New Oscott Primary School

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Welcome to our English Curriculum

Writing – We are Writers

Our core values are at the heart of our English curriculum which is under-pinned by our agreed principles and beliefs.

At New Oscott, we set out to inspire, engage and create a school of eager writers full of imagination and creativity. We develop this through the use of a range of stimuli which captivate and immerse the children with the writing process. This can be through drama based activities, film clips, imagery, debates, story mapping, art and ensuring the writing tasks are both enjoyable and purposeful. A range of text types are studied and written within each year group to ensure breadth of study; this is then further developed towards how the audience and purpose of a particular text type affects both our grammatical and language choices.

Our Writing Intent 

Our children will be encouraged to become confident and able to write for a range of audiences and purposes. A clear progression of grammar and punctuation skills are taught within units, alongside spelling rules, which are evident in pieces of independent, extended writing. High-quality models, which revisit prior learning as well as present new learning, provide high expectations for writing. Combining writing with their love for reading, children are given the opportunity to write creatively in exciting writing lessons which are designed to suit the children’s interests and needs. The draft, edit and publish sequence of lessons, each half term, will promote writing across the school and allow the children to celebrate their achievements. Exposure to ambitious vocabulary will enable the children to make purposeful language choices in their writing. 

Within writing units, lessons are designed to teach appropriate grammar and punctuation skills linked to a particular text type, based on the National Curriculum VGPS objectives for each year group. The lessons build upon the previous year’s learning and as the year progresses, children become secure in using the skills, and this progression is evident in their extended writing.

Implementation - how do we plan and teach English?

Planning is a skills-based journey of learning which is regularly adapted to meet the individual needs of the children.  Written models and live modelling scaffold writing while also setting high expectations and challenge to others. Vocabulary, grammar and punctuation skills are threaded throughout each unit, culminating in an end of unit write which allows children to apply these skills to an extended piece. 

Writing checklists are used in Years 1-6 for children to self-assess to identify the objectives they are able to use and those which they need to focus on in the next piece. Opportunities are given for collaborative learning including shared writing and peer marking. This allows children to rehearse and elaborate their writing with others. Independent application of writing skills come when children produce their end of unit write or Exciting Writing. 

Marking, is used to check understanding of and identify the skills that the children have demonstrated in their writing and to give developmental next steps in order to move their learning forward. Next steps also allow children to review their learning after the lesson: the next day, or in future lessons. In all marking, across the curriculum, spellings and punctuation errors are identified.

Impact - what does progress look like?

A clear progression of writing is evident across the school, with children in Years 5 and 6 independently making choices about their writing and applying their skills through rich writing opportunities.  Lessons are sequenced so learning builds throughout a unit, culminating in independent, extended application of learnt skills. The carefully designed curriculum allows children to build upon previous learning and secure the skills needed to write across a range of text types, confidently and independently. Combining their love for reading and publishing with writing, children will enjoy the writing process and be proud to celebrate their pieces. Ongoing revisiting of writing skills and objectives within and between years strengthens and deepens children’s understanding of how to be an effective and accurate writer. Children will be able to articulate the purpose of editing as well as how they have edited successfully. 

When our children leave New Oscott a good learner in Writing will…

Discuss and evaluate how authors use language, including figurative language, considering the impact on the reader.

Be able to write for a range of audiences and purposes using accurate grammatical features and a wide range of ambitious and effective vocabulary which draws on what they have read as models.

Have a passion for writing, encouraging them hopefully to wish to write in their own time. 

Understand the purpose of drafting, editing and publishing a piece of writing.

English - Spelling

Our Spelling Intent

Throughout the school, discrete weekly spelling lessons are taught to enable the children to slowly build upon their existing knowledge and make links in their learning. In Years 1 & 2, this happens as well as regular phonics sessions each week. This allows clear progression through the objectives. As each year progresses, children will become more accurate spellers and therefore more skilled writers due to the development of spelling rules. Evidence of these spelling rules within the children’s written work will be seen across all subjects to help teachers assess the impact. 

Implementation - how do we plan and teach Spellings?

Each week in Years 1-6 one discrete spelling lesson is taught. For Years 1 & 2, this is in addition to their regular weekly phonics lessons. Teachers use the year group objectives to plan their spelling lessons in order to ensure the correct spelling rules are covered to aid progression. Children are given differentiated challenge levels to choose from linked to their given spelling rules and spelling journals are used to document lessons. Children are given the opportunity to apply words following the given spelling rule to their writing by writing detailed sentences and paragraphs which also include some of their year group writing objectives. Weekly spelling homework, linked to the spelling rule covered in the lesson, is given to help children practise the spelling rule within isolated words and within sentences to ensure they understand the meaning and how to spell it.

