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‘Enjoy learning together; building foundations for life.’

English

The teaching of English is essentially about improving the communication skills of our pupils. This is a fundamental life skill that underpins learning in all other curriculum areas.

Our English curriculum is made up of 3 elements:

  • Speaking and listening
  • Early reading and phonics
  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Speaking and listening

    To be understood and to understand is a key skill which underpins all aspects of learning. Speaking and listening is therefore an essential part of every lesson. 

    In the Foundation stage, Phase 1 phonics focuses on speaking and listening skills. These include sound discrimination, rhythm and rhyme and alliteration. Our children have the opportunity to continue to develop their confidence and vocabulary through this aspect of our curriculum. As they go through the school, talking is sustained and based on real and relevant topics where reading is also used as a prompt. The development of vocabulary is enhanced by activities in the classroom and the reading of high quality age appropriate texts. Children have opportunity to share their ideas, express their opinions and views as well as listen to each other. 

    Speech and language strategies are used to support children with additional needs.  

  • Phonics and early reading

    Early Reading and Phonics 

    At Pannal we promote a love of reading and a curiosity for language by equipping our pupils with the skills to develop confident and fluent reading.  

    We enjoy a variety of reading to help our children develop fluency and understanding: 

    - independent reading 

    - 1-1 reading to an adult (once a week) in KS1 

    - story/book sharing daily at snack time in KS1 

    - home time story in EYFS 

    - Year 2 upwards whole class guided reading  

    - reading buddies with older children 

    We follow a systematic and effective approach to the teaching of phonics as set out in Letters and Sounds. Children implement their learning through reading phonically decodable books resulting in all children learning to read, providing foundations for future learning. 

    Phonics is taught daily in discrete lessons throughout EYFS and KS1 where existing knowledge is revisited and built upon. Phonics underpins our teaching and is an integral part of our curriculum at Pannal. 

    Phonics is taught in a mixture of whole class and group teaching across EYFS and KS1 where children are taught age related expectations and where differing needs of children and cohorts are met. As ‘Pannal Shaped’ colleagues, we appreciate the need to adapt our teaching to best suit the needs of our year groups’ priorities and differing cohorts we may encounter each academic year. 

    At the end of Year 1, children take a National phonics screening assessment.  

    Children’s phonic knowledge is built upon in Key stage 2. Children are taught words in sound families and phonic terminology is referred to in order to aid spelling. 

  • Reading

    We aim for our children to become fluent readers who are able to access information across a wide range of curriculum areas and who have a love for reading and books.   

    Teachers and parents work in partnership to teach and help the child to practice reading. We encourage parents of older children to continue sharing books together; reading to children of all ages has huge benefits. Younger members of our school read with older children bringing our school community together. 

    Rhymes and Phonically decodable reading books are used in the first. Children progress through the coloured book bands in order to read a wide range of books and secure fluency and comprehension before moving onto the next level. 

    Children are taught through a variety of strategies including small group and whole-class activities where the focus is on comprehension skills. Children use increasing difficult texts as they progress through the school to improve these skills.  

    We formally record a child’s reading fluency three times a year and other reading skills. Children are monitored as they progress through the book bands. For children who need extra support with their reading, they are listened and supported with their reading more regularly by an adult. In addition, we have a range of reading books to support our readers to aid confidence. These include an intervention scheme of phonically decodable reading books used throughout KS1 and 2 and high-interest low ability texts for KS2 readers.  

    We take part in World Book Day and our older pupils take part in a Shakespeare workshop. 

    If you need ideas for books for your children to read. There are two links below to help.

    A list of recommended books by age

    Booktrust - lists by theme

    3
  • Writing

    We aim to offer a high quality education in English that will teach our children how to communicate effectively through writing and speaking.  

    Our writing curriculum is organised around audience and purpose. Children are taught to write in a range of styles, including stories, poems, information, letters, newspaper reports and instructions. Much of the writing is linked to something the children have experienced or books they have read. Sometimes the writing is linked to other curriculum areas, such as history or science. We endeavour to provide meaningful writing opportunities for the children. 

    Short focused activities support skills such as grammar, vocabulary, spelling and punctuation.  National curriculum expectations for each year group are planned for and covered through a range of writing 

    The national curriculum is the foundation of our curriculum. Children are taught the processes of writing from the beginning. The transcription skills (spelling and handwriting) for writing are taught both discretely and within the writing sessions. Children plan their writing orally and more formally. The drafting process is embedded in the writing stage after which children have the opportunity to evaluate and edit their work. Children have frequent opportunities to read their work aloud. The writing of all our pupils is valued and feedback is given by teachers and other children to help improve a piece of work. 

    Grammar and punctuation are taught explicitly in discrete teaching sessions as well as linked to a text. In each year group new Grammar terminology is taught and previous terms are reviewed. 

    Phonics and spelling are daily session in KS1 moving to three times a week in KS2. Letters and sounds is followed in EYFS and KS1. Spellings are organised into sound families (where possible) throughout the school.  

    Children’s writing, grammar knowledge and spelling ability are assessed against age related expectations. We formally record a child’s writing progress three times a year. However there is constant review and intervention both informally through dialogue and with research based interventions where appropriate.  

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Grammar Definitions we use in school

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