At Oulton First School, we believe that proficiency in English is fundamental to our pupils’ success and enrichment.
We will ensure that all of our pupils will become skilled readers and writers. All children should make sufficient progress to meet age related expectations or above. We aim for our children to have a broad vocabulary, a key component in speaking, reading and writing at all ages. We aim for all of our pupils to be able to speak and write confidently and competently in formal and in informal situations and will provide opportunities for this to be practised. Pupils will be taught to apply their writing skills across all curriculum subjects and themes which have been carefully developed around high-quality, challenging texts. Pupils will become competent readers of a range of text types, and will be encouraged to develop a lifelong love of reading.
We have designed our curriculum to ensure that children have many opportunities to develop a love of English and to become proficient readers and writers. Our aim is to provide the children with access to texts from a wide range of authors, covering fiction, non-fiction and poetry for enjoyment, for gathering new knowledge and for broadening their understanding. A love of books is modelled and shared throughout the school.
Phonics teaching takes place daily in EYFS and KS1, using the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Scheme. These daily phonics lessons help to develop the skills which underpin reading and writing. Reading practice sessions take place three times each week.
In LKS2, reading teaching follows a whole-class approach, with daily reading for practice and pleasure sessions focusing on a variety of fiction, non-fiction and poetry.
For all age groups, other daily reading opportunities are woven into the curriculum to develop wider reading skills.
Each class has a timetabled library lesson where children go to the school library to choose a book for themselves. Children are given many opportunities to share books and book recommendations with their peers.
Pupils are inspired in reading and writing by author and poet visits, World Book Day, National Poetry Day, cross-curricular visits, theatre trips and engaging in the Summer Libraries Reading Challenge. KS2 pupils visit the local town library as a class, make a virtual visit to the Hay Festival and have also taken part in virtual storytelling visits from Settle Stories. We provide a wide variety of diverse as well as culturally relevant fiction and non-fiction books for the children to enjoy.
Writing is taught from Nursery through Reception, with children being given many opportunities to develop gross and fine motor skills and to handle mark-making tools such as brushes, chalks, pens, crayons and pencils.
The Purple Mash spelling scheme is followed in KS1 and 2; handwriting is taught discretely throughout the school, initially with a non-cursive script. Only when children can form all letters correctly are they taught to join them.
An adapted Talk For Writing approach is taken to the teaching of writing throughout the school. We use modelled and shared written texts which equip children to write their own plans and story maps. Pupils talk through their writing and rehearse sentences where appropriate before starting their own draft. Vocabulary is explicitly taught and children are encouraged to “magpie” words and phrases which they do with increasing independence as they move through the school. Grammar is taught with reference to the texts being studied in English lessons.
Opportunities are given for writing for pleasure, ranging from writing stations in EYFS to “Free Write” sessions in LKS2.
Pupils are equipped to independently edit and improve their own work and the work of their peers. Time is built into the curriculum for this; editing skills are taught and children use blue pens for editing their writing.
The text types to be taught are mapped across the year groups; where text types are taught in subsequent year groups there is appropriate challenge and greater detail included in the task.
Children who are at risk of falling behind at Oulton are swiftly identified and given appropriate intervention.
All of our children are confident in using a range of vocabulary. They make good progress in their acquisition of phonics. All children are confident in their application of phonics to their reading and writing.
By the time they leave our school in Y4, pupils are able to read and write competently. A love of reading and writing is instilled in our children by a culture of enthusiasm for English from staff, their peers and visitors.
Children are able to access a broad and balanced curriculum at the next stage of their learning.
Resources for parents to support Phonics at home can be found on the Little Wandle section of the website.
Past Phonic Screen Papers
Read free books online with:
(Register online with your Staffordshire library card and code from library)
Reception: Health e-newsletter
The Families’ Health and Wellbeing (0-19) Service is the local Health Visiting and School Nursing service. They offer support to schools and parents of children aged 0 to 19 years around lots of health related topics to help children. Please follow the link to an e-leaflet, which introduces you...
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