At Moorhill Primary School we believe that a quality English curriculum should develop children’s love of reading, writing and spoken communication. We have a rigorous and well organised English curriculum that provides many purposeful opportunities for reading, writing and spoken communication. Our curriculum follows the aims of the National Curriculum for English 2014 to enable all children to:
- read easily, fluently and with good understanding,
- develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information,
- acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language,
- appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage,
- write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences,
- are competent in the arts of speaking and listening.
These aims are embedded across our English lessons and the wider curriculum. We will provide the means for children to develop a secure knowledge-base in English, which follows a clear pathway of progression as they advance through the primary curriculum. Rigorous assessment and review will ensure that we are able to provide targeted support so that all children experience success in English; we believe that a secure basis in English is crucial to a high quality education and will give our children the tools they need to participate fully as a member of society.
Early reading and writing is supported through the Read Write Inc scheme. Regular training and development days ensure that staff are equipped to teach with the expertise and skills required to promote excellent progress, as well as a love of reading. Children are matched to a reading book through RWI, phonically appropriate books and Accelerated Reader.
In KS2, or when children have completed the RWI programme, they further develop deeper reading skills in line with the progression map for the school. Each class, has, in its timetable, time for independent reading, guided reading and opportunities to listen to stories. The children also take part in organising and developing their classroom reading area. Involving parents is important so we communicate and raise the profile of reading through a half termly newsletter.
When planning literacy lessons, teachers make links to other areas of the curriculum to ensure that cross curricular links provide further context for learning. Teaching blocks focus on fiction, non-fiction or poetry, using high quality texts, in line with the 2014 National Curriculum and comprehension, grammar and writing are embedded in lessons. Lessons sequences themselves build progressively towards an extended piece of writing. Handwriting and spelling are taught outside the English lesson in short focussed sessions.
Assessment for Learning is embedded in literacy lessons and children are active in reviewing the successes in their work and identifying, with support from their teacher, target areas for development to ensure a continuous and individualised approach to improving their work.
Reading and writing are valued highly by the children and they can talk confidently about their reading and writing. Children are about to talk confidently about their preferences and through the careful choosing of texts build on their cultural capital. Children can write for a range of audiences and purposes using a developing and growing range of vocabulary.
Early Reading & Writing at Moorhill Primary
At Moorhill, we want children to learn to read and write quickly and accurately and to then keep on reading and writing. We use the Read Write Inc programme, as it teaches children to read accurately and fluently with good comprehension. For children at Moorhill, getting reading fluency right is key to success in later years and aids the development of comprehension. They learn to form each letter, spell correctly, and put together their ideas step-by-step, alongside developing their writing for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences.’
Read Write Inc covers the key aims of reading and writing as set out in the National curriculum.
At Moorhill, we have clear expectations of how the children should progress throughout the school year. The tables below show the expected levels for YR-Y2 at the end of each term:
During a RWI lesson children learn a new sound and review previously taught sounds. Children read real and nonsense words to practise their decoding and blending skills. They then apply their phonic knowledge to the spelling of words. The children then read a text matching their assessed level, answer questions, proofread sentences for mistakes, hold sentences and write them independently and complete writing activities.
The children who make the slowest progress in RWI lessons will receive ‘Fast Track Tutoring’ to make progress. This breaks down the phonics and reading strands of Read Write Inc. phonics into smaller steps to accelerate children’s reading progress. It does not include the handwriting, spelling and writing activities found in the full programme, as tutoring time is limited to 20 minutes per child. It provides intensive, targeted support to address specific gaps in a child’s reading. Some children will only need a few weeks’ tutoring. Others may need a term. Those with significant learning difficulties may need much longer.
Children take reading books home that are appropriately matched to their Read Write Inc level. The books that the children read provide the opportunity for them to practise their developing skills and knowledge.
Every class has story-time each day to promote reading for pleasure and enables the children to see their teachers as readers.
At Moorhill our aim is for children to have graduated from the RWInc programme by the end of summer half term in Year 2. This means that Read Write Inc will no longer be needed. However identified Year 2 and KS2 children who still require further support with phonics, will continue to access Read Write Inc.
The Read Write Inc programme will supplement the pupil outcomes in Year 1 when they take the Year 1 Phonics Screening Check. At Moorhill we aim to be at least matching the national outcomes whereby 82% of children are expected to pass the test and surpass them.
As the children are seeing their teachers as readers, we hope that the children learn to love reading and enjoy listening to and joining in with many different types of text. They will be able to confidently read texts that are in line with their phonics knowledge.
As they continue their reading journey the children at Moorhill will broaden their understanding and vocabulary, enabling them to become lifelong readers.
