Our English Subject Leaders are:
Writing and Grammar: Mrs Robinson and Mrs Grindey
Reading and Phonics: Mrs Holden, Miss Adamson and Miss Barnes
At Disley Primary School we believe that a quality English curriculum should develop children’s love of reading, writing and discussion. We aim to inspire an appreciation of our rich and varied literary heritage and a habit of reading widely and often. We recognise the importance of nurturing a culture where children take pride in their writing, can write clearly and accurately and adapt their language and style for a range of contexts. We want to inspire children to be confident in the art of speaking and listening and who can use discussion to communicate and further their learning.
We value reading as a key life skill, and are dedicated to enabling our pupils to become lifelong readers. We believe reading is crucial for academic success and so we ensure we have a holistic approach to the teaching of reading. It is our intention that the children at Disley:
We believe that children need to develop a secure knowledge-base in English, which follows a clear pathway of progression as they advance through the primary curriculum. We believe that a secure basis in literacy skills is crucial to a high quality education and will give our children the tools they need to participate fully as a member of society.
We teach English as whole class lessons, so that all children have access to the age-related skills and knowledge contained in the National Curriculum. Within lessons, teachers and teaching assistants offer targeted support to enable all children to achieve at an age-related level wherever possible. This may involve a greater level of scaffolding and access to additional support materials such as scaffolded materials, Word Banks or a greater level of modelling.
The format from ‘The Write Stuff’ is utilised across the school. Children are given opportunities to extend their writing in a variety of ways, including through showing greater control in their writing, a deeper understanding of the impact that their writing has on the reader and by using a higher level of vocabulary and grammar features.
We have a skills based approach to reading using VIPERS (Vocabulary, Inference, Prediction, Explain, Retrieve and Sequence/Summarise) skills within regular Whole Class Guided Reading lessons. We use a variety of high quality texts, which link to our topic when applicable, and all children in the class will access it together. Once an understanding of the text is in place, we work on the VIPERS skills. In our school, our reading curriculum links closely with our writing curriculum; we use a text-based approach that enables us to create opportunities for reading, discussion and writing within English and reading lessons.
In EYFS and early KS1, there is a greater emphasis on phonics; this is then applied throughout the rest of the school to consolidate what has been learnt. Within daily phonic sessions, children have the opportunity to revisit previous learning, practise and apply new skills in structured but engaging ways. We use the ‘Monster Phonics’ SSP scheme throughout the school, beginning from when the children first start Reception. The colour-coded aspects of the scheme enable the children to engage in a multi-sensory way. Phonics lessons take place 5x per week in Reception and 5x per week in KS1.
We encourage reading for pleasure through children having a choice of challenging and enriching texts as well as building in time for children to read independently and as part of a whole class. All children have daily opportunities to read a variety of material in school, including regularly with an adult.
Each week, the children are given a decodable Monster Phonics book to take home that reflects the learning taking place in school. The children are also provided with a ‘reading for pleasure’ book that they can share with an adult or read independently.
Spellings are taught according to the rules and words contained in Appendix 1 of the English National Curriculum. In EYFS and KS1, spellings are taught in small groups through phonic sessions. In KS2, Teachers focus on a spelling rule per week for children to practise. The children practise spellings, which have been identified by themselves and their class teacher as words which they need to work on. Children may practise these spellings at home and in school. They have these spellings displayed on a ‘Focus Five’ sheet and are encouraged to use them within their lessons. Once spellings have been used correctly on three occasions, children will move onto a new spelling to practise.
Grammar and Punctuation:
Grammar and punctuation knowledge and skills are taught through English lessons as much as possible. Teachers plan to teach the required skills through the genres of writing that they are teaching, linking it to the genre to make it more connected with the intended writing outcome. Teachers sometimes focus on particular grammar and punctuation skills as standalone lessons, if they feel that the class need additional lessons to embed and develop their understanding or to consolidate skills.
English Lesson Sequence:
Each year group have a yearly overview of the writing genres, both narrative and non-fiction, that they will teach. These have been planned to ensure correct coverage of the key genres as well as build on skills from year to year. Units will take between two and four weeks to complete, and the outcome of each unit will be an Extended Write which will be used to assess the pupil’s skills against the agreed success criteria. Every narrative unit is linked to a carefully chosen text that acts as a stimulus for teaching the identified text, word and sentence level features that children will be expected to include in their extended writing outcome for that unit. A WAGOLL – What a good one looks like – is created based on the stimulus text and supports pupils to identify and mimic the identified features in their own writing. Non-fiction units are also taught through a quality WAGOLL that may be based on a stimulus text or may be related to another curriculum area.
Marking and Feedback:
Feedback and marking should be completed, where possible, within the lesson. All marking and feedback is given in line with our marking and feedback policy.
Summative assessments will be entered into the OTRACK system each term. Teachers will use their professional judgement alongside year group assessment grids to determine whether a child is working within age-related expectations, above or below. They will base their judgements on the quality of the extended write that pupils produce at the end of each unit, and determine to what extent pupils have met the agreed success criteria for that genre of writing.
Regardless of background, ability or additional needs, by the time children leave Disley: