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Powell's School Church of England (VA) Primary School

English

 

English at Powells

At Powell’s we aim to provide an English curriculum which allows all children to express their creativity, foster a love for literature and embed the necessary skills and knowledge within the key learning areas of language and communication including: reading, writing, listening, speaking and phonics. Our ‘book rich’ curriculum ensures the national curriculum is delivered in an engaging and exciting way, with books and a love of reading at its heart.

 

Aims

The overarching aim for English in our school is to ensure that high standards of language and literacy are promoted by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment.

 

The National Curriculum for English aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • 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
  • are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.

 

Teaching and Learning

English is taught daily across the school for at least one hour. Spelling, reading and handwriting are all taught within, and in addition to daily English lessons. Throughout Early Years and KS1, phonics is taught daily as a discrete session lasting between 20 and 30 minutes. Discrete teaching of spellings and rules continues in KS2. For some children phonic intervention lessons may continue into KS2.

 

Reading

 

In line with the National Curriculum, reading is a high priority for us at Powell’s. Not only do we want to ensure our children learn the skills required to become proficient readers, we want to encourage them to develop a love of reading. Every class across the school has an inviting book area which promotes reading engagement and supports our pupils’ in accessing books that are of interest to them, and appropriate for them as readers. As well as classrooms promoting a love of reading through engaging book corners, novel studies are part of English lessons to help develop a deep understanding and love of these carefully chosen texts. The books chosen are high quality texts which stimulate excellent writing and discussion opportunities.


 

 

 

         

 

Letters and Sounds

Phase

Tricky Words

Book Band

Word Boxes

Phase 1

 

 

Lilac

(no words)

 

 

Phase 2

Set 1: s, a, t, p

Set 2: i, n, m, d

Set 3: g, o, c, k

Set 4: ck, e, u, r

Set 5: h, b, f, ff, l, ss

I

go

to

no

the

into

Pink

Sets 1 - 5

1 - 32

Phase 3

Set 6: j, v, w, x

Set 7: y, z, zz, qu

Set 8: ch, sh, th, ng

Set 9: ai, ee, igh, oa, oo

Set 10: ar, or, ur, ow, oi

Set 11: ear, air, ure, er

he       me

we      be

she     was

you    they

all      are

my     her

Red

Sets 6 - 11

33 - 82

Yellow

Consolidation of Phases 2 & 3

Phase 4

Adjacent consonants, e.g. tr - trap, str - string and lk - milk

some    come

said       so

do         like

have     were

one       out

there    little

when    what

Blue

83 - 122

Green

 

Phase 5

Complex code - alternative  pronunciations for graphemes.

Year 1 Common exception words

Orange

123 - 160

Turquoise

 

Phase 6

Basic spelling rules. Suffixes introduced (s, es, ing, ed, er, est, y, en, ful, ly, ment, ness, en), plus basic grammar strategies.

Year 2 Common exception words

Accelerated Reader

 

 

 

Once a child has completed Phase 5 / Turquoise Book Band level they should then be reading more fluently i.e. reading by sight more and less reliant on their phonic skills. The next step is to focus more on further developing their individual comprehension skills. Following Turquoise level, the children will then move on to following the Accelerated Reader program.

Accelerated Reader

Accelerated Reader is an online based program that helps us to monitor and manage children’s independent reading practice. At the start of every new term, the children take a Star Test which determines their reading level and gives them an individual reading level (ZPD range). Each child then selects books at their own level, reads them at their own pace and then takes a short online comprehension ‘quiz’ on what they have read. Teachers use the feedback and data from the children’s quiz results together with their own assessments made when reading with the child to support them in guiding pupils, setting goals and directing ongoing reading practice.

We encourage all children to foster a love of reading here at school and expect them to be also reading daily at home. Developing a love for reading is incredibly important as in the words of Dr Seuss ‘The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you will learn, the more places you will go!’

 

Recommended book lists by year group

(click links to webpage)

Reception

Year 1

Year 2

Year 3

Year 4

Year 5

Year 6

 

 

Reading provision information

(click links to webpage)

Early Years Reading Journey

Year 1 Reading Provision Map

Year 2 Reading Provision Map

KS2 Reading Provision Map

Whole School Reading Progression Map 2021/22

Whole School Writing Progression Map 2021/22

  

Writing

Our English lessons ensure that all children are exposed to a wide range of text types. These have been grouped in genres relating to their purpose:

Early Years and Key Stage 1

Writing to entertain

Writing to inform

Story

Description

Poetry

 

Signs/labels/captions

Recount

Letter

Instruction

 

Years 3 and 4

Writing to entertain

Writing to inform

Writing to persuade

Story

Description

Poetry

Narrative

Play scripts

Explanation

Recount

Biography

Newspaper

Reports

Advert

Letter

Poster

 

 

Years 5 and 6

Writing to entertain

Writing to inform

Writing to persuade

Writing to discuss

Story

Description

Poetry

Narrative

Play scripts

Reports

Biography

Newspaper

Reports

Advertising

Speech

Campaign

Argument

Newspaper

 

At the heart of all of our writing lessons is a high-quality text. This carefully chosen text is used as a model for the children to learn from. Each unit starts by studying the model text for the children to see the ‘ingredients’ of what is needed to produce this type of text. These model texts help to drive the children’s own writing; they are of the highest quality and therefore provide children with ambitious examples.

