English is one of the cornerstones of children's educational experience and has several aspects, covered in the National Curriculum and at Wenlock. Whilst English is of course a standalone subject, we see that it underpins learning across the curriculum. This approach enables children to leave us with the skills needed to progress onto secondary school and later life. Teachers therefore consider the different aspects individually whilst also building links between them. English comprised of the following strands:
- Spoken Language
- Reading – word reading and comprehension
- Writing – transcription (spelling and handwriting); composition and vocabulary, grammar and punctuation
We recognise the importance of spoken language in pupils' development across the whole curriculum. Spoken language underpins the development of reading and writing, and as such forms the starting point for teachers when planning for progression in these areas.
Reading is taught in several ways at Wenlock. One method is through whole-class guided reading, which focuses on understanding, deduction and inference skills. Children also have 1:1 reading sessions with class teachers, teaching assistants and other adults in school. For some children, extra reading practise is required for both word reading and comprehension.
We understand that children who enter the school in year 3 do not all join us with the same starting points in their phonics knowledge. Therefore we build in relevant interventions and teaching for these children in order for them to improve in their word reading and decoding skills.
Spellings are taught and tested in classes, with a focus on balancing both the statutory word lists for each year group and spelling rules. In addition to this, children continue to receive regular handwriting lessons, based on the Nelson scheme books.
Wherever possible, the writing curriculum at Wenlock fully ties in with the Thematic Curriculum in which foundation subjects are taught. Links are made so that children can learn about a topic fully across a wide range of subjects. For example, whilst focusing on The Vikings in History, children may also be using this knowledge to write in their English lessons. The vocabulary, grammar and punctuation required for each year group are taught in context so that children have the knowledge to be able to apply them effectively to the genre being studied. This enables them to use vocabulary, grammar and punctuation for purpose.
Below you can find details of the different writing genres taught in each year group. As the Thematic Curriculum has been updated across the school for the academic year 2017-18, this will be amended as the year progresses to allow teachers to plan lessons which excite and fully engage children, whilst covering the necessary content on the National Curriculum.