At Howardian Primary School, learners will experience a language-rich environment where oracy, reading and writing experiences are connected to ensure that they become enthusiastic, independent and reflective communicators, readers and writers. Learning will involve whole-class, shared and modelled reading and writing activities through carefully-crafted units of work. Children will have the opportunity to experience a range of relevant and age-appropriate texts spanning a range of genres, styles and multimedia to enthuse and engage the minds and hearts of the pupils, along with their love of Literacy.
When and How?
Within Key Stage Two, opportunities are made throughout the curriculum to ensure that children use language to work together effectively, ensuring links are made between spoken language, learning and development. High quality spoken language is modelled from teachers to the children. Children also have the opportunity to speak in front of peers in group work, sharing ideas, negotiating thinking, discussion such as challenge and agree, build relationships and performance opportunities.
Within Key Stage Two, high-quality Literacy lessons are delivered daily. Lessons are planned within a unit of work and each unit focuses on a particular genre, spanning from fictional themes and story plots to non-fiction genres of recounts, reports, explanations, instructions, persuasion and argument/discussion. Quality texts are used as a stimulus and models for high-quality writing and these are age-appropriate. Talk for Writing is woven into the literacy provision and, wherever possible, Literacy units are crafted around topic themes to enhance pupil’s learning and engagement further. Cold tasks are carefully designed to allow teachers to formatively assess pupils’ prior understanding of a writing genre or skill set, allowing teachers to plan carefully plan appropriate lessons based on the needs of the learners. Hot tasks are used for assessment at the end of each unit to examine pupil’s progress and attainment. This data is used to inform subsequent planning. Cross-curricular writing opportunities are also planned within other areas of the curriculum, such as science, RE and Topic.
At Howardian, we encourage children to take pride in their learning, presenting their work neatly and with their very best handwriting. In Key Stage Two we teach the children cursive handwriting and teach discrete handwriting sessions weekly. We feed our handwriting and presentation expectations into all aspects of the curriculum. Handwriting sheets can be found on our Google Classroom for extra practise at home.
Daily Guided Reading sessions take place between 9-9.30. Within the carousel of activities, children will experience reading with a teacher, reading books of English language for pleasure, weekly factual research and handwriting practise. In Key Stage 2, as well as looking at decoding, fluency and expression, reading sessions are largely focused on reading comprehension with high-quality questioning opportunities. Children are grouped based on their individual needs and these sessions form our principal teaching and assessment opportunity of reading at Howardian Primary School. On-going assessments are made in the form of notes taken during guided reading sessions. These are then used to assess progress of guided reading groups.
Our Reading Scheme include books from ‘Pearson’s Bug Club’ and ‘Oxford Reading Tree’. All books are colour banded and cross-referenced with non-scheme books to provide learners with a wide selection of reading resources as they progress up through the stages of the scheme.
From Foundation Phase to Key Stage Two (until children become ‘Free-Readers’), children take home each week one Reading Scheme book of their individual appropriate book band level.
Parents are encouraged to hear their child read aloud, in order to check fluency and understanding, as well as to encourage discussion. They are also asked to record reading done by their child other than reading from books provided by school. This gives the teacher a broader picture of the child’s reading experience and preferences, as well as information on progress at home too.
Spelling and Grammar
We are strongly committed to high-quality spelling teaching at Howardian Primary School and provide weekly spelling sessions which teach children a range of spelling strategies for phonetic words as well as spelling irregularities. These strategies include ‘See within a word’, using sayings to help remember tricky spellings, providing children a film understanding of root words, prefixes and suffixes, reminding children of spelling rules as well as irregularities (such as rules for plurals) and teaching families of words. Spelling focuses are also woven into the Literacy writing units of work where appropriate. Spelling patterns for each term are available on Google Classroom.