Our aim is to ignite and nurture a passion for reading and a confidence with words - written and spoken - in all our children.
It is important to us that our curriculum is informed by the best available experts and research. Our English Lead across the Academy is a Chartered Teacher and a member of the United Kingdom Literacy Association (UKLA).
English Curriculum Statement
From the beginning of Reception, we use Read Write Inc. Phonics which is a highly successful English programme created by Ruth Miskin. All Reading Teachers at St. Mary's have received training and support from Ruth Miskin Training, rated Outstanding by the Department for Education, to ensure we meet our aim for all children to become confident and enthusiastic readers.
The Read Write Inc. Phonics programme is carefully matched to the curriculum, giving every child at St. Mary's Catholic Primary the best chance of success.
Reception to Year 2 children are taught using Read Write Inc. Phonics as the main EYFS and KS1 early reading programme but it is also taught as an intervention for children in Years 3 and 4.
In addition to this, Read Write Inc. Fresh Start is a phonics programme with more age appropriate resources for older children which we use as and when required in Years 5 and 6.
Read Write Inc. Progression grid
Reading Progression Map
Our Approach to Spelling
We use Read Write Inc. Spelling for Years 2-6 to meet the demanding spelling requirements of the National Curriculum and to build on the fantastic start our children make with Read Write Inc. Phonics. Reasons why we use this programme:
- Puts the complex requirements of the curriculum into snappy 15-minute lessons
- Makes spelling fun! Aliens from an exciting online spelling planet clearly introduce spelling rules and concepts
- Read Write Inc. Spelling Online includes an Extra Practice Zone including over 1,000 new activity screens for whole-class practice, focusing on the areas children often find challenging. A class login also enables or children to do the practice activities at home: https://www.oxfordowl.co.uk/for-home/
- Provides plenty of writing practice with a clear record of progress
- The emphasis is on teaching spelling, not simply testing spelling
- Although the teaching of phoneme-grapheme correspondence underpins this programme, it also develops children’s knowledge of word families, how suffixes impact upon root words, and provides mnemonics to remember the trickiest spellings.
Throughout KS2, a variety of texts and books will be shared in class. By using a text based approach, children learn to be effective writers, aware of the structural, interpersonal and textual features of different text types. Each teacher selects books and texts appropriate to the age-range and most importantly, that they will LOVE!
At St Mary's, we recognise the importance of the relationship between reading and writing because we know that when reading and writing are taught together, the benefits are greater than when they are taught separately.
Time is prioritised to focus on developing the writing process with children as they move through the school. The key elements of the writing process are planning (brainstorm), drafting, editing and revising, proofread and then publishing or sharing.
Modelling is a key element in the teaching of the writing process, with teachers using 'think out loud' to guide children through how to craft a piece of writing. By modelling, the expert writer lets less experienced writers in on the big secret … What is going on in the head of a more experienced writer? By modelling, we demonstrate options for planning, strategic problem solving, self-monitoring, reviewing, revising and proofreading. We also show how techniques can be used or applied; we work through challenges and teach good grammar. And we do it all within the context of authentic writing!
Here are some examples of the texts children will experience throughout the school during Autumn Term.
Celebrating writing at St Mary's: each half term children's work is published on our writing wall.
Young writers competitions. The website is checked and updated every month. Click the link and showcase your talents to be in with a chance to win!