English is one of the core subjects of The National Curriculum. At Nutley CE Primary, we promote high standards of language and literacy across all curriculum areas. We aim to teach children to speak, read and write fluently so they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others in a variety of different ways. We encourage children to learn more about others and the world around them by developing their speaking, listening reading and writing skills. We place a strong emphasis on the importance of reading, as a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Reading enables pupils both to acquire knowledge, and to build on what they already know. Above all, we seek to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment. As writers we aim for all children to be confident writers, using writing as a skill for life.
Phonics is taught at Nutley CE Primary using the Government Accredited phonics scheme - Twinkl Phonics. The children begin learning single sounds when they start in Reception. During their Reception year they finish learning their single sounds as well as learning ‘digraphs’ and ‘trigraphs’. They also learn ‘tricky’ words from the Reception Common Exception Word List and begin learning the names of the letters of the alphabet. In Year 1 and 2, the children revise all single letters sounds, digraphs and trigraphs, as well as learning alternative spellings for these. They also learn the Common Exception Words for their year group. Throughout their phonics experience, children are taught to blend sounds together to read words and segmenting sounds to write words. The Twinkl Phonics programme encompasses a wide range of resources for teachers to use as a whole class, in groups or for interventions. These are used alongside other resources to support the teaching of Phonics in KS1 and KS2.
Reading is integrated throughout the curriculum at Nutley. Reading is taught throughout the school using a combination of Common Exception Word reading skills, taught progressively. VIPERS skills (Vocabulary, Inference,
Prediction, Explanation, Retrieval and Summary/Sequence) are used to develop language comprehension. Reading is used throughout the curriculum to engage learning and develop confidence to read across all subjects. All children have access to a variety of high-quality Fiction and Non-fiction texts through class reading areas, specific texts for a class Learning Focus and the Library. Children are encouraged to read regularly at home to support fluency and enjoyment of reading.
Every class enjoys rich texts which are changed termly to support reading and writing in conjunction with a term’s Learning Focus and Learning Concepts. These rich texts are planned within the class Long-Term Planning to ensure variety and progression through the school. Children will explore a range of text types, including fiction, poetry and non-fiction, as well as authors from different cultures and different genres,
In order to write, children must have something to write about or a purpose to write for. This is why at Nutley CE Primary, writing is very much linked to the topic and other curriculum areas and inspired by rich texts. Teachers use talk and discussion, role play and drama as part of the writing process. All pupils write for a purpose and regularly write extended pieces of writing in order to build pace and stamina for writing.
As part of writing the children use No-Nonsense Spelling from KS1 onwards to support spelling strategies within all writing. From Year 1 to Year 6 children are all given Common Exception Words to learn at their own pace, which are taught throughout the year in discreet handwriting and spelling lessons, within English lessons, as well as at home.
At Nutley we have clear expectations of letter formation and presentation. Children will practise handwriting to enable them to develop a cursive style that is both legible and neat. Writing in a cursive style begins in our Year 1 class.
At Nutley all pupils of all abilities will be able to make valuable contributions within English lessons. All children's written work is celebrated - by reading to the class – using as an example of excellent writing, shown to other classes in the school to inspire or in our Celebration Assembly, displayed or made into books or on our school website for a wider audience to share. Children will leave our school being confident listeners and speakers. They will have a life long love of reading and will be able to write with fluency for a variety of purposes, communicating ideas in a purposeful and enjoyable way.