Success in any curriculum area depends upon good basic writing skills. It provides children with an important form of self-expression and creativity as well as making available to them the wealth of the written word. Here at Cheddar Grove, the children have daily English lessons teaching them vital skills such as planning their writing, drafting ideas as well as editing and improving what they have written.
In Key Stage One our lessons follow the Talk For Writing approach enabling our children to imitate the key language they need for a particular topic orally before they try reading and analysing it. Through fun activities that help them rehearse the tune of the language they need, followed by shared writing to show them how to craft their writing, our children are helped to write in the same style.
Our lessons in key stage two are planned around the Power of Reading approach. Our teachers use outstanding books to teach a curriculum that is creative, engaging and develops a love for writing. Our lessons in key stage two also encapsulate the teaching of spelling, grammar and punctuation by giving it context.
In both key stages, each writing unit starts with a WOW lesson that introduces our children to the text that they will be covering over the term and sparks their imagination and enthusiasm towards upcoming English lessons.
At Cheddar Grove we aim to guide your child to understand themselves and others better. Literature plays a key role in this development as an individual because it enables them to acquire knowledge, build on what they already know and to participating fully as a member of society. It is our duty as a school to work with you and your child to ensure this journey and goal is achievable, exciting and rewarding.
The pupils move through levelled books during their time in reception to year 6.
Although reading is an exciting journey rather than a race, we do celebrate when pupils make progress in their reading and share this news with you. We use Reading Diaries to communicate regularly between home and school building on the child’s next steps in their reading.
At Cheddar Grove we teach reading in two parts:
Our teaching focuses on developing pupils’ competence in both skills because different kinds of teaching are needed for each.
Skilled word reading involves both the speedy working out of the pronunciation of unfamiliar printed words (decoding) and the speedy recognition of familiar printed words. Underpinning both is the understanding that the letters on the page represent the sounds in spoken words. At Cheddar Grove we begin teaching phonics in Nursery.
Phonics Program with appropriate online resources:
Nursery: phase 1-2
Reception: phase 2-4
Year 1: phase 3-5
Year 2: phase 5-6
This website also details each phase, giving information on the phonic phases and the tricky words in each phase.
We use Letters and Sounds across the school alongside ‘Nessie’ to support Y2-6 pupils with additional needs/dyslexic tendencies in phonics.
We teach ‘tricky’ words in groups. These are the words your child needs to read without sounding out. You will find these in your pupil’s book bag and we will work on these alongside the sounds together.
At Cheddar Grove we develop Comprehension skills through providing each pupil with a weekly experience of high-quality discussion in a small group with the teacher using a range of stories, poems and non-fiction. We encourage them to read widely to develop their knowledge of themselves and the world they live in, to establish an appreciation and love of reading and to gain knowledge across the curriculum. Pupils take part in Guided Reading groups from Year 1-6, where they have the opportunity to develop their comprehension skills. We also offer the pupils ‘Bug Club’ with their own login account accessible at home (now available on IPAD!) and school. This provides text and questions at the pupil’s individual level of reading and is updated regularly by the class teacher.
School code: kh7w
(other login details from your class teacher)
At Cheddar Grove our pupils also have access to First News resources for the pupils to work on non-fiction comprehension whist also finding out about current issues. These are separated into y1-3, y4-6 and beyond. We use these within guided reading sessions and as homework.
First News: http://www.firstnews.co.uk/news
We use ‘Power of Reading’ to teach all of our English lessons. This is a wonderful resource and fosters pupils’ vocabulary because they encounter rich language they would rarely hear or use in everyday speech. Reading the quality texts also feeds pupils’ imagination and opens up a treasure house of wonder and joy.
POWER of READING: https://www.clpe.org.uk/powerofreading
We encourage all pupils to become members of their local library and promote their excellent holiday reading challenges so that your children continue their reading adventure throughout the whole year.
For opening hours: 0117 903 8566
Spelling Punctuation and Grammar
Spelling, punctuation and grammar is an integral part of the writing national curriculum. It allows children to develop skills essential to becoming a fluent writer. At Cheddar Grove we provide children with a range of opportunities to build on their learning.
Spelling is taught from Years 2 to 6 through a creative and progressive program which is delivered as discrete sessions at least 2 times a week. The program, No Nonsense spelling, builds on phonics skills learnt in the Foundation Stage and Year One and teaches children the vast rules around spelling patterns. It also provides children with strategies for learning spellings.
To compliment the program children are also given individualised spellings to learn at home and are tested on these on weekly basis.
As an essential part of writing children are taught to use punctuation from the Foundation Stage. This consistent approach uses characters and icons to encourage children to independently use a range of punctuation. This is then developed further throughout the school, until Year 6 where children have an extensive knowledge of punctuation.
Grammar is taught through discrete sessions every week using the No Nonsense Grammar scheme and then embedded within the English lessons. The No Nonsense Grammar scheme provides a 'sentence toolkit' (see image below) which enables children to understand how to make their writing more effective through using the correct punctuation and grammar.
At Cheddar Grove we relate our teaching to the expectations of the new National Curriculum and embed Grammar learning throughout our English lessons.
Children’s SPaG knowledge and understanding is assessed by teachers at the end of each year using the Sheffield Assessment system. Additionally, it is also tested through end of Key Stage Standardised tests.
Alongside discrete SPaG lessons children are also taught SPaG through their English lessons, interventions may also be in place to support some children. These may be in the form of Nessy, Phonics Groups and SPaG catch up groups.
We use a range of different resources including an interactive learning site, games, songs, and other materials to help children develop a solid understanding of SPaG.