“For everyone, everywhere, literacy is, along with education in general, a basic human right.... Literacy is, finally, the road to human progress and the means through which every man, woman and child can realize his or her full potential.”
By the age of 11, we aim to ensure that all children at White House Farm Primary School:
- read easily, fluently and with good understanding.
- develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information.
- acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language.
- appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage.
- write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences
- use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas and reflect on the effectiveness of the choices they have made.
- are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.
Speaking, Listening and Drama
We help children to develop confidence and articulacy in their speaking, listening and drama by:
- Ensuring that children should have opportunities to take part in purposeful and relevant discussions, including formal debates with cross-curricular themes
- Supporting children in the learning of age-appropriate poetry by heart for pleasure and performance.
- Providing opportunities for children to develop skills in public speaking.
- Ensuring that children can rehearse, perform, and critically respond to dramatic works that they have created.
Phonics and Reading
Please see the school’s specific Phonics and Early Reading Policy
Spelling, Grammar and Handwriting
At White House Farm Primary School, we firmly believe that good spelling is an essential skill that allows the children to communicate their understanding in all curriculum subjects. In order that pupils develop into effective and confident writers, they need to develop and use a range of effective spelling strategies. By providing children with a range of strategies, we equip them with the independence to attempt spellings before asking for adult help. We particularly want our children to develop a love of language and the confidence to spell more challenging and ambitious words. By giving them the opportunity to develop a rich and exciting vocabulary, we are enabling them to become effective communicators.
To ensure that all children reach their potential in spelling and grammar we will:
- Provide regular spelling sessions linked to the age-specific spelling programme set out in the National Curriculum 2014 using ‘No Nonsense Spelling’ as our spelling programme to support teachers with weekly spelling lessons;
- Ensure that our learning environment is rich with language;
- Provide weekly spelling homework which will reinforce class teaching;
- Provide grammar-focused teaching objectives within our medium and long-term planning as recommended by the subject leader and by the 2014 National Curriculum; these objectives will be broken down into half-termly skills to be covered through the Talk 4 Write Toolkit. As a result of our Cold Writing Task, class teachers will also identify and teach particular SPaG objectives to ensure progression is made by the time the children complete their Hot Writing Task.
- Using Nelson Handwriting, teachers will develop children’s ability to write in a legible, style at an appropriate pace and in line with the National Curriculum 2014, through regular practice and by promoting pride in presentation.
- Use government spelling words in the T4W model texts
- Use formative and summative assessment of children’s spelling termly in Years 1-6 and use this to adjust interventions.
Our approach to writing is based on ‘Talk 4 Writing’, which is an approach that supports children to explore, through talk, the thinking and creative processes involved in being a writer. It is embedded at every phase of the teaching sequence, which is structured to include teacher talk, supported pupil talk and independent pupil talk. We believe that ‘Talk 4 Writing’ is an approach that goes beyond the development of children’s general speaking and listening skills – it allows children to explore the processes involved in being a writer,and extends oral rehearsal so that it becomes a draft for their written pieces. The approach supports the children to move from talk into writing. We use this approach across the curriculum, as well as in English lessons.
To ensure that all children reach their potential in writing we will:
- Ensure that writing has a clear purpose and audience and where possible has cross-curricular links.
- Encourage the love of writing for its own sake.
- Provide children with first-hand experiences to inspire imaginative writing.
- Provide children with guidance and support to improve; to give children an understanding of their writing ‘level’ and support them in developing realistic, personal targets.
- Immerse children in a vocabulary-rich culture where children are not afraid to experiment with new and exciting language.
- Provide children (identified through assessment) with a range of appropriate interventions to support them in overcoming barriers to progress.
- Assessment will be undertaken in line with the school’s marking and feedback policy.
- Children will be assessed in line with age related expectations set out in the assessment documents of the 2014 National Curriculum.
- Regular structured assessments will be undertaken to monitor progress throughout the school and to enable the setting of relevant, realistic personal targets.