English provides the communication skills fundamental to functioning effectively on a personal, social, educational and professional basis. In recognition of this, English provides the mainstay of the school curriculum at Oxon CE Primary School.
Our commitment to the teaching of English skills throughout the school reflects our belief that all children should have the tools necessary to progress their own learning at school across a range of subject areas and beyond.
Our aim is for all pupils to become confident, fluent readers who can write imaginatively using grammatically correct English, correct spelling and a neat, fluent handwriting style. They are encouraged to be confident and competent in spoken language and listening skills.
The English curriculum has three distinct strands.
- Spoken Language
Spoken language is developed in each year group using a range of activities. Cross-curricular work is often a focus for quality spoken language, which in turn supports the development of reading and writing.
Phonics work is based on a validated systematic synthetic phonics (SSP) programme called ‘Twinkl Phonics’. It is used daily from the Early Years Foundation Stage, throughout key stage 1 and into lower key stage 2 (if appropriate) in a structured way. It provides an understanding of phonics and its use in reading and writing. Quality teaching of phonics is seen as essential, with the children being carefully monitored to ensure they are progressing appropriately.
Reading is central to English work in school, with the aim for all children being able to read fluently and with confidence, in any subject by the time they leave Oxon school. Once teachers are confident in a child's ability to decode, they are provided with opportunities to read widely and often from carefully selected, quality, age-appropriate texts. Individual reading materials are carefully graded by reading levels known as ‘Book Bands’. Books are selected from a number of different commercial sources. ‘Real’ books are included in the ‘Book Bands’. Across the school, the children are encouraged to develop the habit of reading widely and often both for pleasure and information. Children are encouraged to develop a 'love' of reading. Each classroom has well-stocked reading areas; year group age-appropriate texts for adults to share with the children; topic collection class library books to support cross-curricular work; and access to books to support specific children (for example dyslexic). Additional resources such as educational newspapers and magazines are also included in the KS2 classrooms. Whole school and year group specific reading experiences to develop a ‘love’ of reading and encourage the children to read a wide variety of text for enjoyment and information include assemblies promoting reading; regular author visits; World Book Day activities; participation in the ‘STFC Reading the Game’ programme and ‘Shrewsbury Bookfest events’.
The writing skills of transcription (spelling and handwriting) and composition (articulating ideas and structuring them in speech and writing) are developed through a range of carefully selected activities. The children are encouraged to draft, reflect upon and improve their written work following appropriate feedback.