English, Computing and Modern Foreign Languages (French)
‘I know nothing in the world that has as much power as a word. Sometimes I write one, and I look at it, until it begins to shine’
English has a leading place in education and society. By providing a high quality education in English we will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others and through their reading and listening skills others can communicate with them in return. The use of books is vital in all year groups, and through reading we support pupils knowledge bases and encourage growth in acquiring knowledge. We are highly focussed on all pupils gaining reading fluency. We want pupils to understand the potential power of words and to begin to teach them to harness and use this to develop their cultural, social, spiritual and moral development and in turn their responsibility as global community member.
All children in Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 have daily phonics sessions. Phonics is a crucial part of Foundation Stage and Key Stage One as it gives children confidence and helps them become independent readers and writers. At Baydon St Nicholas our teaching is based upon Letters and Sounds. In the early stages of learning phase 2 phonics pupils are also supported in their understanding by using movements linked to sounds (Jolly Phonics inspired). Children also learn to read and spell tricky words (non decodable); words which don’t rely on phonics.
As pupils finish the phases in phonics they (when ready) move into grammar sessions which include spelling rules and patterns. If a pupil is struggling at any point the first step will be to return to phonics instruction. When a pupil is identified as struggling they are assessed carefully to pinpoint exact gaps of knowledge.
Phonics sessions are pitched at the age appropriate level and provide an ambitious and thorough lesson for all. Children will be supported at other times to support ‘catching up’ and to cover identified gaps.
In Year 3 pupils identified to not be reaching the level appropriate for their age will continue to be supported in phonics progression.
The Enjoyment of Reading
We promote an enjoyment of reading through the following:
- Reading corners
- Range of books
- High quality reading books
- Communicating enjoyment from being a teacher – transferred across
- Children being read to every day – access to good stories and plots
- Work linked to books
- Importance of reading, prioritised across curriculum
- Accessibility of texts: Recognition
- Library bus
- Book Fairs (FOBS led initiative)
- Book swop
- Library shelves
- Authors into school
- Marlborough Literary Festival participation
- Buddy reading sessions
The Use of Books
The use of books throughout the school is promoted and celebrated in all areas of the curriculum. Books are seen as a teaching tool, that enhances knowledge, a method of practising skills, and a social and moral guidance for pupils to learn from.
Staff have agreed throughout the school to base some of their choices of class books/teaching texts throughout the year to cover all types of text as specified in the ‘Five Plagues of Reading’ list. (This list was amended, complied and created by the following people or references: Aiden Severs, Ashley Booth, Doug Lemov, Gareth Baker, Gareth Denman , Matthew Dix , Nottingham ELS Library Service, Rob Smith , Scott Evans, Staff at Forest Fields Primary School, The Twitter community of UK teachers) The list contains books relating to the five types of text that we agree as a school children should have access to in order to successfully navigate reading with confidence.
Every teacher throughout the school shares a whole class reading book on a daily basis. We understand the importance of the sense of community in class that is achieved through this shared experience. A range of age appropriate texts are chosen by the class teacher and at times can offer escape, relaxation, an opportunity for pupils to hear more of the world, different worlds and experiences far beyond what they have experienced first hand at this point. Emotions, relationships, challenging ideas and hardships are explored which supports pupils development in all areas.
Benefits of reading a whole class text include:
- Encountering new words and enriching vocabulary
- An appreciation of the beauty and rhythm of language
- Enjoyment and understanding of texts beyond their own reading ability.
- Enhancement of imagination and observation skills
- Improvement of critical and creative thinking skills
- Expansion of general knowledge and understanding of the world
- Empathy is developed as they make connections with the experiences of the characters in the text and with each other
- Modelling of fluent and expressive reading
- Creating a desire to read
Home Reading and the Engagement of Home
As a staff body we are in full agreement that the sharing of reading at home is vital to pupils progression in all areas of life, not just reading skill. As a school we strive to promote home reading and provide the following:
- In Key Stage 1 pupils are provided with phonics stage books matching the level they are currently being taught (90-95% accessible). These books are to be used at home for a few days at a time, ensuring pupils can focus on fluency.