 

Writing is taught and learnt through meaningful and effective contexts using a range of approaches. These include:

  • Modelled and shared writing
  • Guided writing
  • Independent writing
  • Talking partners
  • Sharing and reflecting on their writing
  • Editing stations
  • Talk for writing
  • Peer and self-assessment against given success criteria
  • Opportunities of oral rehearsal of sentences and text types
  • Vocabulary, punctuation and grammar activities taught discretely and as part of writing units

 

Grammar, spelling and punctuation

In order to prepare our children for the end of KS2 Spelling, Grammar and Punctuation test (SPAG), grammar, spelling and punctuation are taught within English lessons through language and sentence games and discrete sessions.

Spelling

We want all of our children to become confident when spelling unknown words.

Within the Foundation Stage and KS1, children learn to segment words and identify the sounds during their daily phonics sessions. In Year 2, children continue to build on their phonics knowledge and are introduced to some of the spelling rules such as adding suffixes enabling them to spell increasingly more complex words.

Once children move into Key Stage 2, they are taught to apply their prior phonics knowledge as ‘codes’ for understanding and spelling unknown words as well as using their plural, prefix and suffix knowledge. This phonics ‘code’ is the relationship between the sounds of speech and their spelling alternatives (the graphemes). All KS2 classes have daily spelling sessions, focusing on using their phonics knowledge to spell increasingly challenging words. To work out ‘the code’, they are taught to start from a whole spoken word pronounced slowly. Next, they orally segment the word into its sounds, highlighting focus sounds within words before mapping those onto the graphemes in the written word.

At Powell’s we hope the by the time our children leave us they are equipped with a number of strategies in order to use ‘codes’ to understand and spell unknown words.

Throughout all of the children’s spelling work they will build up a bank of words including the spelling lists from the national curriculum:

Year 1 Common Exception Words

the

a

do

to

today

of

said

says

are

were

was

is

his

has

I

you

your

they

be

he

me

she

we

no

go

so

by

my

here

there

where

love

come

some

one

once

ask

friend

school

put

push

pull

full

house

our

 

Year 2 Common Exception Words

door

floor

poor

because

find

kind

mind

behind

child

children

wild

climb

most

only

every

everybody

even

great

break

steak

pretty

beautiful

after

fast

last

past

father

class

grass

pass

plant

bath

path

hour

move

prove

improve

sure

sugar

eye

could

should

would

who

whole

any

many

clothes

busy

people

water

again

half

money

Mr

Mrs

parents

Christmas

 

 

 

 

Year 3 & 4 word list

Year 5 & 6 word list

EY's 2020 Read, Write info

Early Years Writing Journey Presentation

Accelerated Reader

English - Grammar Policy

 

Books are a constant feature of the children’s daily lives at Powell’s. Texts are used to enhance and support all subjects and daily reading time takes place in all year groups. In addition to this, every class has a dedicated daily time for their ‘Class Reader’, a time where the children sit and listen to the adult reading the current class book. This is a treasured and very enjoyable time where children enjoy a wonderful book and at the same time are exposed to high quality vocabulary and hear the adult modelling fluent reading skills.

In KS1, the teaching of phonics continues daily. As their reading progresses, our KS1 pupils may also begin reading through the Accelerated Reader scheme. Children engage in group reading sessions where they will share a text and discuss what has been read whilst at the same time have additional teaching and reinforcement of phonics and tricky words. When ready the children will have whole class reading sessions, with a focus on comprehension skills. As reading is so important for us at Powell’s, children are also heard reading on a one to one with an adult on a regular basis.Our children’s reading journeys start at the beginning of Reception where they are taught to read during daily phonics sessions. At Powell’s we follow the Dfe Letters and Sounds scheme of progression where the children learn the initial sounds and how to segment and blend these. Phonics is taught in a progressive and systematic way to ensure that children learn the phonics knowledge needed to quickly become readers. The children also enjoy story times where stories, poems and rhymes are being read to them daily.

As the children move into KS2, taught reading sessions continue weekly. These may be whole class sessions or small groups. Across the year, our children experience a great range of vocabulary rich texts. We ensure that the texts explored are chosen carefully so that the children are introduced to a number of different authors and genres. Through our book studies, children experience hearing high quality texts read to them and are introduced to a greater range of vocabulary.

 

Book Levels and Word Boxes

From the first days of starting Powell’s children are shown the importance of books and how they are highly valued. Even before the children can decode they have a Lilac book to take home and enjoy. These Lilac books are wordless but are perfect for children to learn important reading skills as turning the pages in the correct direction.

Early reading at Powell’s is closely linked to each child’s individual phonics ability and progression. Our reading resources are closely matched to the Letters and Sounds Phases (see table below).

Once children are able to read the individual sounds in Phase 2, Set 1 they will be given a Word Box. These boxes contain sets of individual words featuring the focus sounds. The children begin to learn to blend short words that contain 2 or 3 letters. The children will then work their way through the word box levels as their phonic knowledge progresses.

When the children are able to read individual words they then start to take home reading books. Reading books at Powell’s are again matched to the Phases in Letters and Sounds (again see table below) and are fully decodable. The very early phonic books, Pink and Red, are fine graded into phonic sets 1 to 11; this is to help ensure children have the opportunity to apply their phonic skills for reading as soon as possible, even if they only know a limited amount of sounds. The children will progress their way through the bands until they have completed the Turquoise level. They do not need to read every book in each band; the level they should be on is based on: their phonic knowledge, their accuracy when decoding and also their ability to answer comprehension questions about what they have read. The children should be around 95% accurate on the reading books they take home; the purpose of reading these books is to consolidate what has been taught at school and to be enjoyable so will not be challenging. For our early readers we encourage the children to read the same book 3 times; 1 for decoding / phonics, 2 to build fluency and sight recognition and 3 for comprehension. The children will read books from the next level up in their group reading sessions with their teacher; in these sessions the teachers can then monitor