Each child receives quality reading lessons each week to develop specific reading skills, including fluency and confidence when reading aloud. This is delivered through our Book Talk Jane Considine’s Reading Rainbow.
HOW DO WE MAKE WRITING SIMPLE FOR CHILDREN TO LEARN?
We teach handwriting, spelling and composition separately, gradually bringing each skill together step-by-step.
We teach children to form letters with the correct pencil grip and in the correct sitting position from the very beginning. They practise handwriting every day so they learn to write quickly and easily.
Once children can write simple words, we teach them to ‘hold’ a sentence in their heads and then write it with correct spelling and punctuation.
Very soon children are able to write down their own ideas. We try out different sentences together, drawing on new vocabulary and phrases from the storybook they’ve just read. They practise saying their sentences out loud first so they don’t forget their ideas while they’re writing. They also learn to proofread their own writing using ready-made sentences containing common grammar, punctuation and spelling errors.
HOW CAN YOU HELP AT HOME?
First of all, come to our meetings. We hold these to give parents and carers practical advice about how you can help.
We appreciate you’re busy but here are two things that will make the biggest difference to your child’s progress.
1. Read a bedtime story to your child.
Your child will bring home lovely library books from school. Read bedtime stories to your child – don’t ask them to read the story themselves as this is beyond their current reading stage. There is some really good advice about how to make bedtime storytime fun on www.ruthmiskin.com/parents
2. Listen to your child read the storybook we send home.
Your child will bring home a book they have just finished reading in their group. They will be able to read this book confidently because they have already read it two or three times. Please do not say “This book is too easy!” Praise your child for how well they read it – celebrate what a great reader they are. They’ll sometimes bring home previous stories they have read too. Re-reading stories develops their fluency on every reading. There’s more good advice on how to listen to your child read on www.ruthmiskin.com/parents
THE WRITING PROCESS
It is expected that children will be given as many opportunities as possible to use and apply their writing skills across all text types and across the whole curriculum. Teachers plan for this accordingly using The Stour Federation Partnership’s Writing Process.
Vocabulary underpins our curriculum and it is at the heart of every subject we teach. Although we recognise that reading is invaluable for learning new language, we cannot assume that the more words you read, the more words you know. In The Stour Federation Partnership, we teach vocabulary explicitly and then revisit and revise words learned. This way, the children know the words in depth – meaning that they can use them in a variety of contexts, in writing, speaking and reading.
Every year, we subscribe to No More Marking, an online Comparative Judgement system, which allows our staff to collaborate with thousands of other schools in judging writing from years 1-6. By uploading and assessing our children’s writing in six national judging windows, we are able to get whole-school and nationally benchmarked data, allowing us to save time, support progression and intervention planning and tailor feedback. With all our teachers and teaching assistants knowing what good quality writing looks like across the school, we have high expectations and a shared understanding of next steps.Reading Curriculum Progression Map