Crawford's CEVC Primary School

Together we care, inspire and achieve

English


The ability to read, write and communicate is crucial to opening doors of opportunity in the future lives of our children at Crawford’s CEVC Primary School. Children are taught these skills, in line with National Curriculum expectations, daily as part of our cross curricular topics. Opportunities are given throughout the year to celebrate learning within these areas.

Reading:

The children have access to an ever widening range of books to support their learning through our new library resource which we have developed over the past two years following funding from a grant from the Foyle Foundation. Alongside our library, the children also have access to a range of ICT resources to support teaching and learning across the school.

As far as the teaching of reading is concerned, we use a range of reading scheme books as a base which are organised into coloured bands so that all children can easily identify the section of books from which they are to choose a reading book.  Once children have worked their way through a range of reading scheme books, they move onto short chapter books before accessing books from the school library. We actively encourage parents to read at home with their children, and also to listen to them read from their school book.

As well as individual reading, the children read in small groups, providing them with opportunities to read and discuss a wider selection of literature, including poetry and plays.

Hearing stories and poems read aloud is an important part of our school curriculum as it allows children to be able to develop a rich vocabulary as well as giving them the opportunity to be able to discuss the things they hear. The children are read to regularly in all classes across the school.

Writing:

As far as possible, writing is taught in a cross curricular manner to fit in with learning across the curriculum so that children are able to make links between subjects and so that there is a reason and purpose for their writing. Specific skills are taught discretely when required but at all other times, links are made. A variety of different genres are studied during the year, including a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry units and these can be found on our long term plan. Links are made with national curriculum grammar expectations so that children can use their grammar skills when writing within appropriate contexts.

Phonics:

We use Jolly Phonics and “Letters and Sounds” to support our teaching of phonics. Phonic groups are differentiated according to the needs of the children and are organised in a structured and systematic way. Once children are proficient at using phonics as a tool for decoding unfamiliar words and for spelling phonetically decodable words, we move on to daily spelling practice based on the requirements of the National Curriculum. 

In 2014, 83% of children met the expected standard for phonics; in 2015, 71% of children met the standard and in 2016, 75% of children met the standard.

As a school, we operate the deep sea spellers scheme which involves children learning a variety of differentiated spelling lists linked to the national curriculum throughout the year. Throughout their time in school, we encourage children to practice their phonics and spelling at home through regular reading and practicing of given word lists / activities. We value the support of parents and believe that developing children’s learning in all areas of the curriculum works best when there is a partnership between home and school.

Phonics and spelling teaching across the school is organised as follows:

Early Years / Year 1 / Year 2: Daily phonics (spelling for year 2) following Jolly Phonics and Letters and Sounds (phonic / spellings homework to reinforce skills taught)

Year 3 / 4: Daily phonics / spelling work based on National Curriculum expectations (spellings to learn at home linked to National Curriculum expectations)

Year 5 / 6: Regular spelling inputs based on requirements of the new National Curriculum (weekly spelling lists linked to new spelling patterns / rules that have been taught)