The study of English develops children’s abilities to listen, speak, read and write for a wide range of purposes, so using language to learn and communicate ideas, views and feelings. It enables children to express themselves creatively and imaginatively, as they become enthusiastic and critical readers of stories, poetry and drama, as well as non-fiction and media texts.
Children gain an understanding of how language works by looking at its patterns, structures and origins. Children use their knowledge, skills and understanding in speaking, reading and writing across a range of different situations.
The aims of English are:
- to enable children to speak clearly and audibly in ways which take account of their listeners;
- to encourage children to listen with concentration in order to be able to identify the main points of what they have heard;
- to enable children to adapt their speech to a wide range of circumstances and demands;
- to develop children’s abilities to reflect on their own and others’ contributions and the language used;
- to enable children to evaluate their own and others’ contributions through a range of drama activities;
- to develop confident, independent readers through an appropriate focus on word, sentence and text-level knowledge;
- to encourage children to become enthusiastic and reflective readers through contact with engaging, enjoyable, challenging and lengthy texts;
- to help children enjoy writing and recognise its value;
- to enable children to write with accuracy, meaning and purpose in narrative and non-fiction;
- to increase the children’s ability to use planning, drafting and editing to improve their work.
- to enable children to write in a neat and fluid handwriting style and take pride in their presentation.
At Denton West End we use a variety of teaching and learning styles in English lessons, as stated by the National Literacy Strategy. Our principal aim is to develop children’s knowledge, skills, and understanding in English. We do this through a daily lesson that has a high proportion of whole-class and group teaching. During these lessons children may experience a whole-class shared reading or writing activity, a whole-class focused word or sentence activity, a guided group or independent activity and a whole-class session to review progress and learning.
They have the opportunity to experience a wide range of texts and use a range of resources such as dictionaries, thesauruses and phonic paddles to support their work. Children use ICT in English lessons where it enhances their learning, as in drafting their work and using multimedia to study how words and images are combined to convey meaning. Wherever possible we encourage children to use and apply their learning in other areas of the curriculum.
Key stage 1 reading schemes and phonic scheme
At Denton West End we believe that the ability to read opens the door to a rich world of books. Children can use their imagination to explore new worlds, to feel safe in familiar environments, to find out about different people and cultures and most importantly to enjoy!
As soon as children come to Denton West End they are introduced to a wide variety of good children’s literature. We encourage the children to listen to stories and to handle books carefully. Story time takes place each day and through this, children are encouraged to respond and join in with familiar texts. This is the first step on the exciting journey of learning to read and one which continues throughout your child’s time at primary school.
We teach the children to read using a wide range of strategies. These include the teaching of phonics, identifying whole words, using picture cues, discussion about the text and predicting what might come next.
We use a variety of reading materials throughout school, including Pearson Bug Club, Pearson Phonics Bug, Collins Big Cats and Oxford Reading Tree. Our books are chosen because they are fun to read, colourful and appropriate to the age and development of the children.
We use Letters and Sounds, Jolly Phonics and Phonics Bug to teach the children phonics. This begins in nursery and develops listening skills in the early stages. We use songs, rhymes and actions to help the children learn. They are taught how to blend and segment words to help them read and spell. The children enjoy these sessions which are timetabled daily in Early Years and Key Stage One.
Parents’ are encouraged to play an active part in helping their child to read. This can be through reading stories to their child on a regular basis. We also expect children to read at home and share their reading books with parents. A little and often is best, especially in the early stages. It is important to remember that reading can include stories, poems, comics, magazines and newspapers.
By working together, we hope that our children will read with confidence, enthusiasm and enjoyment. We want our children to be lifelong lovers of reading.
Reading at Denton West End
Reading is a priority at Denton West End. Here are some of the things that we have and do to promote a love of reading:
We have -
- Two Reading Ambassadors in every class.
- A termly reading challenge every term with a reward for those who succeed.
- A book banded reading system which uses a variety of different schemes to capture the interest of all children.
- Two well resourced libraries.
- A huge variety of guided reading books and resources.
- Reading areas in all classrooms stocked with age appropriate books, newspapers and magazines.
- Story time every day.
- An author, poet or story teller visit at least once per year.
- Phonics workshops for parents.
- As many reading volunteers as we can get to do additional reading with our children.
- Recommended New Books Leaflets which we send out to parents.
- ERIC (everyone reading in class) time most days.
- Opportunities to celebrate reading events like World Book Day.
- Opportunities to recommend books to each other.
Below are some leaflets with recommended reading on for Early Years, Years 1 and 2, Years 3 and 4 and Years 5 and 6. There are some great new books on here!
We try to have as much fun as possible while we are learning. Here are Nursery and Reception on their Fairy Tale Day:
The following website also gives parents advice on what children should be reading at different ages, ideas of what to read to your children and downloadable activities to promote vital communication and literacy skills from birth to age 11. WordsForLife
It’s important for children to rest and recharge over the holidays. But whether you’re taking a trip or staying home, there are lots of ways you can encourage your child to practise their reading, writing and communication skills over the break. This will help children boost their literacy skills over the holidays, and prevent the learning loss that can happen when they’re not at school.
Words for Life have put together a range of activities and ideas for your child to keep reading over the holidays.