At Woodcroft Primary School, English is the foundation of our curriculum. We recognise that these are vital skills and are fundamental to our children beyond Woodcroft Primary School and in them becoming lifelong learners. We encourage children to develop a love of reading by using quality texts and topics which inspire young readers and writers across all areas of the curriculum. We recognise the importance of exposing our pupils to language rich, high quality models for both reading and writing. We strive to give the necessary tools to be able to communicate effectively and creatively through spoken and written language. We believe by immersing children in vocabulary rich learning environments this will further develop their word knowledge and linguistic skills.
These aims are embedded across our English lessons and the wider curriculum. We have a rigorous and well-organised English programme that provides many purposeful opportunities for reading, writing and discussion. We use a wide variety of texts to motivate and inspire our children. The reading spine has been collated, with staff recommendations, to deliberately expose the children to inspirational authors, a range of genres and key texts that we want them to have encountered by the time they leave Woodcroft Primary School. Teachers also ensure that cross-curricular links with topics are woven into the programme of study.
We love to celebrate success of all learners and strive to help all children achieve their goals. Reading is celebrated in classrooms and around school at Woodcroft: raffle tickets, free books, certificates and recognition in assemblies. This is to encourage children to read regularly at home. Written work is displayed around the school. In addition, throughout the school year our English curriculum is enhanced through World Book Day, National Poetry Day, parent 1:1 reading, workshops and a range of trips and visits which enrich and complement children’s learning.
Teachers plan and teach English lessons which are differentiated to the particular needs of each child. We help each child maximise their potential by providing help and support where necessary whilst striving to make children independent workers once we have helped to equip them with the confidence, tools and strategies that they need. For children that are working below the age related expected level for their year group, we use HIAS English Planning Toolkits for Pupils with SEND. These provide small, achievable steps to identify barriers to learning for individuals.
The impact on our children is clear: progress, sustained learning and transferrable skills. With the implementation of the writing journey being established and taught thoroughly in both key stages, children are becoming more confident writers and by the time they are in upper Key Stage 2, most genres of writing are familiar to them and the teaching can focus on creativity, writer’s craft, sustained writing and manipulation of grammar and punctuation skills.
As all aspects of English are an integral part of the curriculum, cross curricular writing standards will improve and skills taught in the English lesson are transferred into other subjects; this shows consolidation of skills and a deeper understanding of how and when to use specific grammar, punctuation and spelling objectives.
We hope that as children move on from Woodcroft Primary School, their creativity, passion for English and high aspirations travel with them and continue to grow and develop as they do.