‘Learning English plays an essential role in our lives and helps us to communicate well through reading, writing, speaking and listening.’
Reading is at the heart of our curriculum at St. Mary's and our pupils achieve extremely well due to the variety of reading opportunities provided throughout the day. Our Key Stage 2 results in 2019 revealed that we were in the top 10% for progress in reading and in the top 10% for children achieving the higher standard in Lancashire (over 40% of the year group). These are just some of the ways that reading is taught at St. Mary's. Our end of Key Stage 2 results show a three year upward trend with 100% progress made by all children from their starting point in Reception Class and nearly 50% of children making more than expected progress.
Children are taught guided reading every day in their classes. They work in different ability groups and have a pre-read before engaging with their teacher in a guided read. Following this, they are set tasks which will reveal their understanding to the age appropriate learning. Please see the link below for a selection of children's writing throughout the school. These comprise of a huge variety of written follow-up tasks which the children do independently.
Other forms of reading at St. Mary's...
- Independent Reading/1 to 1 reading – Children will read to teachers, teaching assistants or volunteers and governors on a daily or weekly basis, depending on their various needs. Some of our readers just under age related standards or who might need a boost in reading, will read daily to an adult. This will also include the children who did not pass their phonics re-screening test at Year2. During this session, the skills of fluency and word reading, literal retrieval and support for vocabulary development are a focus.
Please see the link to a video made by the Lancashire English Team on our approach to 1 to 1 reading at St. Mary's.
- Home Reading - All children are provided with reading books to take home and read with parents. A reading record will accompany each book, which will act as a communication tool between staff and parents. Lost or damaged books will be charged for. EYFS and Key Stage 1 children’s books will link with the phonics sound they are learning or have just learnt.
- Reading through the English Unit – Daily opportunities for children to read as a class, in groups or individually with books linked to the topics children are studying through each stage of the English unit they are working on.
- Class Novel & books linked to topic – A novel linked to the class topic will be read at the end of every day and other books will be at hand for children to read which are linked texts.
For ore information on Early Reading and Phonics, please follow the link below...
Writing at St. Mary's
- Emergent Writing – As children enter the Reception class they will be encouraged to develop their writing through play. Writing opportunities will be provided through continuous and outdoor provision as well as discrete writing opportunities. Children in EYFS will have lots of opportunities to develop their fine and gross motor skills before they can hold a pencil successfully to write with.
- Scaffolded Writing – children have opportunities to complete pieces of extended writing at the end of an English unit; the children are given opportunities to plan, draft, edit and redraft their work, improving the skills they have been taught in discrete English lessons.
- Shared Writing will be given high priority throughout the school. Every teacher should model writing for the children at the appropriate level.
- Guided Writing – Teachers will work with groups of children on their next steps to move their writing forward in response to feedback and marking of previous pieces and targets set.
- Independent Write – Children will produce a piece of independent writing based on the genre they have been working on in English the week after they have finished that unit. This will be unscaffolded work.
Spelling, Grammar & Punctuation – the children are taught basic skills for life at the start of and during English lessons and then shown how to apply these into their own writing through shared and guided writing.
A big focus of our school is for skills in reading and writing to be transferred to other areas of the curriculum. Please see our English Policy for more information.