Impact- what does progress look like?

A spelling display is evident in each classroom and updated weekly based on each year group's current spelling rule. All classes from Years 1-6 have shown improvement in their year group spelling test scores from their baseline tests at the start of the year to their spring term tests, with some children already making a significant increase in their score. A spelling learning walk in the autumn term in Years 3-6 showed the impact of the spelling staff training at the beginning of the year through the use of high expectations in all classes, appropriate learning objectives and success criteria and differentiated challenge levels. As a result, staff and children in all classes had high quality discussions about spelling rules and patterns using a range of key spelling terminology. In Years 1 & 2, the use of RWI to teach regular phonics lessons each week as well as still teaching one discrete spelling lesson each week has allowed the children to make links in their learning and has created a more natural progression in their understanding of spellings.

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Spelling strategies

Welcome to our Reading Curriculum

Reading – We are Readers

Our core values are at the heart of our Reading curriculum which is under-pinned by our agreed principles and beliefs.

At New Oscott, we aim to inspire and foster a love of reading amongst our pupils. Reading is fundamental to the development of children and the foundation for their learning throughout their time at school. We develop this love through exposing children to a range of high quality texts in our English and Reading lessons; our school and class libraries and a range of theme days and special events such as World Book Day, where purposeful activities are planned to celebrate and share children’s favourite books/characters and the Scholastic Book Fair, which promote and encourage a love of reading through rewards to buy new books of their choice, author visits to inspire children, reading buddies and paired reading where each class pairs up with a class of a different key stage to share books of their choice. 


Our Reading Intent

Our children will be exposed to an extensive range of high quality age-related texts, fiction and non-fiction, both in well-stocked reading areas and Reading schemes that will encourage children to select books that are appropriate for their developmental needs and cover a range of interests. Children will read not just with fluency and understanding but with enjoyment and confidence. Reading skills enable children to comprehend and engage fully across the curriculum. Children’s reading attainment will be assessed to identify and close gaps quickly and effectively. The quality of texts and teacher modelling will support pupils in developing their language and vocabulary across the curriculum.

Our Reading Curriculum is progressive in that it builds on the children’s prior knowledge of the assessment focuses. Using these, children’s reading skills will continue to be developed, consolidated and applied to a range of age appropriate texts. 

Implementation - how do we plan and teach Reading?

In Years 2-6, there are five Reading lessons a week. There is a focus on improving children’s vocabulary by pulling apart the text and learning how to use any new vocabulary within their writing. Reading lessons target specific reading domains to help develop the children’s comprehension skills. Children complete independent comprehension activities throughout the week and also complete a further reading for pleasure activity linked to their own reading book. This may then complete a book review and recommend texts to their peers. Reading lessons enable teachers to continue to stretch, challenge, support and guide the children at a more targeted level. Comprehension activities are created according to children’s needs.

In writing units that are linked to texts, comprehension tasks will be completed to ensure and develop the children’s understanding of them and will ultimately feed into their writing. 

Within Reading lessons and in 1:1 reading, struggling readers are identified and bespoke interventions are put in place. Those who are secure readers are given opportunities to demonstrate a greater depth of understanding through extended answers, targeted questioning requiring more reasoned answers and making greater links across and between texts.

Early Reading:

In EYFS, Year 1 and 2, decoding, blending and comprehension skills are taught in line with the reading practice guidance provided by our phonics scheme, 'Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised'. We ensure children access decodable books, including Big Cat Phonics and Floppy's Phonics. Through these schemes, children are provided with materials which are closely matched to their phonic knowledge. 

Impact - what does progress look like? 

Reading skills based sessions will be evident across the school with opportunities for reading domains to be explicitly taught and in depth discussions about the texts read held, including the use and definitions of new vocabulary in context. Children will have high quality discussions about the language used and a multitude of different domains being explored depending on the need of the children in each class. Children will be able to explain the benefits of the whole class sessions and how it prepares them for any assessments due to the range and style of questions, as well as discussing how what they read can have an impact on their writing.

When our children leave New Oscott, a good learner in Reading will...

Have a love for reading.

Be exposed to and enjoy reading a range of texts.

Be able to read and discuss an increasingly wide range of fiction, poetry, plays, non-fiction and reference books or textbooks.

Make comparisons within and across books.

Discuss and evaluate how authors use language, including figurative language, considering the impact on the reader.

Be able to write for a range of audiences and purposes using accurate grammatical features and a wide range of ambitious and effective vocabulary which draws on what they have read as models.

We use APE in our Reading lessons to help children to think more deeply and answer questions about what they have read.

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