English Policy

 

– Our Vision –
Through a positive caring environment, we provide the opportunity for every child to reach their full potential. We embrace Christian values and ensure all children are ready for their next steps.

AIMS
We aim to develop pupils’ abilities within an integrated program of Speaking & Listening, Reading & Writing. Pupils will be given opportunities to develop their use, knowledge and understanding of spoken and written English within a broad and balanced curriculum, with opportunities to consolidate and reinforce taught literacy skills.

We aim for pupils at Hartpury Primary School to leave Year 6:

• reading and writing with confidence, fluency and understanding, using a range of independent strategies to self-monitor and correct;
• with a love of reading and a desire to read for enjoyment;
• with an interest in words and their meanings; developing a growing vocabulary in spoken and written forms;
• understanding a range of text types, media types and genres;
• able to write in a variety of styles and forms appropriate to the situation;
• using their developing imagination, inventiveness and critical awareness;
• having a suitable technical vocabulary to articulate their responses.
STATUTORY REQUIREMENTS
Statutory requirements for the teaching and learning of English are laid out in the National Curriculum English Document (2014) and in the Communication and Language and Literacy sections of the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (2012).

In the Foundation Stage (Reception) children are given opportunities to:
• speak and listen and represent ideas in their activities;
• use communication, language and literacy in every part of the curriculum;
• become immersed in an environment rich in print and opportunities to communicate.

At Key Stage One (Years 1 and 2) children learn to speak confidently and listen to what others have to say. They learn to read and write independently and with enthusiasm. They learn to use language to explore their own experiences and imaginary worlds. Children are given opportunities to speak and listen throughout all subject areas.

At Key Stage Two (Years 3-6) children learn to change the way they speak and write to suit different situations, purposes and audiences. They read a range of texts and respond to different layers of meaning in them. They explore the use of language in literary and non-literary texts and learn how the structure of language works.

SUBJECT ORGANISATION
Foundation Stage
In Foundation stage children have four daily discreet phonics lessons. Children have opportunities to develop their communication, language and literacy skills on a daily basis in both adult led and child initiated activities.

Key Stage 1
In Key Stage 1 four daily discreet phonics lessons (Letters and Sounds) which continue and are taught in ability groups, while children have daily mixed ability English lessons with an emphasis on real texts. Children take part in both guided and individual reading sessions and have regular story times to develop a love of reading. Literacy skills are developed across the curriculum.

Provision is made for children who require extra support through intervention programmes (e.g Dancing Bears) and differentiated class teaching.

Key Stage 2
In Key Stage 2 Children have daily English Lessons including regular grammar, punctuation and spelling foci. Additional literacy sessions include guided reading, handwriting, class novel which is read at the Teacher’s discretion at a time throughout the day and spelling. Literacy skills are developed across the curriculum. Provision is made for children who require extra support through intervention programmes (e.g. Rapid Reading) and differentiated class teaching.

APPROACHES TO SPEAKING AND LISTENING
The Four Strands of Speaking and Listening: Speaking; Listening; Group Discussion and Interaction, and Drama permeate the whole curriculum. Interactive teaching strategies are used to engage all pupils in order to raise reading and writing standards. Children are encouraged to develop effective communication skills in readiness for later life.

Opportunities to develop these skills include: class assemblies, talk partners, drama and performances.

We recognise the need for all pupils to speak, read and write Standard English fluently and accurately, while acknowledging that a pupil’s own dialect, or other language is of prime importance. It is our school policy to model good language to the children to encourage Standard English both in speaking and writing.

APPROACHES TO READING
Teachers model reading strategies during shared reading sessions, whilst children have the opportunity to develop reading strategies and to discuss texts in detail during guided reading sessions. Independent reading provides time for both assessment and 1-1 teaching. Four daily discreet phonics lessons in FS and KS1 enable children to decode efficiently. This is continued into KS2 where necessary and is supported by the Dancing Bears and Apples & Pears intervention programs.

A range of reading schemes are used to support early readers as well as book banded books used for guided reading. Teaching assistants support reading activities to ensure that children have more frequent opportunities to read with adults. We also have a variety of volunteers who visit the school to provide additional opportunities to read for those that need it.

Children in the Foundation Stage classes take home a book from school which parents are encouraged to read with their child and then record how they have got on. This encourages teacher – parent communication.

