We are committed to developing literacy skills through uniting the important skills of reading and writing.
We teach children to read initially by a synthetic phonics approach, using the Read, Write Inc. scheme in Class 1 then supplementing it with a variety of other materials as children’s skills develop.
We are now using the Talk 4 Writing approach to develop children's understanding and skills with writing.
This scheme was introduced to the school in January 2018 and training is continuing for staff as we develop our understanding and expertise.
Talk for Writing, developed by Pie Corbett supported by Julia Strong, is powerful because it is based on the principles of how children learn. Talk for Writing enables children to imitate the key language they need for a particular topic orally before they try reading and analysing it.
Writing units are planned by each class teacher to fit the whole school long term plan and to ensure that different types of story and non-fiction writing are taught progressively through the school. An assessment called a cold task , where children show what they already know, enables the teacher to prioritise the learning for that unit.
The units usually last for three to four weeks and follow the structure of imitation, innovation and independent application. We have developed a model planning structure that supports teachers in ensuring that all of the key elements are planned for.
Teachers choose and adapt or create their own model text to fit with the tale type and children’s learning needs.
Talk for writing incorporates lot of opportunities for children to develop their understanding and ideas through shared activities, starting with the learning of the model text. Paired talk and different forms of drama enable collaborative learning and increase enjoyment. It also follows the model of 'I do' where the teacher models particular writing tasks, "we do" where related tasks are completed in groups with adult assistance and guidance and 'you do' where the children try to emulate the techniques shown themselves.
For more information click on this link to go to the Talk for Writing Website
For some of the children's own compositions, follow this link: Class 3 Poems 2019
Our school is now using Star reader and the Accelerated Reader approach to assessing reading. The children have the opportunity to select from a wide range of good quality reading books, from a well-stocked library in both Key Stages as well as book collections in the classroom. A variety of reading schemes are used flexibly to support reading development, from early decoding skills to complex and sophisticated reading comprehension.
In class, children are taught these skills directly through guided reading sessions and reinforced across the wider curriculum. At all stages, children have an individual reading book, which is brought home to read and spellings to learn. The children in upper key stage 2 learn to independently access computer based assessment activities after they have read a book. This provides the teachers with valuable information about the progress the children are making, particularly in terms of their understanding and comprehension.
Children’s progress in reading and writing is carefully monitored throughout the school. A variety of opportunities are provided across the curriculum for children to develop their writing skills. For example, writing reports, stories, poems, notes, plays, lists and diaries, and this is monitored to make suer that the same high expectations and use of skills transfers into all written work.
Children are provided with regular opportunities to develop the essential skills of speaking and listening. This is done through discussion, drama and specific listening activities in pairs, groups and as a class. Good oral work enhances pupils’ understanding of language in both oral and written forms.
From Foundation Stage, children are taught letter formation following our handwriting scheme, which enables children to develop an independent, mature style of writing. Good presentation is expected at all times and displaying children’s work is an integral part of this process. Ultimately we want each child to develop a fluent, legible and attractive style of handwriting.
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