Our English curriculum develops knowledge alongside phonic, reading and writing skills, and developing children’s understanding of characters, plot and different genres of text. We use a combination of established systems which best match the needs and interests of the children at Gorefield.
Our curriculum is built around The Essentials Curriculum, RWI (Read Write Inc) and CLPE (Centre for Literacy in Primary Education) schemes of learning, ensuring that teachers plan rigorous lessons with sufficient support and challenge for children at age related expectations. Resources from CLPE and additional RWI resources have been introduced this year to support teachers and children, and further develop consistency. These give structure, but also allow teachers to adapt sessions rather than following a scheme approach, ensuring they can plan to meet the needs of all learners in a session.
English lessons are 45-60 minutes each day dependent on the age of the children, the organisation of the day and the curriculum demands. This flexibility means that teachers are best able to plan for their class and those with specific needs, whilst ensuring consistency across school.
Phonics or Spellings lessons are 30 minutes daily and include reading and some handwriting. Guided reading is flexible dependent on the age and ability of the child. It happens within the RWI lesson for younger children, and the older children either have whole class sessions or group sessions which fit within the RWI slots (3 spelling and 2 reading per week).
Each class set weekly spellings on a Thursday linked to the English Curriculum Appendix lists; learning the spellings works between home and school and the class teacher assesses these on a Wednesday.
Classes also have access to online reading and comprehension resources through Bug Club. This is primarily a home resource, however teachers do use the paper based system for formative assessment and can use it within guided reading sessions so they can focus on working with one child whilst the others complete online learning. Achievement on this platform is shared with parents via Class DoJo.
The school library is well resourced and is organised into sections:
- Wider fiction for independent readers is organised by author
- Non-Fiction is organised by a numerical system based on Dewy numbers and adapted specially for the school and the resources it has
- Early Readers – high interest but lower complexity for older readers who need more support
- Picture books with a section for those aimed at older children
- Guided reading texts including Project X to use with groups of up to 6 children
- Read Write Inc Book Bag Books organised by level
Read Write Inc Phonics is based on a synthetic phonics approach developed by Ruth Miskin and was developed to get children reading by the age of six. Children are taught at the level they are currently working at. Sessions include learning and revisiting graphemes linked to the phonological alphabet and then reading and writing words linked with the graphemes. These sessions also look at words which cannot be phonologically decoded and must be learnt individually. Children select book bag books based on their current learning as their home reading.
Read Write Inc Spelling is a structured approach which builds on the phonics programme but extends to more complex use of graphemes and looks as spelling rules, for instance the use of tion and sion as a phonetic phrase and the addition of common prefix and suffix such as un- or –ing.
CLPE Schemes of Learning are used as a basis of lesson planning and they cover all genres including poetry. These link to quality texts including both classic children books and recent award winners. These plans encourage children to think deeply about character development, plot/text structure and make links both in their reading and writing. This has been based upon the CLPE Power of Reading project.
Bug Club is a platform to support children in learning tables to develop an accurate and speedy response and gives feedback about the steps towards instant recall from more than 10 seconds per question to less than 1.