Our curriculum is structured on books and texts. We weave a range of age appropriate texts into all our themes and subjects to promote a love of books and reading but also to ensure children are continually delving into high quality texts. There is a good balance of fiction and non-fiction texts throughout the term so children are exposed to a range of genres. This increases their knowledge and understanding of vocabulary and the structure and grammar of writing. It also increases their knowledge and understanding of the world they live in as it feeds their imagination. At SBS we teach the skills of reading explicitly through class, group and individual work. This is also supported by our teaching of phonics using the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds scheme. Whole class reading sessions happen regularly throughout the week where the teacher models skills as texts are read and studied. All classes use the VIPERS reading prompts to support children in comprehension work. Sessions are structured into three parts – including a vocabulary focus, a summary or sequencing activity and one other VIPERS skill (inference, prediction, explanation, retrieval). The VIPERS link directly with the reading content domains found in the National Curriculum Test Framework documents. Group reading practice sessions happen three times per week in Reception and Year 1 in line with our Phonics programme. There is a different focus for each session – decoding, prosody and comprehension.
Our English Writing curriculum weaves explicitly with reading in order to expose the children to a wide range of quality texts and resources which inspire and motivates them as writers. A range of quality texts are used as exemplars to provide a structure to build teaching and learning upon. Through the texts chosen we engage our children in distinctive stages of writing; planning, drafting, editing and publishing; teaching and modelling the skills needed to effectively accomplish each. Modelled, shared and guided writing opportunities are utilised to demonstrate and develop grammar, punctuation and writing skills. Opportunities for independent cross curricular writing are also incorporated to build the children's ability to communicate in writing for a wide range of audiences and purposes. This allows the children opportunities to adapt language and style accordingly but most importantly ensures they are invested within their own writing as there is a defined reason to write. Handwriting is taught in short sessions throughout the week. Children learn the correct letter formation and joining is encouraged from Year 2 once children are confidently forming letters. In upper Key Stage 2, children are able to use a pen once they are able to join letters neatly and legibly.