I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book. J.K. Rowling
English Curriculum Statement
The English Curriculum at Glenmead is designed to give all pupils an engaging and creative learning experience to become lifelong, inquisitive learners, ensuring pupils are taught necessary skills to read, write, speak and listen well which will equip them with the fundamental tools to achieve both here and beyond.
English is planned and delivered through a variety of quality, relevant texts that span a range of genres, carefully linked to appropriate topics. It is our intention, through immersion in quality texts linked to our topic-based learning journey, to instil a love for reading, a passion for discovery, a wide-ranging vocabulary and with that, the confidence to explore their imagination in a safe, respectful learning environment. Within this are numerous opportunities for each child to deepen their understanding of the world, the people in it and to be independent learners as they do so.
As reading is a key life skill, at Glenmead, Early Reading is taught through a rigorous programme of phonics lessons taught daily. As a school, we have worked closely with the English Hub at Little Sutton Primary School and follow Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised programme. This is complemented by fully decodable books linked to the Big Cat Phonics scheme published by Collins.
Pupils are taught to write in a variety of styles and for differing audiences with increasing depth as they travel through the school, so they can be confident when writing for different purposes in future education and beyond. Through a Talk4Writing approach, pupils are enabled creativity, underpinned by writing skills such as internalising, planning, innovation and toolkit building. We aim to develop pupil’s ability to produce fluent, detailed, well-structured, independently edited and improved writing with a clear audience and intent, in which there is still a focus on grammar, spelling and punctuation. Using Letter Join, we aim for pupils to have consistently joined, well-presented handwriting they can be proud of when looking back at their work they have produced, as well as enabling others to read their work easily.
English is a core subject of the National Curriculum and a requirement for progress as it reinforces all other areas of the curriculum. Teaching of all aspects English is given a high priority within school and within other subjects, as we believe it develops a child’s confidence to communicate creatively and imaginatively, preparing them for their future journey through education and beyond.
- Delivering an English curriculum which is sequenced to develop the acquisition of key knowledge and skills
- Ensuring every child becomes a reader, a writer and confident speaker by the time they leave Glenmead.
- Promoting and instilling a love for reading, writing and high-quality literature in pupils at all ages.
At Glenmead, our values are at the heart of all we do (respect, enjoy, achieve): we strive to provide opportunities for pupils to develop their own core values whilst instilling the Fundamental British Values in many opportunities within units of work. For example, pupils will learn about respect through exploring characters’ relationships, friendships and behaviours. Pupils will be provided with the opportunity to discuss, debate and justify their own views and opinions, which in turn will develop empathy for others. Also, exposing your child to famous authors and poetry, to develop your child’s appreciation of culture and moral / social aspects of life. Furthermore, we promote drama, class-created work and group work in English at Glenmead, helping your child to learn to work with others and enjoy expressing themselves creatively, whilst appreciating and respecting others’ points of view.
Reading Progression Maps
This programme overview shows the progression of GPCs and tricky words that we teach term-by-term.
The progression has been organised so that children are taught from the simple to more complex GPCs, as well as taking into account the frequency of their occurrence in the most commonly encountered words. All the graphemes taught are practised in words, sentences, and later on, in fully decodable books. Children review and revise GPCs and words, daily, weekly and across terms and years, in order to move this knowledge into their long-term memory.
Children need to learn to read as quickly as reasonably possible, so they can move from learning to read, to reading to learn, giving them access to the treasure house of reading. Our expectations of progression are aspirational yet achievable if we maintain pace, practice and participation by all children. Children who are not keeping up with
their peers are provided with additional practice immediately through keep-up sessions.
BIG CAT Phonics is a fully decodable reading scheme that complements the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised phonics teaching progression. When our pupils bring a book home, it will help them to practise decoding and applying the sounds they have already been learning in class, as well as to practise reading with well developed prosody (expression) and to talk about the characters and events in the text.
We encourage parents to support children to practise at home as much as possible, as we know that children that are supported well at home learn to read at a much quicker pace than those who are unsupported outside school.
We are a Talk for Writing School
A number of years ago, Glenmead implemented a new approach to teaching writing called Talk for Writing. This approach is used from EYFS through to Year 6. Talk for Writing was developed by the author Pie Corbett. It is fundamentally based on the key principles of how children learn. Talk for Writing enables children to imitate the key language they need orally before they try reading, analysing and recording it. It is a fun, creative yet also rigorous approach to develop writers.
Talk for Writing has three key phases which work together to develop knowledge, confidence and independence in writing:
During this phase the children create actions to accompany the oral re-telling of the story. They also create story maps, using pictures and symbols, to depict actions and events from the text. The key to success for the children is that they internalise the text type through repetition and rehearsal. They also begin to look closely at the language and text features that have been used.
During this phase the teacher and the children begin to change aspects of the model text using their own ideas. They explore the text using different characters, settings or events and new ideas for descriptive language whilst sticking closely to the underlying structure. This process enables the children to write their own versions through developing their ability to generate good words and phrases. It is during this phase that children also look at how they can address their individual weaknesses to progress their writing.
During this phase the children plan and write their own story based on the text type they have been learning. They experiment with the ideas and begin to explore their own style of writing using sentence types and grammar features from the model text before finally writing their version of the text.
Talk for Writing works with any genre and has been key to Glenmead’s success in raising standards of writing across the school.
Writing Progression Map