The ability to use language and explore literature is key to the way in which children learn across all subjects, think creatively and make their own mark on the world around them. Our aim at St Mary and All Saints is to provide children with purposeful opportunities within which to read, write and speak – using a range of real-world tools.
At St Mary and All Saints each class has a literacy hour in the morning. A further two and a half hours across the week is dedicated to the development of reading and speaking and listening skills. Additional literacy development takes place through the wider curriculum, with emphasis on the development of writing in a range of genre for different purposes.
English Coverage Grids Academic Year 2015/2016
At St Marys we believe that writing is closely linked to reading; pupils draw upon their range of reading experiences and use them as models for writing. Therefore children are given opportunities to experience a range of texts in their literacy lessons.
Children are encouraged to use ‘talk 4 writing’ a concept developed by Pie Corbett. It enables children to imitate the language they need for a particular topic orally before reading and analysing it and then writing their own version. The teacher also plays a crucial role in the development of writing through modelling the writing process and teaching at the point of writing.
The process of planning, interaction, collaboration, mutual support and feedback helps a writer to move forward through the process of writing therefore children are given verbal and written feedback and provided with time to improve their writing.
Reading in Early Years and KS1
At St Mary and All Saints we aim to instil a passion for books and foster a real love of reading. We do this by ensuring the books we provide for children in Early Years and KS1 are colourful, interesting and engaging for boys and girls.
Each child in Early Years and KS1 takes home individual reading books. These are banded in colours and the children are given an appropriate level book depending on their age, decoding skills and understanding of comprehension. Children take home books every night to read with parents and carers to try and develop their phonic skills and understanding of different texts. The children move through the coloured books at a steady pace, often re-reading books to ensure they have secured the vocabulary until they become a more fluent and confident reader.
Children in Early Years and KS1 also take part in a guided reading session once a week, where they have the opportunity to share a book in a small group giving time for the children to read and discuss the book together with their class teacher. The children also have opportunities to read a text that is often a little more challenging than one they would read alone or at home as the adult supporter can scaffold their learning and help them to develop reading skills of a higher standard.
During guided reading sessions each week the children have the opportunity to use Oxford Owls . This is a fantastic resource for supporting children’s reading and a way of allowing the children to experiences different books and to gain a wider vocabulary and understanding of texts.
Neat, fluent handwriting allows any individual to work more quickly and productively. In order to achieve this, children are taught pre-cursive followed by cursive writing.
- All pupils use quality pencils which are soft-leaded to aid fine motor skills.
- All pencils are sharpened regularly.
- Children are expected to write in blue ink, use Berol, roller ball, fountain/cartridge, gel pens. Children should not use biros.
- By the end of the summer term of year 3, children make the transition from pencil to pen.
- Children are encouraged to sit appropriately when writing.
Grammar skills and knowledge are taught through Literacy lessons. Different concepts are introduced in different year groups. At St Mary and All Saints we follow the Pie Corbett Grammar Progression which can be found here.
Listening and Speaking
These skills are vital in all learning and social situations. We encourage the children to listen carefully to others and to speak clearly and confidently in discussions. Children explore, develop and sustain ideas through talk. Children are offered many opportunities for taking part in a variety of presentations and productions within school, at the local church and in the wider community to build their confidence, enjoyment and mastery of language.
Children are taught drama and speaking and listening techniques including working in role to explore ideas and texts. They are provided with opportunities to develop their creative abilities both in the classroom, through presentations in assemblies, performances and in our TV studio.
Phonics Resource Pack download
Click here to view Phonics Training Presentation (Powerpoint).