Children study aspects of English every day. It is split into the following main areas:
Speaking & Listening
If children speak well, with confidence, in a range of situations, they will develop strong reading and writing skills. Speaking and listening skills develop from the moment children are born through human interaction. We therefore ensure that children can develop and hone these skills at every opportunity, every day.
Reading is one of the most important skills your child will learn during their time at school. Reading, listening to and talking about stories and non-fiction develops children’s vocabulary, as they often encounter words they would rarely hear or use in everyday speech. Understanding vocabulary is vital for comprehension and also for wider learning and progress across the entire primary curriculum and beyond.
We recognise that being able to read is a key skill for life for all children, and we believe that every child can learn to read with the right teaching and support.
Our aim is that every child leaves Putteridge Primary School a confident, fluent reader, who enjoys reading across a range of different genres.
In addition to phonics, we use a variety of different reading strategies including decoding methods, teaching high frequency words through sight recognition, and discussion through picture books.
We have invested heavily in purchasing high quality texts that are both appealing and relevant, and are used as home readers, class/guided reading (including high-quality texts used as a stimulus in English lessons) and a well-stocked library section. Each class, starting in Foundation Stage, has a timetabled weekly library slot, in which to immerse themselves in the world of reading (books are organised by age-appropriateness, fiction and non-fiction and by category, ensuring that selecting reading material is an uncomplicated task).
Guided reading sessions take place from Foundation Stage (the latter part of the summer term) through to Year 6, with an initial focus on learning matched to phonic sounds, through to developing comprehension skills of retrieval, explanation, summarisation, prediction, comparison and inference.
One to one reading occurs in Foundation Stage and vulnerable readers across the school are identified in each class to ensure reading progression, pace and fluency, understanding of vocabulary and a love of reading.
The importance of reading is recognised throughout the school and is encouraged and rewarded through the use of stickers in Foundation Stage, Book Bugs in Key Stage 1, Reading Awards in Lower Key Stage 2 and Bookworm Badges in Upper Key Stage 2.
Children will be able to write well if their speaking & listening and reading skills are fluent. Our cross-curricular approach ensures that children are provided with a wealth of writing opportunities – not just during English lessons. Children are taught how to write with an audience in mind, how to use a rich vocabulary to convey thoughts and ideas and how, through using accurate spelling and punctuation, the reader is able to receive the full meaning intended.
As a school, we have adopted the Twinkl Phonics programme.
Twinkl Phonics is a DfE validated full systematic, synthetic phonics programme. It contains everything needed to deliver phonics teaching to children from the very beginning of learning to read and write to full fluency. It delivers GPCs in a clear and rigorous way so that skills are built progressively over time, ensuring that children have a secure base from which to develop.
Twinkl Phonics is a scheme based on Letters and Sounds. It follows the same sounds order throughout Nursery and Foundation Stage and through the early weeks of Year 1. Teaching of Phase 5 and 6 GPCs and suffixes have been spread out in Twinkl Phonics to give more even coverage throughout Year 1 and 2. This is to ensure that children have ample time to secure new learning before moving on to the next sound. All the sounds covered in Phase 5 and 6 of Letters and Sounds are taught during Levels 5 and 6 in Twinkl Phonics.
(GPC is short for 'grapheme-phoneme correspondence', and it means the relationship between a phoneme (unit of sound) and its graphemes (or symbols).