Access our skills progression charts below
Access our Year Group Recommended reading lists HERE
Access Off By Heart Poetry lists 2019 HERE
Access information on Phonics and Reading Schemes HERE
Our English Curriculum
At Wilby School we have developed a curriculum which ensures children spend longer being taught the common features and skills in reading and writing in order to have a more coherent English curriculum and therefore be able to develop mastery in English.
The curriculum has been adapted using various methods such as: Big Writing (where the children write more extended pieces as a culmination of a three or four-week cycle of work), Slow Writing*, talk for writing, having a strong grammar focus, using high-quality novels and books, as well as using a range of drama.
* slow-writing:an approach to writing that uses a step-by-step structure to create a short text or paragraph; a teacher will give specific writing prompts or instructions as to what grammar, language or punctuation features to include in each sentence
The principles and features characterised in our Curriculum:
- Teachers reinforce an expectation that all pupils are capable of achieving high standards in English.
- The large majority of pupils progress through the curriculum content at the same pace. Differentiation is achieved through additional support and encouraging children’s individual flair and fluency.
- Interventions focus on gaps in knowledge and developing a growth mind-set in order to ensure all children achieve.
- Teaching is underpinned by using high-quality texts and high-quality examples from the teacher which focus on skills to be taught. These texts are then analysed in depth with the children in order for them to learn and apply those skills.
- Grammar and punctuation skills are practiced and consolidated until all children have a firm understanding of how to apply them in to their own work.
Reading at Wilby
Reading begins in Foundation Stage through sharing books with simple or no text so that the children can learn how to tell a story using images. Children progress through the reading bands accordingly with each book level introducing new reading and comprehension skills. There is an emphasis on children learning to decode through daily phonics teaching and developing their sight vocabulary for common exception words. Parents are encouraged to support their child to develop a love of reading through: phonic and reading open mornings sessions, one to one meetings with teachers and Stay and Read/ Phonic sessions.
Reading strategies are established through individual (with teacher, teaching assistant or adult helper) and guided Reading sessions in groups with their class teacher/teaching assistants. Guided reading provides an opportunity for the teacher to teach reading in relation to the differentiated needs of the pupil groups and their level of achievement. Children who fail to progress at the expected rate are supported with reading intervention.
- Teachers use precise questioning in class to develop the children’s thinking and explanations, helping children to make literary choices in their writing.
- Children are articulate in explaining and justifying their thinking when answering comprehension questions.
- Children have opportunities and are taught to work both collaboratively and independently.
- Structured high quality opportunities for speaking and listening are used to develop children’s language skills as well as to support writing and reading.
Our Curriculum Objectives
In English, our main aim as a school is for all children to develop a love of reading as well as the necessary skills needed in writing for life and also be able to have access to future learning.
English is taught in mixed-ability groups for the majority of the time as we believe all children can achieve. In this approach, all children are exposed to some higher-level thinking questions and problem-solving as well as having the opportunity to collaborate and develop a growth mind-set through working with their peers.
Additional intervention is provided for children working below age expectations in reading, along with extension activities and questions for children working at greater depth.
A carefully considered teaching cycle is followed throughout the school. The cycle consists of using high quality texts/ writing stimulus which are interrogated and deconstructed in order for the children to understand the structure and mechanics of writing. This is followed by shared and modelled writing with the teacher, which helps to nurture the children’s fluency and creativity. The children then apply their skills in independent pieces of writing which are finally edited and improved by the individual child as well as receiving some input from their peers. .
As a school we believe in providing the children with as many enrichment opportunities as we can in order to inspire their learning. A few of these opportunities include:
World Book Day – To help promote a love of reading and books we celebrate World Book Day. This is a celebration of reading, books, authors and illustrators and is an opportunity for the children and staff to share their favourite books and stories. Often, authors and illustrators are invited in to work with and inspire the children.
Reading Open Mornings where parents have opportunity to learn about how reading is taught at Wilby and then to view guided reading sessions in practice.
- Whole school/class theme days such as a Victorian or Tudor school day and rich cross curricular topics (such as 'Africa')which lead to high quality extended writing.
- Off by Heart Poetry Competition which encourages pupils to embrace and fully engage with a wider variety of poetry/ techniques of writing.