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What are the aims of teaching English?

The National Curriculum for English aims to ensure that all pupils:

 

  • 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
  • use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas
  • are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate

 

How is the National Curriculum covered in English?

English has a key place in the education of pupils here at Bramley St Peter’s.

With the introduction of the New English National Curriculum we have been able to evaluate our provision and this has allowed us to be more challenging and creative. 

Each class teacher timetables a daily English lesson.  Reading comprehension lessons are taught weekly during which comprehension skills develop through pupils’ experience of high-quality discussions with the teacher and reading and discussing a range of stories, poems and non-fiction texts. 

 

Aspects of grammar are covered weekly, either as a grammar lesson or daily 10 minute sessions using grammar in context  – which may include punctuation and/or spelling but these may need a separate focus time. 

 

Children receive two handwriting lessons a week, with additional shorter sessions if required.  The rest of the week teachers plan English lessons covering the genre for that week with children’s knowledge and skills being developed to write in that particular style. 

 

The teaching of phonics (Letters and Sounds) is an important part of our literacy learning.  This is covered extensively in Foundation Stage Two (Reception classes) and Key Stage One by daily phonic lessons.  In Reception we use Jolly Phonics, a fun and child-centred approach to synthetic phonics: the children enjoy learning actions and songs for all the  letter sounds.

At the end of Year 1, all children sit a statutory test in phonics.

 

At Bramley St Peter’s we know reading is such an important part of the curriculum and we therefore also aim to develop a love for reading.  Teachers read regularly to the class; a carefully chosen novel or shorter book for younger children.  This provides further opportunities for children to talk about what they remember from last time, be involved in lots of questioning and discussion and very importantly be stimulated to read more themselves!  It may be that spelling, punctuation and grammar teaching may be planned around the class book.

 

What skills are covered during lessons?

Teachers should develop pupils’ spoken language, reading skills, writing skills and vocabulary knowledge as integral aspects of the teaching of every subject.  English is both a subject in its own right and the medium for teaching; for pupils, understanding the language provides access to the whole curriculum. Fluency in the English language is an essential foundation for success in all subjects.

 

How is progression achieved?

Teachers plan using the overview to ensure there is consistent planning of progression initially via the genre and then by using the English National Curriculum section appropriate for their year group/s.

Each year group builds on previous taught skills and experience.  Time is given to consolidate learning by giving children the opportunity to reflect/improve marked work.

 

 

Intervention and enhancement programmes include:

  • FFT
  • Booster Groups – Y5/Y6 reading and writing
  • Lexia – Phonic programme for identified children
  • Phonic groups FS2, Y1 and Y2

 

 

In order to achieve these aims, we greatly welcome home support in developing children’s reading and language by sharing stories and discussing topics covered in school.  Children regularly change their reading books in school and homework is set weekly.

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