Reading underpins the whole curriculum and is embedded throughout both English lessons and through cross-curricular teaching. We want every child to gain the reading skills they need to be able to read independently and for enjoyment.
Pupils start their reading journey as soon as they start school through daily class reading sessions, where staff and children share and enjoy a wide range of high quality texts as a class and in small groups. We have devised our own ‘Reading River’, outlining 5 books that children will read when they are 5 (EYFS), 6 they will read when they are 6 (Year 1), 7 when they are 7 (Year 2), all the way up to 11 books when they are 11 in Year 6. Please click on the ‘Reading River’ image to see a larger copy or click HERE to see a list of the books.
Our pupils develop a love of reading through sharing books at home and school with both adults and peers. This year, we have introduced ‘Free Choice Friday’ – a dedicated time for children to share and enjoy a range of texts in the classroom and develop a love of reading. Please see our launch PowerPoint HERE for more details.
Pupils are taught to read independently in daily phonics sessions (Read, Write, Inc), which starts in EYFS and develops until children are confidently able to decode words and read with appropriate fluency. In EYFS and Key Stage 1, we have recently invested in the Read Write Inc Book Bag Books, which link directly to individual children’s phonics knowledge. Children are given a book to take home and read, which is the same book as their peers in their phonics group and which is carefully chosen by their phonics’ teacher.
In Year 2 and Key Stage 2, children benefit from regular fluency lessons, while comprehension skills are developed through Guided Reading sessions, where pupils’ unpick high-quality texts through deep discussion with the teacher. High quality texts drive the English and topic lessons and children are immersed in texts to support all areas of curriculum. To support this development, from the end of Year 2 onwards, we use a reading scheme called ‘Big Cats’ (published by Collins) which offers the children a chance to read a mix of fiction stories, playscripts and poetry and non-fiction books with facts and different sorts of layouts, all the way up to Level 18 at which level the child can be considered to be a very fluent and confident reader. The class teacher will make a judgement when a child is ready to become a ‘free reader’ which means the child chooses (with guidance) their own appropriate reading material.
The most important factor, however, in children’s progress in reading is the support of parents and carers so please enjoy sharing books (in English and / or your home language) and hear your child read as much as possible at home. Together we can make a difference.
Spoken language is developed across the whole curriculum. Spoken language underpins the development of reading and writing. Opportunities for oracy are planned to develop spoken language and listening skills such asking and answering questions, using the conventions for discussion and debate as well as improvising and devising drama. Each classroom has Talk for Learning prompts displayed and children are encouraged to use these when asking and answering questions or within class discussions. Below are some examples. High-quality vocabulary is the golden thread that runs through our curriculum, ensuring Tier 2 (higher level descriptive) and Tier 3 (subject specific) words are taught, understood, and used accurately by children to enhance their oracy.
Teaching of writing develops pupils’ competence in spelling, handwriting and composition, including how to plan, revise and evaluate their writing. Pupils are taught how to effectively compose their writing, which involves forming, articulating and communicating ideas, and then organising them coherently for a reader. Pupils are taught to write with purpose and context, showing an awareness of the audience, and are taught how to use a range of vocabulary and grammar skills. High-quality vocabulary (Tier 2 and Tier 3 words) are evident in children’s written work, too. Handwriting formation is taught in EYFS linked to their phonics and developed into cursive handwriting from Year 2 onwards.
Spelling, Grammar and Punctuation
At Gossops Green, we value the importance of developing pupils’ vocabulary. This is taught explicitly and when it arises naturally. Pupils are taught how to work out and clarify the meanings of unknown words through the root word and the context. Standard English is modelled and expected from pupils in their speaking and writing. Grammar and punctuation is taught explicitly and through writing lessons, which helps pupils develop and improve their own writing skills.
English is at the heart of everything we do at Gossops Green Primary. We intend for all children to develop a love of writing and to be able to express their thoughts and ideas clearly and creatively through the written word. We nurture a culture where pupils take pride in their writing, can write clearly, imaginatively, and accurately, and adapt their language and style for a range of contexts.
We aim to enable pupils to be able to confidently use the essential skills of grammar, punctuation, and spelling, as well as writing effectively and coherently for different purposes, drawing on their reading to inform the vocabulary and grammar of their writing. We set high expectations for all our pupils to take pride in their work alongside allowing their imaginations to flourish.
