English can be thought of as being made up of speaking and listening, writing and reading. At Weston we make opportunities across the curriculum to develop these skills to ensure that pupils are motivated by English in a meaningful and exciting way.
Speaking and Listening
Speaking and listening is not taught explicitly but it permeates every element of school life. A key strength of our curriculum is the time dedicated across the school to performance in front of large audiences, particularly with our regular class assemblies, which parents and carers attend.
Teachers plan rich and varied writing tasks, with meaningful purposes, which promote a secure use of English grammar. All of our writing is stimulated by the use of high-quality books.
Phonics & Reading
At Weston we are passionate about reading and we endeavour to make sure that all our children develop a love of reading and that every child leaves us as a reader. Reading is very much at the heart of our curriculum.
Central to our approach to developing early reading is the teaching of systematic synthetic phonics using Read, Write, Inc. Daily, discrete high quality teaching alongside effective assessment and tracking helps us to ensure that children meet the ambitious reading targets that are set for them.
At Weston, we use Pearson Bug Club levelled e-books that are accessible both in school and at home via tablets and computers.The school supplements this comprehensive, online reading scheme with several physical reading schemes to support the learning and love of reading. These schemes are upgraded and added to through regular investment.
All of our classrooms feature bright, stimulating and inviting book corners for children to sit and read in and we regularly invest in high quality texts for the children as well as taking full advantage of the Cheshire Educational Library Service. In our book corners you will often find children’s recommendations and reviews of their favourite books. By the time children leave us in Year 6, they have read many contemporary and classic books by significant authors.
Guided reading is a daily occurrence throughout the school and in this time children have further opportunity to engage with high quality texts and show their understanding through a range of responses such as drama and extended writing opportunities. We also ensure that throughout their time at school children regularly hear adults reading aloud.
Our reading curriculum is primarily delivered in two ways:
through guided reading
through reading-focused lessons
During these sessions, children are taught the key skills of: retrieval, inference, structure, language choice, purpose/viewpoint and context.
At every stage of a child's life, reading should be pleasurable and we believe that time should be devoted at school and home to 'reading for pleasure'. During curriculum time throughout the week, children have the opportunity to read books of their own choice, which they take home, read and discuss. This is key to the development and enjoyment of reading.
Throughout our school, English planning routinely uses high-quality books as a starting point. Using an excellent text as a basis for learning really engages the children and helps to develop quality writing as well as stimulating learning in other areas of the curriculum.