Read Write Inc. (RWI)
At Moorhill Primary our children learn to read using the ‘Read Write Inc.’ phonics programme. On entry into Reception class, pupils begin to learn the letter sounds (not names). This teaching continues throughout the school with all staff using the same language for the teaching of reading.
Sounds are either 'bouncy' or 'stretchy' and children are taught to say the sounds correctly. This helps them to be able to blend words for reading.
Once we know the sounds the letters make, we can begin to blend them together for reading. This is known as sound blending and we call this 'Fred Talk'.
Now we can use the sounds we know to spell the words in our writing. We use 'Fred Fingers' for spelling. We also use rhymes to help us form our letters correctly.
Use pure sounds not alphabet names
a, buh, cuh
Practising Fred Talk
(l-oo-k, m-a-t, th-i-ng)
Listen to your child read
Talk about books, stories, characters, illustrations
Make reading fun!
Let your child see you read and read to them often
Read a range of texts such as comics, leaflets, newspapers, recipes, poems
Use hugs and praise to show how proud you are of them
At Moorhill Primary School, we believe that every learner should leave our school with the necessary skills to read accurately, fluently and with understanding in order to achieve success throughout their adult life. They see reading as key to their success and engage with it enthusiastically, reading for pleasure and information. They use the new vocabulary acquired through reading in context to support their communication with the wider world. They demonstrate a deep understanding of what they have read and are able to articulate why authors have crafted texts in a particular way, understanding how this affects them as a reader, enabling them to read critically in a world of increasing information.
Guided reading structure for Year 3 to Year 6
As a result of teaching reading in this way, it is expected that learners will:
- Make excellent progress from their starting points.
- Develop the full range of reading skills and apply these in different contexts.
- Utilise reading skills independently, knowing when and why to use each.
- Be fluent in their reading and read with understanding.
- Respond to questions with high-levels of articulation.
- Deepen their reading skills regularly.
- Access reading tests with the confidence to succeed.
At Moorhill Primary School, we aim to ensure all of our children develop a genuine love of language and the written word, through a text-based approach. Careful links are made across the curriculum to ensure that children’s English learning is relevant and meaningful: where possible linking our reading, writing and the topic that we are covering in History, Geography and Science. We ensure that children develop an understanding of how widely writing is used in everyday life and, therefore, how important and useful the skills are that they are learning.
Our intentions in writing are for children to:
- Write for a purpose
- See themselves as real writers
- Take ownership of their writing
- See writing as an interesting and enjoyable process
- Acquire the ability to organise and plan their written work Implementation
Our whole curriculum is shaped by our school vision which aims to enable all children, regardless of background, ability, additional needs, to flourish to become the very best version of themselves they can possibly be. We teach the National Curriculum, supported by a clear skills and knowledge progression. This ensures that skills and knowledge are built on year by year and sequenced appropriately to maximise learning for all children. We aim to develop children’s ability to produce well-structured, detailed writing in which the meaning is made clear, and which engages the interest of the audience/reader. Particular attention is paid throughout the school to the formal structures of English: grammatical detail, punctuation and spelling.
Teachers clearly model writing skills and document the learning journey through consistent working walls; guided writing sessions are used to target specific needs of both groups and individuals. Children have opportunities to write at length, in extended, independent writing sessions at the end of a unit of work – applying their taught skills to an unsupported piece of writing.
Throughout the Early Years, Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2, we teach writing through a text-based approach (including RWI), which allows us to meet the needs of the children that we are teaching – through choosing a text that will engage, inspire and motivate. As well as reading a wide variety of genres, children are given frequent opportunities to develop their skills in writing in different genres. Each term, children will publish a piece of writing and will be displayed on clipboards in the corridors throughout the school; this is known as “Clip it, clap it”. This allows every child to have a written piece of work on the walls, which can be seen and celebrated by all, as well as knowing they are writing for a purpose and being seen as real writers.
Pupils are taught discrete punctuation and grammar skills, appropriate to their year group, within our text based approach to planning, allowing opportunities to identify, practice and consolidate grammatical understanding, whilst also being immersed in a text. Children then apply the grammar and punctuation skills that they have learnt in their extended pieces of writing.
At Moorhill Primary School, spelling is taught regularly in focused sessions within each class using either RWI or No-Nonsense spelling scheme. Class teachers use No Nonsense Spelling to support with the teaching of the different spelling rules and this can often be used as homework for children when applicable.
By the time children leave our school they will:
- Make good progress from their KS1 results
- Have a love for writing and write for enjoyment
- Be able to produce written work in all areas of the curriculum to a high standard
- Be confident to write for a range of different purposes