We consider reading to be of crucial importance and we adopt a variety of approaches to teach the necessary skills to read fluently and for meaning. The children read both individually and in groups when the children share a book together and discuss story, plot, characters etc. We believe that parental involvement is the key to developing the child’s confidence and enjoyment of reading and children take books from the reading scheme and library books home regularly to share with an adult. Parents of reception children are invited to a meeting with their child’s teacher at which our approach to reading and our phonic approach to teaching letter sounds is explained.
We encourage the children to write in order to express their feelings and ideas and to pass on information. We focus on neat presentation and correct grammar and punctuation. Good spelling is encouraged by developing knowledge of word patterns and families and through using dictionaries. Regular handwriting practice encourages a legible, fluent style of joined -up writing.
In teaching English we try to give each child as many opportunities as possible to develop an effective use and understanding of language according to their age – for example, by explaining how a model was designed and built, telling a story clearly, reading silently, aloud for pleasure or information, writing a report of a science experiment, making notes by skim-reading text, using a word processor.
Our phonics teaching is guided by ‘Letters and Sounds’ with additional ideas and resources taken from ‘Jolly Phonics’. We follow a banded reading scheme in which each level contains a new level of challenge (in both decoding and comprehension) for the reader.
The books are taken from a variety of sources including Oxford Reading Tree, Rigby Rockets and Collins Big Cat. Our chosen modern foreign language is French. This is taught for one hour a week in years 3 – 6 (KS2) and led by Madame Farrington a leading languages teacher.