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English

Reading

At Holy Trinity our ultimate goal of reading is comprehension and for pupils to develop a rich vocabulary. 

Our aims are that all children

  • read independently,
  • develop understanding of what they have read
  • are engaged and motivated to read. 
  • Early Reading and Phonics -  Teachers follow Holy Trinity’s systematic phonics programme of study for Reception – Year 2.  It is broadly based on the Letters and Sounds programme.  Phonics is at the heart of teaching children to become independent readers.  Children are explicitly taught the sounds related to each letter or combination of letters and learn how to apply this knowledge when reading.  Both the reading and spelling of tricky or exception words are also taught so that children are encouraged to recognise these words on sight. 
  • Organisation Reading is taught in English lessons as well as group guided reading sessions which take place daily.   These sessions provide children with access to a range of high quality texts. Teachers work with each group weekly on texts suitable for the reading skills of the children.  In guided reading sessions we use a combination of Project X, Oxford Reading Tree and Accelerated Reading books along with a computing programme Active Learn. Reading diaries are used to set weekly homework at an appropriate level. As the level of comprehension deepens, written responses are increasingly demanding. Each child is set reading targets every half term. Children are given the opportunity to choose their own books to read independently from the inviting book corner in every classroom at least once a week. Teachers read aloud to the class regularly in our popular ‘reading enrichment’ sessions where love of reading and shared enjoyment is evident through the sharing of high quality texts of various styles.  
  • Accelerated Reader - At Holy Trinity we are using a  computer programme called Accelerated Reader (AR) that helps teachers to manage and monitor children’s independent reading practice. Pupils picks a book at his/her own level and reads it at his/her own pace. When finished, the pupil takes a short quiz on the computer - passing the quiz is an indication that they have understood what has been read. AR gives both children and teachers feedback based on the quiz results which the teacher then uses to help the child set targets and ongoing reading practice.  

Please read this prompt book to help you with ideas to support your child when reading with them. Click here - Reading  

 

Writing

Children learn how to communicate effectively in a wide range of writing styles. We ensure the children have exciting and stimulating things to write about in different aspects of our curriculum.  We make sure they are taught the skills necessary but also ensure they are experts in a subject before writing so everyone has ‘something to say’ and know ‘how to say it’.

Children are exposed to a range of different texts, videos and experiences to help them write purposeful, relevant pieces of work.  They learn how to organise their own work so it suits the purpose and will be aware of who will be reading their work.

Children are given personal writing targets and are taught to edit and improve their writing and do so regularly. 

They respond to the school’s marking codes and use blue pen to improve their work from KS2 onwards. All pupils are expected to respond to next steps and spelling corrections. The independence and responsibility shown in this ability to edit and improve their work is emphasised and celebrated throughout the school and results in children becoming highly independent, effective and reflective writers. 

When pupils have finished their editing, they write up their final draft in their Super Writing Books allowing them to practise their handwriting and presentation skills.

Grammar and Punctuation

Children are taught about the way language works through their reading and writing and discuss the differences in spoken language and the written word. Every week there is a grammar focus which is taught explicitly in a Grammar lesson and reinforced throughout the week's Literacy lessons. Specific grammar and punctuation content is assigned to particular year groups and matches the national curriculum expectations from 2014. 

Spelling

Children learn a range of different spelling patterns set out in our Phonics and Spelling programmes. Alongside a structured programme of spelling patterns and rules we teach children to read and spell exception or tricky words in each year group.  Children are expected to learn particular spellings identified in their own work and from Year 2 keep an individual spelling record of words they need to learn to spell correctly. Children are taught to be independent in practising their own ways to help them learn and remember new or tricky spellings.  This guide and techniques are shared regularly. Pupils are encouraged to develop a wide vocabulary through various initiatives such as Word of the Week, topic vocabulary list and exposure to the Classics.

Handwriting

At Holy Trinity, we teach the children to write in the school handwriting style - Nelson Font.  In Early Years the handwriting rhymes help children with the formation and orientation of their letters.  Teaching of joining is begun in Year 2. When children are able join accurately and their writing is consistent in size they will be awarded with their handwriting license which allows them to write in pen. 

Spoken Language

The ability to convey meaning effectively and concisely and to respond to others appropriately is promoted in all classrooms. We support our children to become expressive, articulate young people. Every week pupils use different drama techniques in their literacy lessons to develop their ideas for writing.‚Äč

Drama provides many opportunities for the children to express themselves and to demonstrate understanding of character, conflict and emotion and therefore is used effectively in many areas of the curriculum.