We believe that children need to develop a secure knowledgebase in Literacy, which follows a clear pathway of progression as they advance through the primary curriculum. Our carefully sequenced, broad, and balanced curriculum, underpinned by inclusive practice, aims to provide our pupils with the opportunity to build on their experiences to achieve their goals. We whole-heartedly promote high standards of literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment.
Through using high-quality texts, immersing children in vocabulary-rich learning environments and ensuring new curriculum expectations and the progression of skills are met, our children will be exposed to Tier 2 and Tier 3 vocabulary, creative and a continuous English curriculum which will not only enable them to become literate but will also develop a love of reading, creative writing and purposeful speaking and listening. Children will develop into confident and articulate communicators of the spoken words. They will be able to express their opinions with clarity, consideration of the listener and a discerning use of a broad range of vocabulary. They will be able to demonstrate excellent listening skills and ask insightful questions.
Progressive layering of knowledge, embedded in long-term memory:
Recognise and use grammatical features (e.g. word classes, punctuation)
A progressive journey from individual word recognition to reading unfamiliar, complex mono-syllabic words
Progressively build on developing a wide and rich vocabulary
Applying knowledge of different genres to write effectively and coherently for different purposes
Present understanding and knowledge in different ways (e.g. oral/digital presentation)
Knowledge of the writing process (planning, drafting, sharing, evaluating, revising, editing, and publishing) and recognising the importance of audience
Immersion in diverse texts, Cultural Capital, and memorable experiences ensure children have a deeper conceptual understanding that leads to high-quality writing outcomes
Read with fluency, expression, and prosody (rhythm, stress, and intonation of speech)
Select, and use with purpose, grammatical features across a range of genres
Select vocabulary for purpose, considering the audience and intent
Children will be able to write with a legible, confident script and with correct orientation and size of letters in relationship to one another
English Curriculum Implementation
To achieve our intent, our curriculum will provide the following:
Adapted learning and teaching to support those with additional needs, including English as an Additional Language, through the pre-teaching of vocabulary, the use of worked examples as models and a focus on creating cross-curricular links
Adapted learning and teaching to challenge all pupils to write effectively for a range of purposes and audiences, selecting the appropriate form and drawing independently on what they have read as models for their own writing (e.g. literary language, characterisation, structure)
Develop an ethos where a ‘love of reading’ helps to foster empathetic learners
Our English Curriculum Map includes:
A progressive, sequential journey of knowledge, skills and concepts from EYFS to Year 6, encompassing the depth and breadth of the English curriculum
Adjusting, adapting and assessing in the classroom, which is crucial for the progress of all pupils
Intentional opportunities to address potential cultural capital disadvantage through the use of ERICs, VIPERS and using high-quality texts which helps develop learners understanding
A focus on subject specific vocabulary to equip children with the language to express their authorial voice with precision and confidence
An appreciation of our rich and varied literary heritage whereby learners explore new ways of writing for a wider audience
Explicit links with high quality texts which provide contextual links
Key outcomes form the foundation of prior and subsequent learning
Higher order, subject-specific questions for pupils to respond to and demonstrate knowledge and understanding of
Enhanced learning through memorable experiences and visiting experts
Learning opportunities that:
Encourage pupils to develop awareness of the power of the written word to express ideas, emotions, concepts and knowledge Optimise pupils’ reading capabilities so that the breadth and scope of literature in all its forms can be chosen, understood and enjoyed
English Curriculum Impact
Pupils enjoy reading and writing across a range of genres.
Pupils enjoy reading regularly, for information and for enjoyment, and discuss books with excitement and interest.
Pupils enjoy writing and use the features of different genres and styles and for different purposes and audiences.
Pupils understand a wide range of vocabulary that they use within their writing.
Pupils have a good knowledge of how to adapt their writing based on the context and audience.
Pupils leave primary school being able to effectively apply spelling rules and patterns they have been taught.
Parents and carers will have a good understanding of how they can support pupils’ reading development at home.
Parents and carers will have a good understanding of how they can support spelling, grammar and composition at home.
Pupils recognise that language and the written word are powerful tools which used with intelligence, consideration and insight, can change the world.
Pupils leave our school equipped with the skills, knowledge and language to transition successfully to their next phase of education.