At Larkrise Primary School, we want to Inspire our children through the English curriculum. This English curriculum is based on the English programmes of study: key stages 1 and 2.
The English Curriculum also covers key aspects of the Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage, where English is covered within Communication and Language and Literacy.
Inspire Knowledge and Skills: We provide an English curriculum that is designed to balance acquiring a broad and deep knowledge alongside opportunities to apply skills across reading, writing and spoken language. This will also be applied by giving children the opportunity to apply and develop what they have learnt in English across wider learning within the Inspire Curriculum.
We model and encourage a passion for language from the start of children’s time at Larkrise. We provide the children with varied speaking and listening opportunities alongside a text-rich curriculum. We create a positive reading and writing culture in school, where both are promoted, enjoyed and considered a ‘pleasure’ for all children.
When our children leave school, our goal is for them to be avid readers, children who read fluently and widely and can express preferences and opinions about the texts they read. We want them to read for pleasure, having had access to a wide range of text types, genres and authors in order for them to make informed opinions about their favourites.
We want children to write clearly, accurately, and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences. We support children to acquire a wide vocabulary, a solid understanding of grammar and be able to spell new words by effectively applying the spelling patterns and rules they learn throughout their time in primary school.
Inspire Creativity & Adventure: Along with our Inspire Personal, Social, Health, and Economic education, our Inspire English Curriculum sits at the heart of our Inspire Curriculum. The knowledge and skills that are developed within English are used across the wider Inspire Curriculum. Having a sound grounding in English opens up our curriculum for all children freeing them to live our values of Creativity and Adventure.
Inspire Kindness: By ensuring that children are articulate, well-read and effective communicators of the written word, they will be well-informed on the world they live in and able to express themselves effectively so that they can make a positive difference in it.
Our Schemes of work for English are structured across four areas of learning which can be found in our English Progression Grids:
Phonics & Early Reading: From EYFS and Year 1, we use Bug Club Phonics Active Learn, which is a synthetic, systematic phonics programme.
We want to ensure that children enjoy reading and hearing stories and other text types. We will give the children daily opportunities to apply the skills they have learnt from their phonics lessons, using our four key ways of teaching reading - Larkrise Reading Approach and READING VIPERS - where they will be explicitly taught in Reading sessions to read and re-read a rich and stimulating range of texts where they will develop reading skills.
Writing: Our text-rich curriculum is the starting point for learning throughout the school. Carefully chosen texts inspire and model what good writing looks like to children. Focusing on purpose and audience motivates the children to be the best they can be. Woven into each writing project is the teaching of spelling, grammar and punctuation. The children are explicitly taught the technical skills needed to achieve a successful writing outcome.
The children have varied writing opportunities throughout the year, which all build up the teacher's formative assessment. Through verbal, on-the-spot feedback, the children clearly know what they need to do to improve their writing skills. Alongside this, we use No More Marking and FFT to enable us to track the children’s progress and inform our planning closely.
The English Curriculum has been written to support all children. Each lesson is sequenced so that it builds on the learning from the previous lesson, and where appropriate, activities are scaffolded so that all Children can succeed and thrive. Scaffolded activities provide children with extra resources, such as visual prompts, to reach the same learning goals as the rest of the class. Exploratory tasks foster a deeper understanding of a concept, encouraging children to apply their learning in different contexts and make connections with other learning experiences across the Inspire Curriculum.
Like all areas of our Inspire Curriculum, we have used research evidence to develop our pedagogy of teaching and learning. For more information, please see our Inclusive Quality First Teaching Key Principles.
Phonics & Early Reading: Children move through the Bug Club programme as a whole class, with extra interventions to catch up if needed. Keeping the class together in this way has been shown to foster a sense of social inclusion and boost the children's performance, progressing more slowly, which helps to prevent gaps from widening. Differentiation is taught through questioning, which enables each child to feel fully engaged. For some children, a more sensory approach is hugely beneficial, and we use magnetic letters and boards to consolidate children’s blending and segmenting.
Our systematic approach to phonics ensures daily opportunities to revisit and consolidate what they have learnt, which leads to embedded automaticity and familiarity, which is a vital part of the programme.
Writing: At Larkrise, we teach writing in a structured way. The diagram below shows how this is taught within a three-week cycle. From year 1 will also teach cursive handwriting. We do this, so children learn to spell correctly since hand movements create some muscle memory that retains the spelling patterns. In cursive writing, the incorporation of movement, pressure and visual processing is multifaceted. This augments visual, spacial and coordination skills.
Reading: As children move past the early reading and phonics, they still practice reading both at school and at home. We have book corners and a library where children can choose books to read in class and at home. These books are regularly changed to the children’s interests and learning needs. Each child will have the opportunity daily to enjoy stories in groups and individually with adults. Children then learn to “read” books, retelling the stories as they revisit their favourite books. The diagram below shows how we teach reading at Larkrise.
By the time children in Year 6 leave us, we want them to have the following experiences and understanding:
Inspire Knowledge and Skills: Children will have the knowledge and set out in the English progression Grids.
Inspire Creativity & Adventure: Children will be able to use the knowledge and skills learned through the 'Inspire English' Curriculum to answer the 'Big Questions' that are asked each term. They will be able to do this by giving key reasoning for their answer that is backed up by evidence from their own experiences.
Children will be able to express themselves through the written and spoken word which will broaden their understanding and enjoyment of the other subjects within our Inspire curriculum and in any future learning.
They will be able to experience the following:
Inspire Kindness: Ulitminatly we want our children to use the spoken and written word to Inspire Kindness.
Kindness to themselves, each other, their community and our environment.
More information on the impact of the Curriculum can be seen in our celebration Magazine, ‘Larkrise Look’.