ENGLISH LEADERSHIP TEAM
Mrs Duerden: English Lead *** Mrs Miller: Phonics/Early Reading/Reading Intervention Lead
'ALWAYS START WITH WHY'
ENGLISH INTENT FOR OUR PROGRAMME OF STUDY: KNOWLEDGE, PROGRESSION, COVERAGE
(PRIOR, NOW, NEXT)
Our core school intent runs through every aspect of our teaching and learning. It is our philosophy and approach in every subject area. It is how we teach and learn. Every leader commits to this. But every subject must have its own Programme of Study - its own lines of progression for the knowledge and skills we plan to teach and therefore its own rationale/intent for what we teach and learn. This is the English rationale for this ‘prior, now and next’ .
Using the National Curriculum, we have designed a study programme which build progressively and logically over seven years.
It is our overriding intention to consider the development of writing as the degree to which young writer's can use their knowledge of a wide range of grammatical and punctuation skills and techniques to ensure that any piece of writing meets its core purpose and hits its desired audience. This is the spine that runs through our philosophy and we have designed our curriculum to enable this to happen using at all times the full and complete requirements of the National Curriculum as our statutory guidance.
The deployment of 'Writer's Craft' skills to achieve a particular effect in writing is separated into five key areas across school. These areas are: Sentence & Vocabulary; Punctuation; Cohesion; Writing Process; Purpose & Audience. The gathering of new vocabulary is an endless, essential stream whilst the introduction of new sentence structures, language devices, punctuation and, crucially, devices for cohesion (or 'sticking bits together' as we jokingly refer to it) form carefully measured, progressive areas of knowledge that we have designed to be revisited and enhanced over and over again in a stream of differing purposes and contexts. Confident application of these 'Writer's Craft' aspects is imperative. They are the toolkit for success. The Writing Process aspect guides us consistently through the process of writing within learning units. We offer frames and structures at the right time to support our emergent writers but then encourage the children to develop these and move away from these as their confidence, knowledge level and independence grows.
Transcription runs throughout our Writing Programme of Study as the spelling and handwriting aspects form constant threads for our teaching and learning. There is particular emphasis upon the spelling - which although summarised in our Progression & Milestones documents binds strongly across both the reading and writing aspects in line with our prominent and constant phonics input to all those who require it.
A key commitment throughout our approach is the ever present role of children's speaking and listening. These are very prominent features of the earlier stages in each of our taught units. Gathering ideas involves immersing in, gathering and storing new words, story structures and styles of writing. Before we can commit work to paper, we must first be able to rehearse and re-tell what we want to say verbally. This principle remains throughout the course of our studies.
Word Reading and Comprehension form the two aspects of our Reading Programme of Study. Clearly there is a deliberate focus upon the intensive Word Reading aspect in the initial stages of the children's Mayfield journey. The starting point for our children mean this is more essential than ever and the provision for Word Reading support remains throughout the seven year journey with continued monitoring and intervention led by trained staff. Early Reading is the key aspect in our planning and preparation for our English curriculum - our children need this! Our approach to Comprehension builds alongside the development of the Reading Domains - with a daily, short, sharp focus upon comprehension being devised to capture and maintain attention at the outset of each learning day as the children apply their Word Reading skills.
Running together, these various strands deliver exactly what we set out to do and work fully alongside our whole school 'How' intent. It is a system which builds knowledge and skills in a way that is right for our children from their starting points.
Take a look at the English Unit Coverage Overview below and our Reading & Writing Programmes of Study: Progression & Milestones documents. Download them at the base of the page and then take a look at the 'Implement & Impact' section of the website to see how we bring this to life with the help of our ‘how’ Classroom Craft philosophy.
ENGLISH IMPLEMENTATION & MONITORING: SO OUR CURRENT WORK IS...
* Enhancing our reading into writing process.
As a school we have studied carefully the key factors to increasing our children's progress in writing. So we have designed units of work which focus more directly upon how we use our ideas from reading in our own writing - essentially the transferance of vocabulary and sentence structures into independent work. We studied carefully how we could best unlock this and make a more fluid unit of work and then consider the way in which we teach and apply this. Our new 'enquiry based' approach in KS1 is enabling the team to give more precise input to smaller numbers who can independently apply this within our pre-prepared areas of provision. We are encouraged by our recent 'Good' Ofsted Report and are empowered to continue with this direction. It is interesting to see how our professional development work with our teaching assistant team is enabling this approach to be maximised and we also apply our live marking philosophy which is creating that immediate reflection and checking in our young writers. It is great to see our children wanting to review their work, find improvements and use their speech to drive this.
* Raising the profile and consistency of reading through school.
Our 'Pupil Voice' discussions tell us that our children love reading - our vision states we must value and enable any achievement, so we have targeted the range, appropriate challenge, love and position of reading as a key to sustaining and accelerating progress across school. Since the arrival of the new headteacher, we have left no stone unturned as we search for the right formula for our children. Our children have received 'Never Ending Stories', 'Teacher Recommends: A Top 20 of Books', 'Our 40 Book Challenge' 'Talk for Reading Gang - Now in its second guise.', 1-2-1 reading for all children across an eight day cycle, new book banding, the creation of our first indoor 'Secret Garden Library', Classic Story Time and crucially making our room a spider's web which captures the precise vocabulary which will help our young writers. Our book banding of texts in school has been a vital process, so that again they can assist with the engagement, interest and appropriate challenge for children as they begin to turn their imagination in words and research their interests and topics with appropriate non-fiction - this is currently a major focus for our Curriculum Craft Leader (Mr Taylor) who is developing the use of our Islands and Stations as hubs for our non-fiction texts.
These are two of the major areas of work we are currently undertaking. Constant monitoring of early reading and phonic intervention provision, training for teaching assistants in phonics, leading our book week themed activities and launching our new Reading Domain 'Talk for Reading Gang' is also keeping us busy as is the establishment learning mats for our new units of work. Lots and lots of busy implementation and monitoring.
* We follow Pearson's Reading Scheme throughout school - all relevant levels of book are fully decodable. We follow Letters and Sounds as our phonics scheme. This is supplemented by Jolly Phonics in our Early Years class.