Stockham School English and Literacy Policy

Stockham School English and Literacy Policy
The study of English and Literacy develops children’s ability to listen, speak, read
and write for a wide range of purposes, so using language to learn and communicate
ideas, views and feelings. It enables children to express themselves creatively and
imaginatively, as they become enthusiastic and critical readers of stories, poetry and
drama, as well as non-fiction and media texts. Children gain an understanding of
how language works by looking at its patterns, structures and origins. Children use
their knowledge, skills and understanding in speaking and writing across a range of
Aims and Objectives
Through teaching children to use spoken and written language competently and
confidently staff at Stockham School aim to:
 encourage all children to develop an enjoyment of reading, writing, speaking
and listening;
 teach children how to craft language for particular effects, through an
understanding of how texts are created in relation to genre, purpose and
 provide interactive opportunities for children to practise using language in
relevant, ‘real life’ contexts;
 provide opportunities for children to communicate independent views and
opinions, respond imaginatively and express feelings through spoken and
written language;
 enable children to make critical responses about the language which they
read, view and hear in a variety of media;
 provide an integrated approach to reading and writing, speaking and listening.
 address the need to develop language skills in all curriculum subjects;
 recognise the language experiences of children at home and in the wider
 increase children’s understanding of how language is used in the world
beyond school.
Teaching and Learning Style
At Stockham School we use a variety of teaching and learning styles in English and
Literacy lessons, as recommended by the National Literacy Strategy. Our principal
aim is to develop children’s knowledge, skills and understanding in English. We do
this through regular lessons that consist of whole-class and group teaching. During
these lessons children usually experience a whole-class shared reading, writing,
speaking and listening or drama activity, and/or a whole-class focused phonic, word
or sentence activity, followed by a group, paired or independent activity and a whole
class session to review progress and learning. Children can work in either ability
groupings or mixed ability groups as decided by the teacher. However this structure
may vary in that it may contain only some of these elements or these elements in a
different order depending on how the teacher believes the learning objectives can be
achieved most effectively. Children have the opportunity to experience a wide range
of texts and use a range of resources. Teachers and children use ICT in English and
Literacy lessons where it enhances learning, for example drafting work and using
multimedia to study how words and images are combined to convey meaning.
Wherever possible we encourage children to use and apply their learning in other
areas of the curriculum and incorporate the teaching of Literacy within our topicbased approach to the curriculum.
The planning and teaching of the curriculum at Stockham School takes into account
the following statements which integrate the requirements of the revised National
Curriculum for English and the New National Literacy Framework:
Speaking and Listening
children should be taught how to speak confidently, clearly and audibly in a
wide range of contexts.
children should understand how to adapt their language, varying use and
register in relation to purpose and audience.
children should listen with concentration to a wide range of spoken language
in real contexts and be able to identify the main points of what they have
children should participate in pair/group discussions, debates and individual
children should have opportunities to reflect on their own and each other’s
use of language.
drama strategies should be used to provide inter-active opportunities for
developing spoken language.
children should have opportunities to listen to stories, poetry and novels as
well as non-fiction texts.
children should be encouraged to read for pleasure as well as to develop
their research and study skills.
children should read a wide range of fiction and non-fiction, including media
and ICT texts and texts from a variety of cultures and traditions.
children should be taught to be discriminating readers, be able to understand
layers of meaning and make a critical response to what they read.
children should explore meaning of text using drama strategies.
children should be able to read on-screen texts.
teachers should demonstrate their understanding of the skills and strategies
involved in teaching reading to enable pupils to read accurately for meaning
and pleasure; using methods and strategies such as shared, guided and
independent reading and systematic phonics teaching to enable children to
become confident, independent readers.
reading for information and other purposes should be reinforced in other
curriculum subjects.
children should be given opportunities to explore the links between reading
and writing.
writing should be seen as an enjoyable activity in itself and children should
be able to recognise its value.
children should be encouraged to write with commitment and vitality and
develop independent, distinctive and original styles.
children should be taught to write fluently and accurately, understanding
how to use the main rules and conventions of written English.
handwriting and spelling are both addressed within the regular Literacy
lessons and also taught directly in separate focussed sessions. They are
also continually addressed through all writing activities.
children should write for a range of purpose:- to communicate to others,
create imaginary worlds, explore and describe experiences, organise and
explain information, imagine and explore feelings and ideas, use language
creatively to engage a reader, inform and explain, to persuade and present
children should write in a variety of forms, e.g. narrative, letter, poems,
children should be able to choose form and content to suit purpose and
children should compose both on paper and on computer screen, using
different formats and layout to present work.
children should discuss and respond critically to their own and other
children’s writing, analyse strengths and weaknesses, make improvements
at the formative stage.
children should use planning and re-drafting to improve and develop
content, style and accuracy of writing.
teachers should demonstrate their understanding of the skills and strategies
involved in teaching writing; using methods and strategies such as shared,
guided and independent writing.
children should be given opportunities to write at length.
