Our English curriculum at Sudbourne aims to immerse children into a literary world filled with meaningful and authentic contexts for learning. Children will experience rich reading and writing environments, which promote an absolute love of learning so that children become life-long readers and writers.
Reading at Sudbourne
Our reading approach at Sudbourne focuses on developing learning behaviours that up level children’s discussions and encourage them to become independent learners. These learning behaviours include: being supportive and actively listening to others, discussing and explaining ideas and taking responsibility for their own and others children’s learning.
During guided reading lessons, children are exposed to high-quality, diverse texts which are read by the teacher and by pupils. Our weekly structure teaches children to not just read, but to understand what they are reading using 7 key reading skills and language stems. Our lessons aim to foster reading for pleasure and enjoyment of reading with others.
- Asking questions
- Making connections
In KS1, children are introduced to just 3 key skills: prediction, retrieval and basic inference. These are the three simplest skills which are introduced weekly using a core text. By the end of KS1, they should be confident in using these skills when reading texts at their level.
By the end of KS2, children should be confident in all of the above reading skills. In Year 5/6 in particular, they should be able to answer more complex inference questions which require them to make their point, give evidence to support it and explain further (P.E.E).
By the end of Year 1/2 pupils should be able to:
- form lowercase and capital letters correctly, using the correct pencil grip
- write golden sentences (capital letters, full stops, question marks finger spaces) which include appropriate adjectives and conjunctions
- begin writing using pre-cursive joins
- write and spell words with prefixes and suffixes
- use subheadings and heading appropriately in non-fiction writing
By the end of Year 3/4 pupils should be able write using:
- multi-clausal sentences and a range of conjunctions
- write coherently using paragraphs
- a range of sentence types
- a range of fronted adverbials, commas for lists, direct and indirect speech
- a range of sentence starters
- similes, alliteration, metaphors
By the end of Year 5/6 pupils should be able write using:
- hyphenated adjectives
- figurative language (personification, onomatopoeia)
- emotive language
- parenthesis/dashes to separate clauses
- a storyteller’s tone
- a range of punctuation
Spelling with Spelling Shed
At Sudbourne, we are aware of the need to spell quickly and accurately. We believe it is crucial that spelling is actively taught, as well as tested on a weekly basis. We have chosen to deliver our spelling lessons via a platform called ‘Spelling Shed’, which is a scheme that is based on the following principles:
- repeated practice
- short-term retrieval
- small-step goal achievement
- technology-driven games
As we know, memory is vital when learning spellings and therefore, each lesson sequence is planned to systematically build upon acquired knowledge. Pupils continue to build on the firm foundations built whilst studying phonics by exploring orthography. This is how patterns of letters are used to make certain spoken sounds in a language. During each spelling lesson, children also study morphology, which is the study of words; word parts; their meanings and how this affects spelling. Finally, most lessons in the scheme include an etymology element that allows us to teach the children about the origin of the words that they are learning about. We believe teaching children spellings using these particular teaching strategies is key to an improvement of spelling across all key stages.
Each term, children are carefully assessed to ensure they are being taught the correct spellings for their attainment level. If a child is working behind their year group level, they will receive a carefully selected set of spelling words to guarantee the gap in their learning is narrowed as much as possible.
Children who receive support from our literacy specialist have a weekly targeted spelling intervention. This means they focus on a specific group of words for a longer period of time. These words are also added to the ‘Spelling Shed’ platform to ensure they are also practising these words weekly using technology-driven games.
Early Reading with Read Write Inc
At Sudbourne, we understand the fundamental importance of early reading and ensuring that all children are able to read fluently and accurately. A vital element of this is the early and successful teaching of phonics. We have chosen to use the ‘Read, Write Inc’ (RWI) phonics programme as it gives all children the opportunity to learn how to read fluently, and at a good speed. Below are the 5 principles of RWI lesson:
- Purpose—our teachers know the purpose of every activity and share it with the children, so they know one thing they should be thinking about.
- Participation— every child participates. Partner work is fundamental to learning.
- Praise—children are praised continuously for effort—not ability.
- Pace—teachers teach at an effective pace; every moment is devoted to teaching and learning.
- Passion—our teachers are passionate about what they are teaching so children are always engaged.
Read Write Inc teaches children the sounds in English, the letters that represent them and how to form the letters when writing. RWI includes reading books that are written using only the letters they have learnt at each level (and a small number of separately taught tricky words). It is designed to help children to learn to read effortlessly so that they can put all their energy into comprehending what they read. It also allows them to spell effortlessly so that they can put all their energy into composing what they write.
By the end of the RWI phonics programme, children will be able to confidently read set 3 sound words - including nonsense words - independently. They also will be able to read speedily (80-90+ words per minute) with the expectation that they read with intonation, which demonstrates good comprehension skills.