Overview of English at Peckover Primary
A Creative Approach
At Peckover we strive to make the teaching and learning of English an integral part of our creative curriculum. Speaking and listening, writing and reading are taught as much as possible in the purposeful context of the thematic curriculum. Children have daily writing opportunities that support their next steps. Across a year children will be taught to write in a range of narrative, non-narrative and poetic genres . The new National curriculum for English is used by all staff as the key tool to planning in order to provide clear progression and expectations within Keystage 1 and Key stage 2.
Reading at Peckover
‘Reading develops your brain, provides a window into the world around you and helps you do better in all school subjects’.
At Peckover we strive to make the teaching and learning of English an integral part of our creative curriculum. Speaking and listening, writing and reading are taught as much as possible in the purposeful context of the thematic curriculum.
We believe it is vital for children to regularly read a wide variety of different genres. The children read individually, in groups and as a whole class, using a variety of books from different reading schemes including Oxford Reading Tree, which are colour coded in book bands which relate to children’s reading ages. We have high expectations of all children and expect them to read at least four times a week at home. We have beautiful reading chests which include brand new picture books for us to enjoy daily as well as always being read to at the end of the day.
Guided reading sessions occur at least 4 times a week in each class. All children read in a focused adult led group at least once a week. During other sessions, in Key stage 1 and Key stage 2, children are engaged in purposeful independent reading activities. The books for guided reading come from a range of sources including quality picture books, novels and schemes, to ensure a breadth and depth of quality texts. Where appropriate books are colour banded to support progression. To support children at the earliest stages of learning to read teachers and TAs use phonic based reading books to support the application and acquisition of phonic skills.
Phonics at Peckover
We learn to read, to read to learn. We teach reading in a way that will inspire our children to be life-long lovers of literature.
We instil a sense of awe and wonder around books and we provide children with memorable experiences which connect learning to read with pleasure.
At Peckover, we really enjoy Storytime Phonics which is our new Phonics scheme we use to create exciting experiences helping them to learn to read and develop a love of reading. Every Phonics lesson is contextualised through the use of a ‘real’ book. The inspirational lessons enable and empower our teachers to engage the whole class, regardless of ability, on a multi-sensory journey where learning phonics has a real purpose. Each sound has an action linked to the story, so children remember and relate the sound directly to the book
.Every day the children enjoy dressing up, reading real life books, and learning new sounds along with caption actions to bring them to life.
Storytime Phonics is used as the prime phonics scheme at Peckover school. A range of resources support teaching whilst we ensure fidelity to this programme alongside a conscience reliance on visuals and real objects to make the learning as real and meaningful as possible. In Key stage 2 the PiXL code and reading intervention is used to support those not yet secure with their reading skills.
At Key stage 2 SPAG sessions are taught as discrete daily sessions that link into the teaching of English. This practice develops during year 2 as the need for the daily phonics session becomes less.
Children are read to daily to ensure they experience a rich and varied diet of reading regardless of their ability to decode text. Teachers will endeavour to share their love of literature with their classes. A range of authors and genres will be covered through out the year – particularly each year groups focus authors. These are authors whose writing the children will meet across the year and become familiar with. On Fridays all children will enjoy ‘Picture book Friday’ when all teachers will share a favourite picture book with their classes.
Handwriting is taught using the PenPals scheme to guide progression and support planning. All teachers will model and directly teach handwriting for 5 minutes each day. The children will write in books with lined pages similar to their usual exercise books to support the transition of these skills into everyday writing. Handwriting sheets will be used in frequently. The writing repeater IWB tool is used regularly to allow teachers to monitor the writing of children whilst their modelled formation continues.
In key stage 1 and key stage 2 all children will be set targets in consultation with parents, teachers and children. These targets are regularly reviewed and updated. Children targets will be displayed in their writing books and Learning logs and regularly referred to, particularly during guided reading and guided writing sessions.
We have devised our own system of assessing our children in Reading, Writing, Maths and Science. Regular tests and children's class work help to inform teachers of a child's current level of Knowledge against their year groups curriculum and next steps in learning. This would report as a child is emerging, developing or secure at this curriculum.