At Hexthorpe, we are passionate about ensuring reading is at the centre of everything we do and that it permeates our whole curriculum. We aim to ensure a balanced mix of approaches to reading so that all of our pupils achieve the skills required, a positive attitude, confidence as well as interest and a love of reading. Successful approaches to the teaching of reading should encourage children to use a variety of strategies in their pursuit of meaning. Our drive is to ensure that children are supported in their early reading as soon as they enter our school, by preparing them through pre-phonics, phonics, developing a love of reading and early language development. Reading for pleasure is central to everything in our school to ensure every child finds the books that interest them and encourage them to want to read more.
Our pupils learn to read and write effectively and quickly using the Read Write Inc. Phonics programme. Children are taught to decode letter-sound correspondences, read common exception words on sight, understand what they have read and read aloud with fluency and expression.
FS2 – Y3 children complete daily RWI phonics lessons which are differentiated according to need and ability. Children in Y1 – Y3 who have completed the phonics programme will access RWI comprehension. Children who require additional support with their phonic development access Fast Track Tutoring. Pupils in Y4 to Y6 who would benefit from additional phonic support are identified and targeted to complete the RWI Fresh Start Programme.
We make sure that pupils read books that are closely matched to their increasing knowledge of phonics and the common exception words. This is so that, early on, they experience success and gain confidence that they are readers. Re-reading and discussing these books with their teacher supports their increasingly fluent decoding.
Our reading curriculum is broken down into the following key areas: background knowledge, vocabulary, summarise and predict, visualise and comprehension questioning.
Reading is taught daily across the whole school and it is the teacher’s responsibility to ensure that a personalised, rigorous and sequential approach is delivered to support the needs of all individuals within their class.
All children will have opportunities to practice and enhance their fluency within reading sessions every day. Children need to be given the opportunity and encouragement to read independently in order to build confidence, stamina and fluency, as well as develop their experience of a range of books and authors.
All children have their own individual reading record book. Throughout school, pupils read books that are matched to their reading ability whether this be through their phonic sounds, specific sight vocabulary or other identified reading needs. Focused readers are identified in each year group based on previous outcomes and current attainment. All children are heard reading by both teaching assistants and the teacher however the focus children are heard more frequently.
The impact of this rigorous and robust approach to the teaching of reading will allow all pupils to display enthusiasm for reading and choose to read for pleasure. As we believe that reading is the key to all learning, the impact of our reading curriculum results in children reading for meaning. Staff enthusiastically share texts and show themselves as readers. Children choose books for pleasure, entering a wide range of worlds that reading opens up and immersing themselves in topics of interest in lessons and beyond. Children can confidently, fluently and in independently read for a range of different purposes across the whole curriculum and as a result their skills are enhanced and understanding of the world increased.
At Hexthorpe, we are passionate about delivering an engaging, exciting curriculum that helps develop a love of writing and inspires children to want to write and take pride in their writing. We encourage children to be imaginative and provide them with essential skills in grammar, spelling, punctuation and composition that will be life-long. We support children to express their thoughts and ideas clearly and creatively through the written word. We aim to develop children into writers with an understanding of the writing process, including proof-reading and editing to enhance their work. We support children to be articulate and confident communicators who express themselves and enhance their learning when engaging in discussions. We aim to create a culture where children love to read and draw on this to develop their writing.
The teaching sequence for writing comprises the following;
The aim of the teaching sequence is to teach pupils how to write. Learning walls are used effectively to support the writing process and models for writing are evaluated as part of the sequence. It is the aim that pupils will complete at least one narrative and one non-fiction piece per half term. The teaching sequence for writing has provided a system that all teachers follow and all pupils can achieve success in writing. We use a range of media in our writing units including high quality texts and visual aids. Grammar is taught within context throughout the sequence. This robust sequence to the teaching of writing allows children to develop their oracy skills and widen their vocabulary choices, whilst developing their understanding of writerly choices. We ensure there are extended writing opportunities across the curriculum by planning in writing tasks throughout PKC topics, as well as final assessment pieces.
The impact of this rigorous approach is that children are engaged throughout writing lessons. Writing is developed from good ideas and is imaginative in use of ambitious vocabulary and figurative language. Children know more, remember more and have skills which equip them to progress from their starting points. Children will have strong writing skills that allow them to access the whole curriculum and transition into secondary schools with confidence. Writing is high quality and well presented in a range of ways. Children have a clear understanding of the process of writing which helps them make good progress. Communication skills are strengthened, and they can articulate themselves well. Children take extreme pride in their work.