At St Joseph’s we aim for excellence in English achievement throughout the school.
We believe that a high-quality education in English will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others, and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. Through reading in particular, pupils will have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Literature, especially, plays a key role in such development. We also believe that reading enables pupils both to acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know.
We promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping all of our pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written language, and we develop a love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment. By the end of Year 6, we 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
English lessons at St. Joseph’s are organised as follows:
Early Years Foundation Stage
Daily discrete phonics lessons using the Read Write Inc. programme.
Opportunities to develop a love of reading.
Develop word level and comprehension skills.
Opportunities to develop their communication, language and literacy skills on a daily basis in both adult-led and child-initiated activities.
Encouraging opportunities to write and mark make through use of role play areas, outdoor learning and child initiated activities.
Early letter formation is taught through Read Write Inc.
Key Stages 1 and 2
- Daily phonics/early writing lessons continue (using the Read Write Inc. programme) until children achieve the required standard
- After completion of the Read Write Inc. programme, children are taught English lessons within mixed-ability classes; for Years 2 (from January) to 6, these sessions are planned and mapped using Jane Considine’s The Write Stuff and Classroom Secrets SPaG units, to ensure full coverage of the English curriculum (please see Curriculum Overview documents
- Years 1-6 have Reading Together Time texts assigned to them and these have been carefully mapped to ensure full coverage of texts from the 'five plagues of reading' over the school year. Reading Together Time happens in a minimum of two 35 minute sessions per week and these are low-pressure/high motivation sessions to help develop a love of books and readin
- Teachers read aloud to the children, across a range of text types, every single da
- The Reading Plus programme is used to teach reading fluency, stamina, vocabulary, comprehension and motivation in KS2 during three 35 minute sessions a week. The Literacy Gold programme is used in place of Reading Plus for children who have been identified as requiring additional support with their reading
- Writing is taught from Year 2 onwards using The Write Stuff - through modelled, shared and guided work that is focused on rich, precise vocabulary; sentence construction and text structure
- Children are expected to complete extended independent writing within English lessons (at the end of each The Write Stuff unit of work) and across the curriculum
- Spelling is taught from Years R-2 using Read Write Inc.
- In Years 2-6, Emile Spelling is used to deliver weekly spelling sessions based around a specific pattern or rule. Children are given codes to access activities on the Emile app at home that will allow them to learn and practise work throughout the week. 'Spelling Battles' are scheduled at school through the Emile app to assess children's progress with spelling
- In Key Stage 1, the teaching of Grammar and Punctuation is embedded within English lessons; full coverage is ensured through the use of the Read Write Inc. programme
- In Key Stage 2, children receive one discrete Grammar and Punctuation lesson per week, focusing on one element of the National Curriculum requirements for their year group. Further coverage is achieved through the use of The Write Stuff programme (coverage is shown in the English Curriculum Overview documents)
- Literacy skills are taught, practised and developed across the curriculum
- Provision is made for children who require extra support through differentiated class teaching; targeted teaching groups in English lessons and through intervention groups
- Children are taught basic letter formation through the Read Write Inc. programme in Reception and the Autumn/Spring terms of Year 1
- Continuous cursive handwriting is taught from the Summer term of Year 1 onwards. We use the Handwriting Rescue Scheme, initially to teach continuous cursive handwriting (in Years 1 and 2) and subsequently to practise and refresh skills where necessary.
- All children work their way up our Handwriting/Presentation Success Ladder during their time in school. This awards their progress with licenses for using pen and then red pen for underlining. The ladder refers to confident use of continuous cursive handwriting and also to careful use of the DUMTUMS system (Date, Underline, Miss a line, Title, Underline, Miss a line, Start) for presentation in books
Handwriting and Presentation Goals: These are the books of
St. Joseph's children who are members of the Red Pen Club!