If you require any additional information regarding the curriculum other than that stated below, Skills Booklets are available from the school office which show all the objectives that children will be taught in all year groups for each subject. These booklets will be sent out at the start of each academic year.
Additionally, you can find the National Curriculum at https://www.gov.uk/national-curriculum/overview or ask for a copy from the school office.
Children will be given opportunities to:
- Experience a broad range of books, both fiction and non fiction
- Undertake shared reading where the teacher models how texts are structured, grammatical elements and comment on writers’ purpose.
- Undertake Guided Reading sessions
- Read silently
- Read to a larger audience, i.e. the class, group or parents
- Take home books for reading with parents/ independent reading where appropriate and for general interest
- Choose books from the class library themselves
A combination of approaches will be used to develop reading skills:
- Using picture cues
- Developing a sight vocabulary
- Learning letter sounds and phonics
Expression and understanding will be developed as the children progress.
Staff will read to the class where appropriate.
Children are expected to take home and bring to school their reading book every day. They are expected to share books with parents at home. Parents are encouraged to make comments in the child’s reading diary.
Reading Schemes :
Our aim is for all children to become confident, independent readers. We teach children to read from a variety of structured schemes using the colour book banding system. Books are colour banded starting with Pink, followed by Red, Yellow, Blue, Green, Orange, Turquoise, Purple, Gold, White and Lime.
Main Reading schemes used;
Nelson Phonics Bug: Reception/ Year 1 (and for children who need this in Year 2 and 3)
Oxford Reading Tree Songbirds phonics: Reception/ Year 1 (and for individual children who need this in Year 2 and 3)
Rigby Star, Rigby Star Plus, Rigby Star Quest : Reception to Year 2 (and for individual children who need this in Year 3)
For children, in year 1 and 2 needing further support we use Nelson PM Benchmark books
Once our children have developed the ability to read, understand and respond to different types of text they access age appropriate books from class book shelves.
From Year R onwards, the children begin working through the phases of Letters and Sounds, using the exciting and active teaching scheme- Story Time Phonics. This continues progressively throughout Key Stage 1 and for some children in Key Stage 2.
In Key Stage 1, focused phonics teaching takes place every day using ‘Story Time Phonics.’
Children are regularly assessed at the end of each phase of Letters and Sounds.This information is used to inform planning and is passed onto future teachers.
From Y1 onwards, children start to embark on the structured spelling objectives from the National Curriculum. We use Rising Stars and Skills Builder as our scheme to ensure complete coverage. This programme continues throughout the school and sits alongside phonics for children in Early Years and Key Stage 1.
At regular intervals throughout the year, the spelling objectives from the National Curriculum are assessed and this information is used to inform planning and is passed onto future teachers.
Spelling homework is given weekly to children from Y1 onwards and the children are tested weekly. When and if appropriate, some reception children may be given spelling homework in the summer term.
When teaching writing across the school, we expect our children to be confident writers in a range of fiction and non-fiction texts. These include stories (a range of narrative genres), poetry, plays, instructions, non-chronological reports and explanations. As a school, we strongly believe that our children produce high quality writing when they have experienced it. Therefore, we endeavour to create real experiences for our children. These have included day trips (Paxton Pitts and St Neots Music Festival) and in school experiences- archaeologists for an Egyptian tomb and police detectives for a school frog invasion!
In literacy pupil voice (summer 2016), a year 3 child stated, “It is my favourite piece of writing because I experienced it so I knew what I had to write about. It’s easier to write when you know what to write.”
A year 4 child explained when writing a narrative, “I knew the characters and the story so it was easy to write. I loved the amount of detail I was able to put into my story.” A year 6 child believed, “I put a lot of ‘wow’ words, a range of punctuation and emotive language. Word banks and a plan really help me when writing.”
When communicating ideas in writing it is important that children use a handwriting style which is neat and legible. The importance of handwriting should not be under-estimated. It is vital that children can write quickly, comfortably and legibly as it is a skill needed in many curriculum areas. Children’s self-esteem is also heightened when they are able to take pride in their handwriting.
To develop a joined, confident handwriting style that is clear, legible and fluent, which will free the writer to write and not worry about letter formation.
To instil a positive attitude towards handwriting.
To present work in a neat and orderly fashion appropriate to the task.
Handwriting and expected standards of presentation should be taught as a whole class activity. Some additional lessons at the beginning of a term may be necessary but certainly half an hour a week is a minimum guideline. Intensive teaching is recommended at the start of each school year to clarify expectations, with further reinforcement in weekly lessons. The teacher should act as a model when writing on the board or marking work, using a fluent joined style where appropriate. Letter charts showing a range of writing styles or fonts should be displayed in each classroom. Posters around the school environment should also model expectations for handwriting and presentation.
Pupils will be taught an agreed style (Nelson) across the whole school. Teachers should teach this style drawing from the Nelson scheme using Literacy objectives where possible and addressing issues from assessment and observation. Attention to posture and seating arrangements is important. Children who write with their left hand face particular difficulties and teachers need to be aware of this. Left-handed children should either sit next to other left-handers or on the left side of a right-hander to avoid bumping arms or smudging work.
Children who display specific difficulties with handwriting will have these addressed through such interventions as slanted writing boards, rubber pencil grips, using alternative writing media etc. Individual cases may be referred to the SENCo where necessary.
Children will write in pencil until they demonstrate sufficient ability to write fluently and legibly, at which point they can use a handwriting pen as supplied by the school.