At Wakefield Methodist Junior, Infant and Nursery School, English is a fundamental and integral part of the school curriculum and is taught both as a discreet subject and across the wider curriculum. In studying English, we want pupils to develop skills in speaking, listening, spelling, reading and writing that will enable them to express themselves creatively and imaginatively and to communicate with others effectively and independently. We want pupils to learn to become enthusiastic and critical readers of stories, poetry and drama, as well as non-fiction and media texts. Through the study of English, pupils should begin to understand how language works, looking at its patterns, structures and origins. Using this knowledge, pupils will learn to choose and adapt what they say and write in different situations.
We believe that children need to develop a secure knowledge- base in English, which follows a clear pathway of progression as they advance through the primary curriculum. We believe that a secure basis in English skills is crucial to a high-quality education and will give our children the tools they need to participate fully as a member of society.
These aims are embedded across our English lessons and the wider curriculum. We have a rigorous and well organised English curriculum and framework, that provides many purposeful opportunities for reading, writing and discussion. In each year group we use a wide variety of quality texts and resources to motivate and inspire our children. Teachers also ensure that cross curricular links with concurrent topic work are woven into the programme of study.
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.
We use Little Wandle to deliver phonic teaching throughout early years, Year 1 and 2.
We use Collins Big Cat and Oxford Reading Tree as our reading schemes. Our reading schemes are designed to match the progressive teaching of phonics. The children are sent home with a decodable book appropriate to their reading level and the current phase of phonics which they learning in school.
The impact on our children is clear: progress, sustained learning and transferrable skills. With the implementation of the writing journey being well established and taught thoroughly in both key stages, children are becoming more confident writers and by the time they are in upper Key Stage 2, most genres of writing are familiar to them and the teaching can focus on creativity, writing styles, sustained writing and manipulation of grammar and punctuation skills.
Half termly assessment shows that most children at Wakefield Methodist School are achieving in English at age-related expectations. Each year we have children achieving at a greater depth in reading and writing at the end of KS1 and are working hard to emulate that at the end of KS2. As all aspects of English are an integral part of the curriculum, cross curricular writing standards have also improved and skills taught in the English lesson are transferred into other subjects; this shows consolidation of skills and a deeper understanding of how and when to use specific grammar, punctuation and grammar objectives. We hope that as children move on from our school to further their education and learning, that their creativity, passion for English and high aspirations travel with them and continue to grow and develop as they do.