In KS1 children take home a levelled book according to their ability. Each child has a home school reading record that teachers and parents can use to share information about a child’s reading. Parents are encouraged to read with their child daily. Parents are encouraged to support their child’s reading through discussions with the class Teachers.

In Key Stage 2 children choose books to take home and read. Those children who still require a more structured approach to reading have access to the ‘Oxford Reading Tree’ series of books to help these children to continue to grow in confidence as readers with a text that appears appropriate for their age group. The Project X Scheme enables children to access books of an appropriate content but are written at the level appropriate to their reading age.

Teachers assess reading utilising the APP document to record progress. Half termly tests are used to help aid the completion of these documents and inform teachers of next steps. In KS2 all children have an individualised reading target.
Throughout the Key Stage children become more independent in recording what they have read in their reading journals.

We recognise the value of adults (both in school and at home) reading aloud to children, in order to improve their grasp of story language, enthuse them with a love of books and inspire them as writers.
APPROACHES TO WRITING
We aim to develop the children’s ability to produce well structured, detailed writing in which the meaning is made clear and which engages the interest of the reader. Attention is paid throughout the school to the formal structures of English, grammatical detail, punctuation and spelling. To support our teaching of writing we use APP criteria and moderate this with the Ros Wilson criteria. Teachers model writing strategies and the use of phonics and spelling strategies in shared writing sessions.
Guided writing sessions are used to target specific needs of both groups and individuals, whilst children have opportunities to write at length in extended independent writing sessions at the end of each unit.
Furthermore, the school promotes the ‘Big Write’ assessment procedures that inspire children to write at length.
The children are given frequent opportunities in school to write in different contexts using quality texts as a model and for a variety of purposes and audiences. There are many opportunities for children to improve their writing inspired by drama techniques and film clips. They may be asked to produce their writing on their own or as part of group. Children will also be given the opportunity to use ICT for their writing. We utilise a cursive handwriting scheme in school to help children develop fluent, clear and legible joined up writing. Children work hard to achieve a pen licence in Year 3 and 4, this encourages them to take care in their presentation and pride in their work.

CROSS-CURRICULAR LITERACY OPPORTUNITIES
Teachers will seek to take advantage of opportunities to make cross-curricular links. They will plan for pupils to practise and apply the skills, knowledge and understanding acquired through literacy lessons to other areas of the curriculum, with a particular focus in our school of writing through all subject areas where the same standard of writing is expected as seen in Literacy books.

THE USE OF ICT
We recognise the important role ICT has to play in our school in the development of Literacy skills. ICT is used on a daily basis to enhance the teaching of literacy and to give all children the opportunity to experience, read and write multimodal texts and develop visual literacy. The use of ICT is cross – curricular.

ASSESSMENT AND TARGET SETTING
Work will be assessed in line with the Assessment Policy.
Feedback marking is utilised to identify next steps. Peer marking is also used further up the school to develop children’s evaluative skills.

INCLUSION
We aim to provide for all children so that they achieve as highly as they can in English according to their individual abilities. We will identify which pupils or groups of pupils are under-achieving and take steps to improve their attainment. Gifted children will be identified and suitable learning challenges provided.
EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES
Hartpury has universal ambitions for every child, whatever their background or circumstances. Children learn and thrive when they are healthy, safe and engaged.

Our curriculum includes a wide range of texts and other resources which represent the diversity and backgrounds of all our children.

ROLE OF SUBJECT LEADER
The Subject Leader is responsible for improving the standards of teaching and learning in Literacy through:
• monitoring and evaluating Literacy:-
– pupil progress
– provision of Literacy
– the quality of the Learning Environment,
• taking the lead in policy development,
• auditing and supporting colleagues in their CPD,
• purchasing and organising resources,
• keeping up to date with recent Literacy developments.

PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT
We aim to involve parents directly in the life of the school, and thus in the development of children’s skills, knowledge and understanding in English. Parents are involved in hearing children read, and are encouraged to discuss books with them.

There are opportunities each term when parents can discuss their children’s progress with their teacher. Termly curriculum letters provide information about the English curriculum and how parents can support their children. They also emphasise the importance of reading. Parents are encouraged to read both with and to their children at home in order to promote reading. Parents are welcomed into school to support reading in the classroom.