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English

Phonics

Phonics and early reading at Godstone Primary and Nursery School

At Godstone Primary and Nursery School, we believe that all our children can become fluent readers and writers. This is why we teach reading through Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised, which is a systematic and synthetic phonics programme. We start teaching phonics in Nursery and follow the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised progression, which ensures children build on their growing knowledge of the alphabetic code, mastering phonics to read and spell as they move through school.

As a result, all our children are able to tackle any unfamiliar words as they read. At Godstone Primary and Nursery School, we also model the application of the alphabetic code through phonics in shared reading and writing, both inside and outside of the phonics lesson and across the curriculum. We have a strong focus on language development for our children because we know that speaking and listening are crucial skills for reading and writing in all subjects.

Every teacher in our school has been trained to teach reading, so we have the same expectations of progress. We all use the same language, routines and resources to teach children to read so that we lower children’s cognitive load.

Foundations for phonics in Nursery

  • We provide a balance of child-led and adult-led experiences for all children that meet the curriculum expectations for ‘Communication and language’ and ‘Literacy’. These include:
    • sharing high-quality stories and poems
    • learning a range of nursery rhymes and action rhymes
    • activities that develop focused listening and attention, including oral blending
    • attention to high-quality language.
  • We ensure Nursery children are well prepared to begin learning grapheme-phoneme correspondences (GPCs) and blending in Reception.

Daily phonics lessons in Reception and Year 1

  • We teach phonics for 30 minutes a day. In Reception, we build from 10-minute lessons, with additional daily oral blending games, to the full-length lesson as quickly as possible. Each Friday, we review the week’s teaching to help children become fluent readers.
  • Children make a strong start in Reception: teaching begins in the second full week of the Autumn term.
  • We follow the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised expectations of progress:
    • Children in Reception are taught to read and spell words using Phase 2 and 3 GPCs, and words with adjacent consonants (Phase 4) with fluency and accuracy.
    • Children in Year 1 review Phase 3 and 4 and are taught t read and spell words using Phase 5 GPCs with fluency and accuracy.

Daily Keep-up lessons ensure every child learns to read

  • Any child who needs additional practice has daily Keep-up support, taught by a fully trained adult. Keep-up lessons match the structure of class teaching, and use the same procedures, resources and mantras, but in smaller steps with more repetition, so that every child secures their learning.
  • We timetable daily phonics lessons for any child in Year 2 who is not fully fluent at reading or has not passed the Phonics Screening Check. These children urgently need to catch up, so the gap between themselves and their peers does not widen. We use the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised assessments to identify the gaps in their phonic knowledge and teach to these using the Keep-up resources – at pace. 

Teaching reading: Reading practice sessions three times a week

  • We teach children to read through reading practice sessions three times a week. These:
    • are taught by a fully trained adult t small groups of approximately six children
    • use books matched to the children’s secure phonic knowledge using the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised assessments
    • are monitored by the class teacher, who works with each group on a regular basis.
  • Each reading practice session has a clear focus, so that the demands of the session do not overload the children’s working memory. The reading practice sessions have been designed to focus on three key reading skills:
    • decoding
    • prosody: teaching children to read with understanding and expression
    • comprehension: teaching children to understand the text.
  • In Reception these sessions start towards the end of the first half term. Children who are not yet decoding have daily additional blending practice in small groups, so that they quickly learn to blend and can begin to read books.
  • In Year 2, we continue to teach reading in this way for any children who still need to practise reading with decodable books.

Home reading

  • The decodable reading practice book is taken home to ensure success is shared with the family.  A second decodable practice book may also be taken home during the week if the child has read the book at least three times.
    • Reading for pleasure books also go home for parents to share and read to children.
  • Please see the  Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised parents’ resources for more information.

Ensuring reading for pleasure

We value reading for pleasure highly and work hard as a school to grow our Reading for Pleasure pedagogy.

  • We read to children every day. We choose these books carefully as we want children to experience a wide range of books, including books that reflect the children at Godstone Primary and Nursery School and our local community as well as books that open windows into other worlds and cultures.
  • In Nursery and Reception, children have access to the reading corner every day in their free flow time and the books are continually refreshed.
  • Children from Nursery onwards have a home reading record. The parent/carer records comments to share with the adults in school and the adults will write in this on a regular basis to ensure communication between home and school.
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Reading

Intent

  • To provide our pupils with a rich and varied English curriculum focused around achieving expected standards as laid out in the National Curriculum
  • To promote and instill a love for reading and high-quality literature to enable our pupils to become lifelong readers
  • To expose pupils to a wide range of high-quality texts to inspire their learning
    • Reduce impact of educational inequality through greater access to cultural capital

Implementation

  • Changed from traditional ‘Guided Reading’ sessions in 2017
    • Why?
      • To move away from ability grouping and sets
      • To engage all children with high quality texts
      • Greater focus on vocabulary
    • Why?
      • ‘The correlation between vocabulary size and life chances is as firm as any correlation in educational research. Vocabulary is important, because it embodies and communicates concepts… The considerable majority of vocabulary is only really encountered when reading and is not used in everyday speech.’
      • Sean Harford HMI National Director, Education 2019
      • All teaching staff provided with the Academic Word List (Averil Coxhead) – words that appear with great frequency in a broad range of academic texts
      • Parents of Year 5 and 6 provided with list to help support their children

Phonics

      • Starting in Nursery and Reception
      • Use of Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised
      • Use of cued articulation to support children to remember the sounds using an action
      • Termly assessment
      • Reading books closely linked with phonics phase
      • Daily phonics sessions
      • TA phonics training for interventions

