Here at St John Henry Newman, we believe that fluency in the English language and being literacy-confident is the key to further success in life for all pupils, enabling them to access the next stage of their education and beyond. Our curriculum has been designed to ensure that pupils have opportunities to develop a love of reading. Our aim is to ensure that pupils gain a thirst for reading a range of genres and participating in discussions about the books; exploring the language used by different authors and the impact the written words have on the reader. Our curriculum has also been designed to ensure that pupils not only read for pleasure but to use books to research and gather new knowledge to extend their understanding.
We firmly believe that developing confident readers will also develop competent writers. Our aim is to ensure that pupils write clearly, accurately and coherently; write in different styles and for different purposes and audiences; develop a wide vocabulary and a solid understanding of the grammar rules and terminology appropriate for their age group. Our curriculum has also been designed to ensure that pupils are able to express themselves creatively and to communicate effectively with others.
Reading is an important part of our curriculum and is an integral part of all of our lessons. At STJHN, we teach reading through:
• Discreet comprehension lessons: We teach lessons which focus on developing pupils’ level of understanding of the text, through discussion, written and oral tasks; and the exploration of new vocabulary. Pupils will be taught to retrieve, infer, predict, summarise, analyse and evaluate a whole class text.
• Guided reading Lessons: We encourage our pupils to read for pleasure and to read widely. In these lessons, pupils explore a novel/book, developing their reading skills and their ability to understand the author’s intent, connections and links to their own experiences. Discussion and critiquing are key aspects of these lessons.
• Reading across the curriculum: We maximise opportunities for pupils to read by incorporating reading elements into all areas of the curriculum.
• Independent Reading: STJHN promotes independent reading on a daily basis. Reluctant readers, or those pupils who struggle with reading are heard reading several times a week to ensure that they make expected progress. Each classroom has a carefully-selected range of age appropriate books taken from the recommendations made in Pie Corbett’s Reading Spine. This provides quality texts for all children to access regardless of their background. Throughout the year, additional books are added into class reading corners. These books are delivered with enthusiasm by class teachers to both engage and excite the children receiving them and thus continue to develop keen readers.
Children to take books home and Reading Records to be completed and monitored by the teacher – expectation of at least 5 nights reading each week. Parents understand the expectation and can make comments in records. This is tracked electronically and class rewards systems are in place for those classes who read most consistently.
In EYFS, reading is taught through shared reading, using large print books and picture books. Pupils are taught the process of reading; learning that words and pictures have meaning. Through a range of practical activities children learn familiar stories. Pupils explore skills such as sequencing, prediction and retrieval. Using the Read, Write Inc. phonics programme our pupils are taught the initial sounds (further detail can be found in our ‘Phonics and Early Reading’ tab).
In Key Stage 1, we use Read, Write Inc. for our phonics programme. Phonic awareness helps the development of reading by segmenting and blending sounds (further detail can be found in our ‘Phonics and Early Reading’ tab). The children will be heard reading individually and in groups. Reading is taught through a shared reading approach using books that are rhythmical and have repetitive patterns. Pupils explore vocabulary, prediction, sequencing, making inferences and retrieving information. In Year 2, pupils are taught reading through a whole class approach. Pupils explore vocabulary, prediction, sequencing, making inferences and retrieving information. All classes will have a ‘class book’ used for the purpose of reading enjoyment within the class (writing may also be linked to this class novel).
In Key Stage 2, we teach reading through a whole class approach focusing on the national curriculum domains. Pupils explore vocabulary, prediction, sequencing, making inferences and retrieving information, ensuring that they are able to make justified responses using evidence from the text. Pupils explore a wide range of fiction and non-fiction texts in their foundation lessons, which are based around age-appropriate texts linked to the topic being studied. All classes will have a ‘class book’ used for the purpose of reading enjoyment within the class (writing may also be linked to this class novel).
Writing is an important part of our curriculum and is an integral part of all of our lessons. At STJHN we teach writing through:
Through the teaching of systematic phonics, our aim is for children to become fluent readers by the end of Key Stage One. This way, children can focus on developing their fluency and comprehension as they move through the school, (further detail can be found in our ‘Phonics and Early Reading’ tab). Attainment in reading is measured using the statutory assessments at the end of Key Stage One and Two. These results are measured against the reading attainment of children nationally.
The school measures impact through:
• Half termly Read Write Inc. assessments to ensure pupils are on the correct Book Bag Book
• Previous SATs papers in year 2 and year 6 to measure attainment against national standardised scores
• Pupil Voice to assess learning
Attainment in writing is measured at the end of each produced ‘Hot Task’. Progress in writing is tracked electronically using statements which have been taken from the National Curriculum. For those children who have yet to access the Year 1 statements, pre-key stage statements are used.
Termly moderations take place, to quality assure judgements made. These are either in house, or as part of a cluster of local schools.
End of Key Stage writing: teachers will assess a selection of pieces of writing in Years 2 and Year 6, using this to inform reported Teacher assessment judgements. Exemplification materials are used to support judgements made. Teachers will attend Local Authority meetings to aid them in assessing writing.
The aforementioned spelling diagnostics are used as a minimum twice yearly (Autumn and Spring Terms) but may be used more regularly at the class teacher’s discretion.