English at Canon Johnson
The overarching aim for English in the national curriculum is to promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment. The national curriculum for English aims to ensure that all pupils:
- read easily, fluently and with good understanding
- develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information
- acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language
- appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
- write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences
- use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas
- are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.
Writing at Canon Johnson:
Talk for Writing
Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 (autumn term) use the Talk for Writing approach to enhance and supplement their teaching of RWInc. Talk for Writing is an approach to teaching writing that encompasses a three-stage pedagogy: ‘imitation’ (where pupils learn and internalise texts, to identify transferable ideas and structures), ‘innovation’ (where pupils use these ideas and structures to co-construct new versions with their teachers), and ‘invention’ (where teachers help pupils to create original texts independently). These stages aim to improve writing ability by giving pupils an understanding of the structure and elements of written language.
Literacy and Language/additional writing opportunities
The Literacy and Language scheme then follows on from RWInc*. This complete literacy programme for fluent readers from Year 2 (spring ‘1*) through to Year 6, teaches children to read, write and discuss texts with maturity.
The stories and non-fiction texts are written by well-known authors to engage children in studying complex, challenging whole texts.
At Canon Johnson, we supplement these writing opportunities further with an additional weekly extended write (this begins in spring ‘1 of Year 2) which is focused upon utilising wider curriculum links and experiences to ensure children have the opportunity to engage in writing across the curriculum. We advocate Michael Tidd’s approach and focus on ensuring coverage of the ‘4 writing purposes’ to ensure children are immersed and exposed to a range of genres and understand the importance of writing for a specific audience.
Read Write Inc. Spelling is for children in Year 2 (ideally from spring ‘1 when they are confident, fluent readers and transition to L and L*) through to Year 6.
Although the teaching of phoneme-grapheme correspondence underpins this programme, it also develops children’s knowledge of word families, how prefixes and suffixes impact upon root words, and provides mnemonics to remember the trickiest spellings.
The teaching revolves around instruction (with the help of online alien characters), partner and group work, and competitive group challenges that help children commit new words to memory.