Our English Subject Leaders are Miss Hesketh & Miss Sanderson.
Mrs Marquis-Box and Miss Sanderson lead Phonics & Early Reading.
English Curriculum Statement
Please click on the Phonics link above for a fuller intent, implementation & impact statement relating to phonics.
At Grange Primary School, we believe that literacy and communication are key life skills that enable children to access all learning across the curriculum and participate fully as a member of society.
The aim of our English curriculum is to develop each child’s abilities in reading, writing and speaking and listening, so that they leave our school with the skills to communicate their ideas and emotions confidently and give them a deeper understanding of the world they inhabit. We give the highest priority to the acquisition and development of language and vocabulary through carefully structured teaching and support.
Our English curriculum is carefully planned to expose children to a wide range of texts, stories, poems and authors from different cultural and contextual backgrounds, so that children can both see themselves reflected in, and develop an appreciation of the diversity of the world, through their learning.
At Grange Primary School, we have the highest expectations of all children, providing a broad range of learning and experiences to enable every child to fulfil their potential.
We are a ‘Talk for Writing’ school and use the core principles of vocabulary acquisition, high quality text models and a high level of guided teaching to underpin our English teaching. ‘Talk for Writing’ is a structured programme, which follows the model outlined below:
- Baseline assessment and planning using a ‘cold task’
- Imitation – fluency, vocabulary and comprehension
- Innovation – writing closely linked to a model text
- Independent application and invention using a ‘hot task’
We strongly believe that reading underpins all learning across the curriculum, so we place the strongest emphasis on developing children’s reading skills from the start of their time with us at Grange. We use a range of approaches to teach children how to decode, develop fluency and comprehension and foster a love of reading.
We teach phonics systematically and progressively using ‘Letters and Sounds’ in EYFS and Key Stage One and provide additional support as needed within Key Stage Two. As they move through school, children read books from our progressive, colour banded scheme that are closely linked to their developing phonics knowledge. We expect children to practise their reading at home with familiar texts and have a reading reward scheme in place, which encourages children to read regularly at home with their parents and guardians. For families that may find it difficult to read at home for a variety of reasons, we offer ‘Early Bird Readers’, which allows children to read with an adult before the start of the school day. We also use ‘Reading Eggs’ in Key Stage One to provide an alternative way for children to access reading.
Every class has a class novel and daily time that is dedicated to reading this as a whole class with their class teacher. These texts form our Reading Spine and are chosen for a variety of reasons, including to promote love of reading, link to a specific subject area or to consider the diversity of the authors, characters and settings that our children have access to. Every classroom has a Reading Corner, where children have access to a wider range of books, linked to class learning where appropriate, which are updated regularly from our well-stocked School Library. Children choose to read these books in school and at home to supplement their banded reading books.
During the year, we also promote love of reading through whole school events, such as World Book Day and host our own themed ‘Library @ Lunch’ activities targeted at specific groups of children. Our children also enjoy and are inspired by visits from authors, including Abi Elphinstone and Stephen Davies.
In addition to our whole class English teaching, children take part in guided and whole class reading sessions every week. The focus of these sessions is to develop children’s understanding of their reading, which leads into more formal written comprehension and questioning as they progress towards and through Key Stage Two.
We believe that children can only develop into fluent, confident writers when they learn specific skills in isolation before having the opportunity to apply these to a wide range of engaging and meaningful contexts. Using the ‘Talk for Writing’ model, children learn a model text that they are then able to retell, rewrite and create their own writing based upon.
Grammar, including punctuation, is taught as a discrete subject as a starter to our English lessons – the focus is identified from the children’s ‘cold tasks’ and then the taught skills are applied in their innovated and independent writing at the end of each unit. We use the ‘No Nonsense Spelling’ programme for the teaching of spelling from the Spring term of Year 2, although phonics groups remain in place for those children requiring additional support and consolidation.
We place a high focus on the presentation of work and consider it vital that children develop a fluent style of cursive handwriting that allows greater focus to be placed on the content of the writing. Handwriting is taught daily in EYFS and Key Stage One and remains a regular focus throughout Key Stage Two. Letter formation and cursive joins are modelled by the class teacher and practiced by the children in their handwriting books. Children use books with handwriting guidelines for all of their written work until they have developed consistent and fluent independent handwriting. In Year 4 and 5, all children have the opportunity to earn a pen licence for demonstrating consistently good presentation of their work.
Speaking and listening form an integral part of the ‘Talk for Writing’ process and we place great importance on the development of children’s language. Within English lessons, teachers identify new vocabulary and teach children to understand and apply this vocabulary throughout a unit of work. We use Speechlink programme across the school and Nuffield Early Language Intervention in EYFS to assess children’s language and identify support that may be required. We also have a Speech and Language Therapist as part of our wider support team and she is able to offer more specialised support when needed.
Assessment for Learning is embedded in English 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.
Assessment at all levels is embedded within our English provision. Throughout KS2, children are taught to assess their own learning, identifying successes and areas of improvement for themselves.
Children are regularly given feedback from teaching staff to move learning on and accelerate progress. Staff use questioning and marking effectively to identify misconceptions and address these quickly through timely intervention, additional support and adjustments to planning.
Every term, children in Key Stage Two carry out more formal testing using NFER materials, which supports teachers in identifying and addressing gaps in children’s understanding.
Children in school enjoy English and develop into fluent readers and confident writers, which is reflected in children’s work and our results in end of Key Stage Two assessments. We measure the impact of this in a range of ways, including:
- Learning walks
- Lesson observation and feedback
- Book looks
- Pupil voice conversations
- Team planning and teaching
- Staff meeting training and discussion
- Termly summative assessments
- In-house and local cluster moderation
- External testing
Click HERE to access the full National Curriculum programme of study for English at KS1 and KS2.
Click on the tabs below to read more about teaching and learning in English.
We love reading in our school and our children have enjoyed meeting have been lucky enough to meet a number of authors, including Alex Milway and Polly Ho-Yen.
We were also delighted to welcome the inspirational Abi Elphinstone to our school, where she shared her amazing work with our KS2 children ...
Talk for Writing
Following our involvement in the Preston Primary Writing Project, we teach our English using Pie Corbett's 'Talk for Writing' approach across the school.
Imitate, innovate, invent:
Through this approach, children learn to internalise stories and texts, giving them the structure and vocabulary to be able to respond to texts and write their own versions confidently and creatively.