CURRICULUM – ENGLISH
“One child, one teacher, one pen, and one book can change the world.” Malala Yousafzai
English has a pre-eminent place in education and in society. A high-quality education in English will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others, and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. Through reading in particular pupils have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Literature, especially, plays a key role in such development. Reading also enables pupils both to acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know. All the skills of language are essential to participating fully as a member of society; pupils who do not learn to speak, read and write fluently and confidently are effectively disenfranchised. (National Curriculum 2014)
You can find out more in our 3 Is; Intent, Implementation and Impact.
Our Outline Aims
Our aim for our pupils, as they journey through our English curriculum is to enable them to develop to become confident and competent communicators who speak, read and write fluently and are able to effectively communicate their ideas to others in a variety of setting and to different stakeholders. These English skills are the thread that flows and links through the entire school curriculum.
Our Literacy Teaching and Learning Philosophy
We are guided by the National Curriculum for English (2014) and the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum:
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
The Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage requires that English and Literacy involves:
- providing children with opportunities to for adults to talk about the world around them and the books (stories and non-fiction) they read with them, and enjoy rhymes, poems and songs together.
- skilled word reading through explicitly taught speedy working out of the pronunciation of unfamiliar printed words (decoding) and the speedy recognition of familiar printed words. Writing involves transcription (spelling and handwriting) and composition (articulating ideas and structuring them in speech, before writing).
The early learning goals for English are:
- Demonstrate understanding of what has been read to them by retelling stories and narratives using their own words and recently introduced vocabulary
- Anticipate – where appropriate – key events in stories
- Use and understand recently introduced vocabulary during discussions about stories, non-fiction, rhymes and poems and during role-play.
- Say a sound for each letter in the alphabet and at least 10 digraphs
- Read words consistent with their phonic knowledge by sound-blending
- Read aloud simple sentences and books that are consistent with their phonic knowledge, including some common exception words
- Write recognisable letters, most of which are correctly formed
- Spell words by identifying sounds in them and representing the sounds with a letter or letters
- Write simple phrases and sentences that can be read by others
The aim of the Garden Fields English curriculum is to provide our children with the skills that they need to become active and effective global citizens. Stories, books and texts ignite the imagination and stimulate thinking, growing hearts by opening up a world of discovery and growing minds through inspiring a love of learning: these will equip them with the tools through which they can aspire to achieve their ambitions. We want our children to leave primary school excited to embark on the next stage of their learning journey.
Our children will become skilful communicators, able to express their ideas, understanding and opinions with articulacy, both verbally and within their writing, and to absorb written and verbal information with confidence.
Our Values thread through the texts our children encounter both in our curriculum and school libraries. Books break down boundaries between peoples, cultures, and races enabling gateways into lives which would otherwise remain unexplored. Respect, empathy and kindness develop through this immersion: narrowing divides and broadening horizons.
At Garden Fields, we use the highly successful Read Write Inc. Phonics programme to teach our children the early skills of reading. Our aim is that they become proficient, fluent and accurate readers. A love of reading is at the heart of what we aspire to do and, from the start of Reception, the curriculum is designed to support this across all subject areas. Similarly, within their writing, children will understand specific purposes for writing and develop their skills within the areas of composition, vocabulary, grammar, punctuation and spelling. From January 2024, we will be teaching these through ‘The Write Stuff’, a structured and progressive writing programme.
We are guided by the National Curriculum for English (2014) and the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum.
The early acquisition of reading skills is crucial and in EYFS and in KS1 the teaching of phonics, through the Read, Write Inc. Programme, is at the core: children engage in daily phonic lessons to ensure that they have the tools to develop their early reading and writing skills.
As they move through the school, we build on these early foundations; our learners participate in daily English lessons, where key skills are taught and developed. They also engage in handwriting, spelling, grammar and guided reading sessions that build on their skills through a spiralling curriculum, which is designed so that content is revisited over time. This is in line with the National Curriculum outcomes and following year group expectations, further details of which are outlined in the documents below:
As children move through the school, the progress that they make in reading, writing and oracy is evident, not just within their English lessons, but also across the wider curriculum: in their choice of reading material, in their exercise books, through their contribution to discussions, in their presentation skills and in their ability to absorb information.
The Learning Journey below illustrates the English curriculum for WRITING for children from EYFS to Year 6. Each term there is a focus on a main topic supported by knowledge organiser topics.
The Learning Journey below illustrates the English curriculum for READING for children from EYFS to Year 6. Each term there is a focus on a main topic supported by knowledge organiser topics.