English

English intent statement:

To deliver an exciting, innovative English curriculum which enables and empowers children’s written and oral communication and creativity.

Rationale 

At Rivington, we recognise the central importance of English, as a subject in its own right, and as the most cohesive area of learning. Gaining and using skills in language not only affects the child’s progress in school, but also has a profound influence upon the course of his or her whole life. We aim to develop pupils’ abilities within an integrated programme of Speaking & Listening, Reading & Writing. Pupils will be given opportunities to develop their use, knowledge and understanding of spoken and written English within a broad and balanced curriculum, with opportunities to consolidate and reinforce taught literacy skills. 

How you can support your child in these areas:

  • Daily reading at home to an adult will have a large impact on your child’s progress. Discussing texts will deepen children’s comprehension. Having children read aloud to you will also develop their fluency and allow them further opportunity to apply their phonics knowledge. 
  • Reading challenging texts to your children, as well as encouraging them to read widely, will expose them to high order vocabulary which will improve their writing when applied. Sharing stories, poems; as well as non-fiction texts e.g. newspapers, magazines, information texts will encourage reading widely and promote reading for pleasure and for different purposes.  Model using expression.
  • Weekly spellings are given out to consolidate the teaching of spellings- helping your child to practise, encouraging the use of the spelling strategies taught.
  • Promote writing opportunities at home e.g. letters to relatives, writing stories, writing recounts about trips out, research projects. Encourage your children to check their punctuation and check for sense. 
  • Ensure home learning tasks are completed with their best effort.
  • Encourage correct grammar used when speaking or writing.
  • Promote and model being an active and interested listener. 
  • Attend workshops run in school; read information sent home on how to further support your child.

 

Phonics

Phonics is taught every day at Rivington from Nursery to Year 2.  It is also taught in KS2 for children who need additional support with reading and writing.  We follow the guidelines set out in Letters and Sounds and complement this with the Actiphons Scheme. Children in Year 2 then move onto Support for Spelling.

Nursery – Children begin in Nursery with pre- phonics activities.  These come from Letters and Sounds Phase 1 and help to develop their auditory discrimination.  They discriminate between different sounds in the environment, in nature and in music.  Once they are able to hear sounds in words, they begin phonics activities from Phase 2.

Reception – Children in Reception work through Phase 2 and 3 from Letters and Sounds using the Actiphons songs and actions to support their learning.  Through daily Carpet Times, they learn all the sounds that letters make as well as the sounds that combinations of letters make when put together, such as th, ee, ing.  These are called digraphs and trigraphs.  The structure of the lessons is the same every day.  They start with consolidating previous learning, learning new sounds then using what they have learnt by reading and writing words with these sounds.

Year 1 – Phonics activities in Year 1 follow the same structure as in Reception.  They begin with Phase 4 Letters and Sounds which consolidates much of Phase 3 and puts the learning into context; children use what they have learnt to read whole texts and write sentences.  Phase 5 then works through all the remaining digraphs and trigraphs in the English language.  Children are taught to decode words including pseudo words which may have unusual combinations of sounds together.  In the Summer Term, they sit the Year 1 Phonics Check.

Year 2 – Phonics lessons in Year 2 focus on consolidating previous learning as well as teaching correct spelling rules and patterns.  Lessons follow the Support for Spelling scheme.

This guide shows you how to Pronounce Phonics

Reading in the Early Years and Key Stage 1

Children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 are taught to read using a variety of strategies:

  • To decode unfamiliar words by using their phonological knowledge
  • To use pictures in the book so that they will understand what the unfamiliar word might say
  • To read onto the next word so that the context will help them to understand what the unfamiliar word might say

In Reception the children will read to their teacher or Nursery Nurse in a one to one situation at least once a week.  In Year 1 and Year 2, some children will continue to read in a one to one situation with the class teacher or teaching assistant if they need additional support.  Once their reading has become fluent, they will participate in a Guided Reading session within a small group led by the class teacher.

All classes in KS1 have a Carousel Reading session where children rotate around a variety of different reading activities, some led by a teacher or teaching assistant and some where the children will work independently or within a group.  These may include drama, writing book reviews, describing characters, reading circles etc.

All children take home reading books.  It could be a book that is being read during the Guided Reading session or a reading scheme book.  The main scheme that is used at Rivington is Oxford Reading Tree but this is complemented by a range of other schemes also.

Reading & Spelling in Key Stage 2

Children across KS2 are taught spelling using Support for Spelling.

In this way they learn key words that are appropriate for their year group and also learn spelling rules for their year group.

There is a dedicated spelling lesson in which children may do spelling games, research, look, cover, write check etc.

Spellings are sent home and are tested by way of a dictation.

All classes in KS2 have a Guided Reading Session. Alongside this at Reading is in-built to our units of work which are saturated with opportunities to develop reading and comprehension skills.

We believe that class reads and reads used within the English units should challenge and open the children up to a wealth of new worlds and language.  Children should encounter high-level texts which broaden their horizons and allow them to reason and learn about the rich cultural heritage we possess.

Helpful links: 

https://www.booktrust.org.uk/books-and-reading/tips-and-advice/reading-tips/how-to-read-with-your-child/ – tips/advice for reading with your child.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M4Sl87VPX_4 – a video with tips for reading with your child.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ksblMiliA8 – a video that models the correct way to pronounce phonemes.

https://global.oup.com/education/content/children/issues/phonics-for-parents/?region=uk – information about phonics. 

https://schoolreadinglist.co.uk/ – reading lists.

http://www.brailescofeprimary.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/10/Spelling-Parent-Workshop-PDF.pdf – information about the spelling programme we follow in school, as well as the spelling strategies the children are taught. 

http://bss.oakgrovestockport.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Talking-Together.pdf – guidance on spelling and listening activities.

https://www.teachyourmonstertoread.com/accounts/sign_up

https://www.lovereading4kids.co.uk/ – LoveReading4Kids is the biggest and best recommendation site for children’s books.