Christ Church C of E Primary

English at Christ Church

At Christ Church, the high quality teaching of English is a key priority and we believe that teaching children not only to read and write successfully, but to enjoy the journey, is key to enable them to reach their full potential. We aim to develop a life long love of reading and writing through good quality texts that leads to a love of English literature and language. 

 

Writing at Christ Church

Christ Church Primary School is using The Literary Curriculum as our whole-school English strategy. 

 

The Literary Curriculum places good quality texts at the core of the English curriculum. It immerses children in a literary world therefore creating strong levels of engagement to provide meaningful and authentic contexts for writing. The use of high quality books offers a range of writing opportunities and a clear audience which allows children to write as authors, journalists, poets and much more. Over time, children gradually build their bank of good quality texts from picture books, novels, poems and non-fiction books.

The Literary Curriculum is a book based approach which means over time, children are exposed to a range of books that have been chosen carefully to fit within the curriculum. Books are chosen that ask more questions than give answers so that children are gripped into the book and fully engaged within the text. At the beginning of each book sequence there is an exciting and engaging hook into learning (click here for some examples). This book based approach allows a range of writing outcomes to allow a broad and balanced range of genres in writing that all children can access. Some examples of writing outcomes across the school can be seen here

At Christ Church we want to make sure that our expectations are high and that we have good progression in writing skills across the school. Through this approach children develop the skills to become fluent, creative writers with the ability to write coherently for a range of purposes and different audiences. 

Click here to view our overview of literary themes and texts

The National Curriculum Programmes of Study

By placing books at the core, we are allowing teachers to use the text as the context for the requirements of the National Curriculum. Writing opportunities are meaningful and the audience is clear. Books offer this opportunity: our final aim would be that that children have real reasons to write, whether to explain, persuade, inform or instruct and that where possible, this can be embedded within text or linked to a curriculum topic.

The programmes of study for writing at Key Stages 1 and 2 consist of

  • transcription (spelling and handwriting)
  • composition (articulating ideas and structuring them in speech and writing).

Writing has a high profile at Christ Church. In order to make good progression in writing, children need to:

  • Enjoy writing and recognise its value,
  • Write with confidence, clarity and imagination,
  • Write grammatically correct sentences that are punctuated accurately,
  • Understand the features of and how to write in a range of genres and non-fiction texts,
  • Plan, draft, revise and edit their own writing,
  • Develop an adventurous and broad vocabulary,
  • Know their next steps and how they can make their writing better,
  • Develop fine motor skills to ensure consistent mark making with increasing dexterity, to produce recognisable letters, developing into a continuous cursive style of handwriting,
  • Use phonological knowledge and spelling rules to spell accurately.

Spelling, vocabulary, grammar and punctuation

There are two statutory appendices in the New Curriculum on Spelling and on Vocabulary, Grammar and Punctuation. Spellings are taught weekly using Literary Leaves meaning spellings are meaningful and can be used in context during the current book sequence. These spellings are sent home weekly for them to learn at home. Grammar and punctuation is taught as part of the English lesson. Grammar and Punctuation is taught through writing and reading sessions. The Literary Curriculum embeds phonics, spelling and grammar throughout their book sequences to allow children to cover the full curriculum whilst also using these skills purposefully and in context. 

Click here to view the National Curriculum Spelling Appendix Years 1-6

Click here to view the National Curriculum Vocabulary, Grammar and Punctuation Appendix Years 1-6

Phonics and Reading at Christ Church

EYFS and Key Stage One

At Christ Church, we follow the Letters and Sounds guidance for the teaching of SSP (Systematic, Synthetic Phonics). We use phonicsplay.com to support the planning of our phonics teaching which is planned in line with Letters and Sounds. Throughout each phase taught, formative assessment takes place and any children not making expected progress are identified and given extra support or additional teaching.

At the end of Year 1, children take the National Phonics Screening Check. This requires children to be able to read 20 real and 20 fake/nonsense words to assess their ability to decode words phonetically. Any children who do not pass the phonics screening will continue to receive additional phonics support in Year 2. 

Individual reading is used throughout EYFS and Year 1. Children read decodable books which are closely matched to their phonics learning until they are confidently reading with increasing fluency. Children are exposed to a range of decodable books including non-fiction books, books that relate to their current topic and picture/ reading for pleasure books. The class teacher and English lead regularly monitor reading assessments and identify 'hot list' readers who read at least three times per week to develop fluency and accelerate progress. 

In Year 2, individual reading is used throughout the school year until Summer Term 1. Children then move onto Literacy Leaves sequences where children will deepen their comprehension skills and written comprehension skills whilst continuing to improve their fluency during whole class taught lessons. Again, children identified as making slow progress become 'hot list' readers who read at least three times per week one to one with an adult to develop fluency and accelerate progress.

Key Stage Two

In Key Stage 2, children are taught reading through Literacy Leaves learning sequences. Children engage in purposeful, meaningful reading experiences, embedded in a language rich environment with a fantastic range of diverse, relatable texts. In lessons, directed activities are given to explore and analyse a text in greater depth. Planning and teaching is scaffolded to ensure that ALL children are achieving excellent outcomes despite their decoding level. Throughout these lessons, teachers continue to model reading skills, using echo and choral reading, with reading out loud being a core component to ensure children continue to have opportunities to develop their fluency and prosody.

Those children in KS2 who are not achieving age-related expectations will continue to read three times a week, one to one with an adult to ensure their fluency skills continue to be developed and progress is accelerated. 

Phonics and Reading at Christ Church Meeting for Parents

For further information about Phonics and Reading at Christ Church please see the presentation below. 

Useful links: 

Accurate Phonics Sounds Video

Phonics Play Website and Resources

Love Reading

LoveReading4Schools

But a love of books and learning at Christ Church goes beyond just learning to read and write and we would encourage the children, staff and parents to also read for pleasure at home too. We are working alongside Lovereading4schools and you can also join the website by using the following link: 

https://www.lovereading4schools.co.uk/school/8242  

Here you will find the recommended reading spine for each year group, plus a list of books recommended by the lovereading4schools editorial experts 

The link will take you to a login page: 

Click Sign Up Now

Scroll down and select For Parents 

Then,  Register Now

It will take just a few moments to sign up and find our school.

Find Christ Church C of E Primary SE18 3RS and then click on Follow

Enter the page password: automatic478

Then search to your heart’s content for books to inspire that lifelong love of reading for your children.

If you don’t have access to a computer, let us know which list you would like and we’d be happy to print it out for you.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us. 

Red Ted at Christ Church

Hi! My name is ‘Red Ted’ and I am a very special bear!

Did you know that once a month the teachers at Christ Church award me to a class member who has worked really hard to either improve their reading, read regularly and fill in the Reading Record or have taken on more challenging books.

I am given out at Family Collective Worship and it is always a very proud moment – so from Reception, all the way to Year 6, you have the opportunity to give me a home.

Maybe I will be coming home with you soon, so keep reading!