English is taught to the requirements of the National Curriculum for children in Key Stages One and Two and according to the Curriculum for the Early Years Foundation Stage for those children in Reception.
At St George’s we consider the teaching of English to be integral and fundamental to the whole of the primary curriculum. Our objectives come from the National Curriculum 2014. English is taught daily with teachers structuring lessons creatively to engage and accommodate the needs of all the children. Interesting and interactive activities are planned for the children enabling them to acquire discreet skills progressively. Children are exposed to a wide range of quality texts and have ample opportunities to practice and apply their skills through shared and guided reading and writing lessons, with speaking and listening activities linked to both.
Reading lies at the heart of our curriculum at St Georges. We are committed to enabling our pupils to become lifelong readers and we believe reading is key for academic success.
In school, children are taught to read accurately, fluently and with both understanding and enjoyment. They are taught how to respond sensitively and critically to a wide range of texts and use reference materials with confidence for a range of purposes.
EYFS and Key Stage One
Please click on the following link to find out more about how our youngest children begin their reading journey through our daily phonics lessons.
A workshop for parents of Reception pupils is held to introduce early reading and encourage parental support.
Key Stage Two
Children take part in phonics lessons until they become fluent readers. For home reading, a wide range of texts are then available for children to choose from with the help of their teacher. These include books from Oxford Reading Tree, Rapid Readers and Project 'X' as well as a large selection of other books which have been colour banded in order to monitor suitability and progress for each child.
Children are expected to read at home daily from early on. Parents are encouraged to read with their children throughout the primary years and are supported by staff to enable them to do this - 'Reading Record' books are given to each child for parents to record their home reading in. Reading incentives are also in place in each year group, such as bringing 'Reading Buddies' in to school to encourage children to complete as much home reading as possible.
Every child has access to the Lexia Core5 Reading programme. This is a fun computer-based program that supports and builds on our curriculum and focuses on developing reading skills in six areas: phonological awareness, phonics, structural analysis, fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension.
At St George's we use VIPERS to help our children develop specific reading skills. During a unit of English work, discrete reading lessons focus on the following skills so that the children become confident at tackling a variety of reading questions linked to texts of increasing difficulty as they progress through the school.
All teachers provide a 'print rich' environment and stimulate children's interest in books and reading. Every classroom has an area devoted to class books and the school organises events each year to promote reading. Some of these include 'National Story Telling Week', 'Book Week', competitions, book clubs and fairs.
The school has a small library containing fiction, non fiction and poetry books. All classes have a timetabled slot to visit the library so that they can choose books and listen to stories. This supports the children's development of personal book preferences meaning they are more likely to be motivated to read for pleasure.
Children are taught to write with growing confidence and precision in a widening variety of forms for different purposes and to discuss and evaluate their work. They learn to punctuate accurately, spell correctly and write in a legible hand.
Phonics is taught in daily sessions from Reception and across Key Stage 1. Pupils in Key Stage 2 requiring phonics teaching are also taught in 'phase' groups. Pupils are expected to apply these skills to their work in class and take work home to consolidate and practise phonics skills taught in class.
Children are taught spelling rules and patterns including how to learn spellings (meta-cognitive approach). We do not give weekly spelling lists to learn for a formal test but expect that children will learn spellings as part of their homework routine and provide words for practise. These are appropriate for the age of the child (based on the Framework expectations) and include words relating to current topics, scientific and mathematical vocabulary.
How can you help at home?
Parents play a huge role in supporting reading at home. Research shows that learning to read – and enjoying reading – is directly linked to children’s success at school and their best chance to unlock opportunities for the future.
This may be sharing a book, reading aloud or listening to a story.
We encourage parents to read to their children, and with their children, for a few minutes every day (bite-sized texts can be more appealing than struggling with a longer text if your child is reluctant). Listening to stories is a great way to nurture a love of books and helps a child access interesting content above their reading level.
Books and poems with rhymes and repeated words and phrases help fluency and confidence. Ask questions to keep them interested and read favourites again and again!
Stuck for a book? Click on the links below for some brilliant book ideas for your child.
Speaking and Listening
Pupils are taught to adapt their speech to a widening range of circumstances and demands; listen, understand and respond appropriately to others; and express their ideas clearly.