English Curriculum Overview
At Thornton Primary School, we understand that writing is an essential part of the curriculum; we’re ambitious about what all children can achieve, and we strive to create exciting and stimulating writing opportunities for all children. We use peers, other classes and the local community as an audience. We aim to ensure that all children leave our school with a passion for writing and a high level of English knowledge and skills that they can apply in a variety of subjects and situations.
We support our SEND children through pre-teaching subject specific vocabulary and scaffolding work where appropriate. There are always opportunities for talk and discussion to generate ideas and support the children before they write.
Lancashire Unit Summaries
Writing, throughout school, is linked to the Lancashire Unit Summaries. Our writing curriculum is carefully planned to ensure that it maps out a progression of knowledge and skills linked to National Curriculum guidelines. A range of genres, increasing in breadth in Key Stage Two, are taught in all year groups. These include both fiction and non-fiction text types.
We teach writing in two specific phases; reading and writing
Creating interest and reading, responding and analysing.
It is vital to create a level of excitement when learning about a new genre so that all children are fully engaged in what they are going to learn about. Children always study high quality texts so they can learn to understand the context, audience and purpose of writing and identify features within a range of genres. This enables children to then achieve the desired effect on the reader. A high importance is placed on learning and understanding new vocabulary throughout both the reading and writing phase.
Gathering content and planning.
New content is explored and created to provide children with the tools and ideas to produce high quality writing. A range of strategies are used to allow children to rehearse the new content and then to plan for writing.
Editing, improving and presenting.
Emphasis is placed on modelled writing. The teacher models high quality writing in the genre style so that children can clearly understand their expectations. After writing independently, the children are provided opportunities to edit their work, acting also in response to teacher feedback. This editing process is modelled and supported with a range of resources. A final piece of writing is then produced so that the children have the chance to apply the knowledge and skills they have been taught.
Writing genres are also revisited through cross curricular work to allow children to fully embed the knowledge and skills they have learnt.
Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling
Grammar and punctuation plays a key part in learning to write. At the beginning of each English lesson, the children are taught specific grammar and punctuation knowledge and skills. They then have the opportunity to apply what they have learnt within their own writing.
Using the No-Nonsense Spelling Programme, spelling rules are taught in conjunction with statutory spelling lists relevant to each year group. In class, children are given the knowledge to apply spelling rules, come up with ways to remember more difficult words and use a range of strategies to consolidate their learning. In addition to this, children are taught ‘tricky words’ in Key Stage 1 and then common exception words in Key Stage 2.
Handwriting is taught throughout school and high standards are promoted, modelled and reinforced in all written work. This begins in Early Years where children are taught the correct letter formation using a joined, cursive script.