Reading Dogs

  • Skills focused  age appropriate for each key stage
  • Each ‘Reading Dog’ links with the curriculum statements for reading in each key stage
  • Strong focus on Vocabulary Victor in line with our vocabulary drive

Whole Class Reading

    • Challenge for greater depth readers with a range of texts including archaic/classic texts
      • Cultural Capital – text complexity in a range of text types
    • High quality text aimed just above independent reading age for age-related expectations
    • Individual assessments collected
    • Differentiated questioning to support lower attaining pupils whilst still exposing them to high quality texts

Reciprocal Reading

  • Developing independent readers and learners
  • Gives pupils ownership of their learning
  • Group-based activity promoting BLP skills including: collaboration, making links, interdependence and questioning
  • Focus on ‘The Clarifier’ in line with vocabulary drive

Reading For Pleasure

  • Reading bands
  • Reading at home
  • Support for parents – Reading Dogs questioning bookmarks

Reading Morning

  • Parents invited in to learn about how we teach reading
  • This year – focus on specific reading dog each session
  • Question prompts demonstrated during session
  • Activity linked to reading dog skill

Impact

  • Internal data school data (Target Tracker)
    • 73.7% of pupils achieved ARE for reading at the end of 2018/2019
    • Females are higher achievers
    • Non-FSM, non-PP and non-SEND pupils have better attainment
      • Consistent with Surrey data
      • Cross group pupils account for more than one pupil group
    • Early readers tracking/ pupils at risk of not meeting ARE
      • Targeted in-class support and interventions in place for pupils at risk of not meeting ARE
  • Whole school (Year 1 – 6) termly assessments introduced in 2018
  • Teaching the skills required to sit end of key stage tests (SATs) in years 2 and 6
  • Data shows in year increase in knowledge and skills across year groups
    • Each termly assessment for each year group is of comparable difficulty allowing us to note improvements between terms
  • Teachers are able to use online gap analysis to tailor their subsequent lessons to focus on specific reading skills

Actions

  • Senior staff to listen to pupils read as an extra monitoring check to ensure reading books are ability appropriate
    • Focus on pupils on Early Readers/ At Risk document
  • Phonics interventions for Year 1 and 2 pupils at risk of not passing Phonics Screening Test/resit
  • Reading lesson observations to ensure consistency of teaching reading skills across the school
  • Work with TAs to deepen understanding of teaching through reciprocal reading, whole class reading using the reading dogs and how they can support pupils in class and through interventions
  • Work on embedding understanding of cultural capital by ensuring pupils have access and are being exposed to a range of high quality text
    • Text mapping for the curriculum
  • Curriculum to move from two year cycle to one year cycle

3 Year Vision

  • For reading to be at the centre of our curriculum
  • Continuation and embedding of teaching practices implemented over the last 2 years
  • Review texts used to ensure they provide cross-curricular links specific to each year group’s foundation subjects
  • Embed reading dogs practice within the 3-week writing learning journey

 

Writing

Intent

  • To provide our pupils with a rich and varied English curriculum focused around achieving expected standards as laid out in the National Curriculum
  • To engage pupils by providing them with diverse opportunities to write in a variety of styles
  • To speak, plan and write fluently in order to communicate effectively

Implementation

  • Following writing consultation (2017) with Jonathon Gambier, moved to Talk for Writing style curriculum
  • English is blocked into a 3-week learning journey. At the end of every week of the learning journey, the children will be writing an extended piece of writing with a clear focus
    • Week 1 – Imitation
    • Week 2 – Innovation
    • Week 3 – Invention
  • Each half-term pupils will complete 1 non-fiction and 1 fiction block
    • Ensuring they are provided with opportunities to write in a wide range of styles across the year and key stages
  • Text based with skills focus around a specific writing style (fiction and non-fiction)
  • Reading for writing – exploring and analysing a range of carefully selected texts which show the key features of the text type
  • Cultivate a love of literature to inspire writing for pleasure
  • Develop skills that enable pupils to read writing aloud to edit for errors and improvements
  • Weekly grammar and spelling (linked to weekly spellings) focus
  • Promote poetry to allow pupils to learn poems by heart

Impact

  • Internal data whole school (Target Tracker)
    • 63.9% f pupils achieved ARE for writing at the end of 2018/2019.
    • Females are higher achievers
    • Non-FSM, Non-PP and Non-SEND pupils have better attainment
      • Consistent with Surrey data
      • Cross group pupils account for more than one pupil group
    • FSM and PP pupils have progressed faster than their non-FSM and non-PP peers over the year
      • Targeted in-class support and interventions in place for pupils at risk of not meeting ARE

Actions

  • Writing book look to focus on first 3 week block of writing following the writing sequence: imitate, innovate, invent
  • Writing learning walk with focus on vocabulary within texts and pupils work
  • Work with TAs to deepen understanding of teaching sequence and importance of vocabulary and how they can support pupils in class and through interventions
  • Work on embedding understanding of cultural capital by ensuring pupils have access and are being exposed to a range of high quality texts
  • Text mapping for the curriculum
  • Curriculum to move from two year cycle to one year cycle

3 Year Vision

  • Remain tightly knitted with reading curriculum to ensure use of varied, quality texts that inspire writing that meets or exceeds expectations
  • Continuation and embedding of teaching practices implemented over the last 3 years
  • Link in seamlessly with new cross-curricular curriculum to be implemented over the next 3 years