacher so they are able to deliver a challenging and knowledgeable lesson that caters for all pupils in the class. Where there are two or more classes in a year, staff coordinate planning so that children are getting the same experiences.
There are discrete phonics lessons in early years and KS1 taught using Read Write Inc. Discrete spelling lessons are taught both in KS1 and KS2. Where there are gaps in phonic knowledge in KS2, interventions are planned and delivered to enable the children to move on in their learning of spelling patterns.
There are daily reading workshops, shared reading sessions and independent reading activities taking part outside of the English lesson, which are often cross-curricular. Guided Reading is planned and taught with a focus on three reading components (the three umbrellas): vocabulary, retrieval and inference. Children learn about language, are able to retrieve information, summarise and sequence, infer meaning, predict and understand authorial intent.
Differentiation and interventions are organised by the class teacher to engage and accelerate reading and writing as needed by the individual pupil. Support staff enable groups and individual children to access the work with a suitable challenge. Our SENCO is consulted for advice on further interventions. Teachers are encouraged to use a range of teaching strategies to meet the needs of their pupils learning styles and needs including:
- Guided and shared reading and writing
- Listening and responding
- Discussion and debate
- Developing oracy skills
- Drama/role play
- Varied use of ICT resources
Working walls are referred to in English lessons to reflect the current learning. These are built on by teachers and pupils to aid children in their group and independent work. Loops of Learning displays are generated and shared with children, so children have examples of finished work. These ensure all children are aware of the purpose of their writing. The use of WAGOLLs act as an exemplar text of the desired outcome of work. Pupils identify the grammatical features of a WAGOLL text and are able to generate their own success criteria for their writing genre outcome at the end of the unit. At Leiston, we encourage our children to be reflective learners. Through a rigorous critique and multiple drafting process, the children then work towards a final draft; reflecting upon their writing via a range of feedback from teachers and pupils to make their improvements. Children are taught to edit spellings of words they know as well as editing for grammar and punctuation. Specific editing pens are given to children to show their reflections, improvements and corrections. This final draft outcome of written work is often linked to the term’s topic final outcome.
English Progression Map for Writing Genres
English Long Term Plans