At Hatherleigh Community Primary School, we aim to promote high standards of literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the written and spoken word through the provision of engaging and creative opportunities, enabling children to question, imagine and to reflect critically on their ideas and actions.
We aim to ensure that all children:
- 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.
Speaking and listening
The quality and variety of language that children hear and speak are vital for developing their vocabulary, grammar and their understanding for reading and writing. In order to promote high quality speaking and listening, teachers will provide a variety of opportunities for pupils to use talk for learning in all subjects, to discuss what they are learning and to develop their wider skills in spoken language.
These opportunities may include:
- Playing an active role in directing their own learning, e.g. making decisions about how to approach a task, selecting appropriate resources.
- Engaging in speaking and listening in a variety of groupings and settings, e.g. reading out loud as an individual and a larger group during shared reading, working collaboratively on an investigation during group work, reporting findings, interviewing people as part of a research project, acting as a guide for a visitor to the school.
- Using language creatively and imaginatively, e.g. through role-play, drama, hot-seating, storytelling.
- Demonstrating what they know and evaluating their understanding through discussion and use of response partners.
One of the main aims of English in the National Curriculum is to ‘develop [pupils] love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment’. This is to be achieved by ensuring that children ‘develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information’.
We provide the children with opportunities to:
- Read daily using a wide range of text and genres (during independent reading time, whole class sessions and focused guided reading sessions.)
- Participate in daily interactive phonics sessions which start in EYFS and continue through KS1 (and KS2 if necessary).
- Share and talk about stories to improve their comprehension skills and to help them make informed choices with their independent reading.
- Read aloud to encourage expression and increase confidence.
- Value books through reading regularly to children, provision of a fiction and non-fiction library, celebrating World Book Day.
- Ensure reading skills are taught as children progress through the school to enable them to develop a critique of a range of literature and styles of writing.
Writing consists of Transcription (spelling and handwriting) and Composition (articulating ideas and structuring them in speech and writing). Our teaching aims to develop children’s competence in both these two dimensions and children are taught how to plan, revise and evaluate their writing. Writing and reading are closely connected and teachers choose extremely high quality and stimulating texts as a basis for writing. Children become familiar with a range of text types and their features so that they can begin the exploration of language and structure (layout, level of formality, organisational devices, setting, character etc.) By exposing children to a wide bank of texts, we are helping them to generate interesting ideas and to develop and enrich their own writing skills.
We are providing opportunities for children to:
- Write across a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry genres.
- Develop a voice as a writer.
- Discuss, reflect and improve their writing frequently.
- See examples of good writing through shared and modelled writing.
- Write in response to a range of stimuli.
- Present their writing in a variety of ways.
- Develop Grammar, Spelling and Punctuation skills through explicit teaching.
- Regularly practice and improve their Handwriting.
- Use dictionaries and thesauruses to develop a broader vocabulary.