English Curriculum Statement
At Mount Carmel, we aim to deliver a broad and balanced English programme using objectives from the National Curriculum 2014 which determine the skills that are taught in each year group and Key Stage. Our aim is for all of our pupils to become competent readers, speakers, writers and spellers, who can transfer their English skills to other subjects so they are prepared for their future life. We nurture them as eloquent and articulate speakers and writers, who use a wide and purposeful vocabulary to clearly express their thoughts and ideas. We encourage them as readers, who select texts for purpose and pleasure. We aim for our pupils to read texts confidently, fluently and with good comprehension. Pupils are exposed to a wide range of high quality texts to encourage a passion for reading. We use quality picture books, novels and non-fiction texts, which support children on the journey from reading to writing. We aim to ensure that pupils write clearly, accurately and coherently; adapting their language and style for a range of purposes, audiences and contexts and apply their grammatical knowledge in their writing.
Our school provides daily English lessons that are progressive and support skill development. The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum is followed to ensure continuity and progression from entering Nursery, moving on to Reception Class and then through to the National Curriculum in KS1 and KS2. Quality children’s texts are carefully selected to engage and challenge pupils in their Literacy learning. Literacy skills are explicitly taught every day, but English skills are used and applied by children in all areas of the curriculum. Throughout English teaching, cross-curricular links are used to make the curriculum more engaging for children and to give them a purpose for their writing.
In EYFS, pupils receive a daily phonics lesson using the systematic phonic based programme ‘Letters and Sounds’ to teach children phonic skills. Phonics continues to be the main approach for teaching children to read and write in Years 1 and 2 coupled with the teaching of explicit reading comprehension skills.
Guided Reading takes place in all KS1and KS2 classes following the Wayne Tennent Guided Comprehension approach. In KS1 pupils are taught in groups and in KS2 there is a focus on whole class teaching of Guided Reading. Our Guided Reading sessions cover a wide variety of poetry, fiction and non-fiction texts and aim to develop the children’s vocabulary, inference and deduction, prediction, explanation (of authorial intent or impact on the reader), retrieval, summarising and sequencing skills.
Every child has a reading record and an individual scheme reading book that links directly to their current phonics knowledge to ensure that all children are successful within their reading. We encourage all children and parents to read at home and for parents to log their practise within their reading records.
Our pupils are encouraged to read for pleasure and to read widely through our reading scheme and our new school libraries. KS2 classes have the opportunity to visit to our school library where they can choose a book, discuss and give feedback on books, read in a cosy space and listen to their teacher read to them. We also encourage reading for pleasure through book fairs, author visits, reading challenges, celebrating World Book day and by holding a Big Bedtime Reading event. We encourage pupils to donate a book to their class as an alternative to giving sweets on their birthday.
Units of work are planned following the teaching sequence of reading and analysing, gathering content, planning, writing and editing. Pupils are provided with purposeful opportunities to write in a variety of genres and literary styles. Teachers use opportunities in our broad, balanced curriculum to further embed, extend and develop the writing skills of our children through cross-curricular learning. We develop writing skills so that our children have the stamina and ability to write at the age expected standard. We provide a wide range of activities including the use of film and imagery, music, ICT, modelled, shared and guided writing, peer and self- assessment and discussion.
In all areas of the curriculum, speaking and listening skills are developed through talk partners, group discussions and drama activities. By developing pupils’ spoken language, we aim to improve their ability to write clearly and coherently.
Spelling, punctuation and grammar skills are taught explicitly throughout KS1 and KS2 and are a focus in all writing across the curriculum.
Years 2-6 use the Read, Write Inc. spelling scheme, delivering 2/3 sessions per week. I. Pupils practise their spellings at home and are tested weekly.
Cursive handwriting is taught using the Letterjoin programme. Pupils are expected to apply this cursive script in their daily writing. Pupils can practise their handwriting at home by accessing the Letterjoin website.
Pupils are assessed against the 2014 National Curriculum Programmes of Study. Pupils are expected to attain the ‘Age Related Expectations’ (ARE) by the end of each school year. We use a combination of formal methods of assessment, statutory assessments and teacher assessed learning to gain an overall picture of our pupils’ progress and attainment.
- Pupils enjoy writing and use the features of different genres and styles. They can write for different purposes and audiences.
- Skills progress in grammar and punctuation is evident throughout the school in children’s books.
- Writing across the curriculum is the same standard as in English books.
- There is evidence of a clear teaching sequence in books; 1.reading and responding 2.reading and analysis 3.gathering content 4.planning 5.writing 6. editing
- A range of genres are taught across the school (progressing in difficulty) resulting in pupils being exposed to, and knowledgeable about, literary styles, authors and genres. They can express preferences and give opinions, supported by evidence, about different texts.
- Next steps marking provides positive support and directs the pupil on their next steps to improve their writing.
- Pupils’ work is moderated in school and in cluster meetings with other schools to ensure accurate assessments are made.
- Teachers track pupils’ progress at Weeks 10, 20 and 30.
- Each term, pupil progress meetings are held with the Headteacher, deputy headteachers, SENCO and class teachers to ensure different groups and individual progress is monitored and interventions organised to support progress.
- Intervention sessions enable a greater proportion of pupils to be on track to meet year group expectations.
- Subject leader conducts learning walks and book monitoring throughout the year. These inform future areas for improvement and the impact of new initiatives.
- Standards are being met at the end of EYFS, Phonics Screening Check, KS1 and KS2 in line with local and national averages. Each year data is analysed and any areas for improvement identified and addressed.