- Baydon Busters – KS1. In our lower classes pupils also take home a personally chosen book from a selection of high quality books for pleasure.
- Each Key Stage 2 class has a class library from which to select reading material from. Upper KS2 also has access to the Wiltshire library van which visits once per month.\
- FOBS support the replenishing of books for classes, with the emphasis on providing high quality, age appropriate texts.
- Reading leaflets are produced and given to parents giving tips and hints on how to read with their child in EYFS.
- Every week each child’s reading record is checked. Pupils who are struggling to read at home are identified and supported in a variety of ways appropriate to each individual child’s needs and circumstance.
Families are expected and encouraged to read with their children daily as part of home learning. At the beginning of their school journey families are provided with literature to support the teaching of reading at home.
Writing is taught with strong, high quality texts at its core throughout the school. To support the teaching of writing, the ‘Wiltshire Progression in Writing’ Document is used (and adapted where needed) by year groups 1-6, which has examples for teachers to use and links to composition strongly. We promote teaching through text as the starting point when appropriate.
We aim for our pupils to develop an appreciation of our rich and varied literacy heritage plus understand and expand their global understanding.
We believe books are also a vital teaching tool to promote better understanding and acceptance of all and can support and tackle ingrained issues in society, such as racism, by educating and supporting pupils to go further than those before them. Therefore the use of literature is actively promoted and used throughout the school to support pupil’s understanding, acceptance and own position/actions needed.
Speaking and Listening
We aim to develop each child’s competence, confidence and enjoyment in speaking and listening. We encourage our children to speak clearly and confidently and articulate their views and opinions. We have the expectation that children express themselves orally in an appropriate way, matching their style and response to audience and purpose. Our children have a range of opportunities to respond to literature, to give and receive instructions and to develop the skills to participate effectively in group discussions.
Throughout the school day children are involved in:
- Speaking and listening for writing (talk for writing)
- Asking and answering questions (see language progression below)
- Role-play where fictional roles are explored
- Opportunities for Individual, small group and whole class reading aloud
- Using spoken language to communicate and respond in normal, everyday situations
- Adjusting what they say depending on others’ responses
Activities which are planned to encourage full and active participation by all children in all subject areas include:
- Talk for learning
- Sharing learning in class and Sharing Act of Worship
- Plays, productions, talent show, readings
- Giving visitors tours of the school
- Talking with school volunteers and visitors
- Class debates
- School Council
We provide a stimulating environment which arouses children’s interest and curiosity, and provide good role models for pupils. We listen carefully and with respect and interest to what the children say extend their range by encouragement, explanation and interpretation give all children equal opportunities to develop their oracy.
I think it’s fair to say that personal computers have become the most empowering tool we’ve ever created. They’re tools of communication, they’re tools of creativity, and they can be shaped by their user.
Computing is the language of the future, used to support creativity, communication and progress. Whilst technology is ever-changing and developing at a tremendous rate, we want our pupils to have an understanding and grounding of how computing is a tool for their future, regardless of the area they choose to excel in. This is backed by our adoption of each unit beginning with ‘we are’. We aim for all pupils to become confident in their use to support their learning and understanding.
French (Modern Foreign Languages)
A different language is a different vision of life
By learning another language we seek to open the door for our pupils in the wider world. We want to engage their curiosity by exploring the French language and using this as platform to developing greater interest and respect for cultures in different countries other than their own. Through the teaching of French from KS1 upwards we aim to increase children confidence in speaking another language, we will support pupils to understand that language has a structure and to begin to see similarities and differences between languages.
French is taught throughout all year groups. The aims and objectives from the National Curriculum have been taken and covered through our four year rolling long term plan which aims, whenever possible, to derive and relate to other curriculum areas to provide pupils with a more in depth and cohesive view of their areas of learning.
We have purposely set out basic key language for KS1 in order that pupils have footholds ready to explore topics in greater depth in KS2.