At Twickenham Primary School, we believe that English underpins our school curriculum by developing the children’s ability to speak, listen and communicate, to think, explore and organise. Through the English curriculum, we support children to develop the skills and knowledge that will enable them to communicate effectively and creatively through spoken and written language and equip them with the skills to become lifelong learners. We want children to enjoy and appreciate literature and its rich variety.
The English curriculum at Twickenham Primary School is delivered using the National Curriculum English Document (2014). The Early Learning Goals are followed to ensure continuity and progression from the Early Years Foundation stage through to the National Curriculum. Teachers group children according to their abilities and work is differentiated accordingly using effective methods such as support, outcome and task. Where appropriate, Literacy units link to creative curriculum themes to promote cross curricular learning.
Reading is a vital part of the English curriculum in our school. Reading books are organised on a book banding basis ensuring the children read books appropriate to their level. Online home reading books are accessible via Oxford Owl in which the children are set specific pages/chapters to read at home with a family member weekly. Oxford Owl offers a wide range of online picture books/comics and novels to cater for a range of ages and abilities.
Shared reading takes place within Literacy lessons to provide enriching experiences through more challenging texts. In Years 1 – 6 we provide children with a weekly comprehension lesson whereby challenging vocabulary is included in a range of text genre’s and discussed in order to expand their understanding of a wide range of words. Children are also given the opportunity to apply their new vocabulary in their writing.
As part of the English curriculum each child takes part in guided reading sessions. These sessions are led by the class teacher/teaching assistant and allow the children to develop their reading and comprehension skills. Specific reading skills are individually chosen to enable children to improve and progress in a particular area needed.
In EYFS our children are given opportunities to develop and improve their pencil control and fine gross motor skills through mark making. The delivery of this is through well- planned adult led activities to introduce new skills and learning and through purposeful, organised independent opportunities where adults observe and intervene accordingly to support.
During the early stages of Key Stage One children begin to develop their ability to write simple sentences, improve their letter formation in their handwriting and incorporate different punctuation. Later on in Key Stage One our children begin to plan out their writing, explore a variety of punctuation and word classes and apply these as well as spelling rules they have learnt into their writing.
During Key Stage Two children use the Hot and Cold Writing cycle in order to produce high quality pieces of work on a weekly/fortnightly cycle. This incorporates sharing specific genre related examples of writing as a class and enabling children to develop key areas of grammar, spelling and composition in order to write a similar piece of writing independently. Children are able to progress onto learning how to draft and edit their own work to make improvements and up-level their writing. They are able to write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences.
Speaking and listening
Our pupils are taught to:
- listen and respond appropriately to adults and their peers;
- ask relevant questions to extend their understanding and knowledge;
- use relevant strategies to build their vocabulary;
- articulate and justify answers, arguments and opinions;
- give well-structured descriptions, explanations and narratives for different purposes, including for expressing feelings;
- maintain attention and participate actively in collaborative conversations, staying on topic and initiating and responding to comments;
- use spoken language to develop understanding through speculating, hypothesising, imagining and exploring ideas;
- speak audibly and fluently with an increasing command of Standard English;
- participate in discussions, presentations, performances, role play, improvisations and debates;
- gain, maintain and monitor the interest of the listener(s).
Phonics at Twickenham
At Twickenham, we follow the RWI synthetic phonics programme that leads our children from the first stages of reading to the point where they can read confidently and fluently.
Read Write Inc. Phonics is a highly successful literacy programme created by Ruth Miskin and published by Oxford University Press. The training and support from Ruth Miskin Training, rated Outstanding by the Department for Education, ensures the programme has the best chance of success for the children in our school.
The Read Write Inc. programme is carefully matched to the National Curriculum, giving our children the best chance of success in national tests. It also shows teachers, teaching assistants and parents step-by-step guidance of how to teach and support all our children to become fluent readers, confident speakers and willing writers.
Read Write Inc. Phonics teaches the children at Twickenham to become confident and independent readers and writers by weaving decoding, comprehension, writing and spelling together seamlessly. At Twickenham, this programme begins in Nursery and continues throughout EYFS, Key Stage 1 and where necessary into Key Stage 2. Phonics is taught implicitly across the curriculum and explicitly during RWI lessons, RWI intervention sessions and our weekly RWI VIP parent workshops.