The curriculum should provide opportunities for children to:
 create, adapt and sustain different roles individually and in groups;
 explore meanings of texts – characters, actions, themes, emotions and ideas;
 evaluate their own and each other’s contribution and effectiveness of
 experience drama for a sense of achievement, enjoyment and to develop selfesteem;
 deepen children’s understanding of other curricular areas.
There are children of differing abilities in all classes at Stockham School. We
recognise this fact and provide suitable learning opportunities for all children by
matching the challenge of the task to the ability of the child. We achieve this through
a range of strategies. In some lessons we do it through differentiated group work,
while in other lessons we ask children to work from the same starting point before
moving on to develop their ideas to their own ability and to achieve their individual
potential. We use classroom assistants and a range of resources in various ways to
support some children and to extend others, enabling work to be matched to the
needs of the individuals.
English and Literacy Curriculum Planning
English and Literacy is a core subject in the National Curriculum. We use the New
National Literacy Framework as the basis for implementing the statutory
requirements. We carry out the curriculum planning in English and Literacy in three
phases (long-term, medium term and short term). The New National Literacy
Framework for Teaching details what we teach in the long term. We also use the
New National Literacy Framework unit plans for each year group as the basis for our
medium term planning. Class teachers complete short-term plan for the teaching of
English and Literacy. This details the specific learning objectives for the unit and
gives details of how the lessons are to be taught. It also includes details of what
each group of children will be learning and which specific activities they will be
participating in to achieve this learning. Cross-curricular links to themes are made
when possible and many Literacy objectives are also taught throughout the topic
The Foundation Stage
We teach English and Literacy in the Foundation Stage class as an integral part of
the school’s work. The format for these lessons is similar to that used in the rest of
the school; however each section of this lesson is usually spread across the day
rather than taught in direct succession to each other. In relation to the Foundation
Stage of the National Curriculum, we relate the English and Literacy aspects of the
children’s work to the objectives set out in the Early Learning Goals which underpin
the curriculum planning for children aged three to five. We give all children the
opportunity to talk and communicate in a widening range of situations, to respond to
adults and to each other, to listen carefully, and to practise and extend their range of
vocabulary and communication skills. They have the opportunity to explore, enjoy,
learn about and use words and texts in a range of situations. The children participate
in a whole class daily phonics session which is planned and taught in relation to the
phonics programmer Letters and Sounds. In order to prepare the children for
Literacy lessons in Year One towards the end of the Foundation stage year English
and Literacy lessons are developed and extended to begin to take the format of a
more formal lesson.
Teaching English and Literacy to children with special needs
At Stockham School we teach English and Literacy to all children, whatever their
ability. English forms part of the broad and balanced education we provide for all
children. Teachers provide learning opportunities matched to the needs of the
children with learning difficulties. Work in English and Literacy takes into account the
targets set for individual children in their Individual Educations Plans (IEPs).
Teachers provide help with communication and literacy through:
 using texts at an appropriate level that children can read and understand;
 using visual and written materials in different formats;
 using ICT, other technological aids and taped materials;
 planning for teaching assistants to support small groups, pairs or individual
children with special educational needs;
 using alternative communication such as signs and symbols in rare cases
when necessary.
Contribution of English and Literacy to teaching in other
curriculum areas
The skills that children develop in English and Literacy are linked to and applied in,
every subject of our curriculum. The children’s skills in reading, writing, speaking and
listening enable them to communicate and express themselves in all areas of their
work in school. These language skills are also developed further through their
continual use in all curriculum areas.
Information and Communication Technology (ICT)
The use of ICT enables children to use and apply their developing skills in English in
a variety of ways. It is an important means of developing language use in the context
of the modern world and is used to support pupil learning in a variety of ways.
Younger children use ICT as a source of information and as a way of enabling them
to present their completed work effectively. Older children also use ICT and the
Internet to search for information or to design and draft work. All children have
opportunities to compose directly on the screen and to read information e.g. from
CD-ROMS, Internet and Emails. Children are taught to use word processing
techniques to develop writing skills, to check for written accuracy using grammar and
spellcheckers and to use a range of fonts and layout presentation features in relation
to audience and purpose.
Assessment and Recording
Teachers assess children’s work in English and Literacy in three phases. The shortterm assessments that teachers make as part of every lesson help teachers to adjust
their daily plans. Some of these assessments are recorded as evaluations on the
teacher’s short term plans. Teachers make these short-term assessments closely to
the teaching objectives. They use medium-term assessments to measure progress
against the key objectives once a term and these are used to inform planning for the
next units of work. Teachers make long-term assessments towards the end of the
school year and they use these to assess progress against school and national
targets. With the help of these long-term assessments, teachers are able to set
targets for the next school year and summarise the progress of each child before
writing the children’s home/school reports. These long-term assessments are made
using teacher assessments and end-of-year tests. Children undertake the national
tests at the end of Year 2 and Year 6 plus the optional national tests at the end of
Years 3,4, and 5. In Year 1 annual assessments of children’s progress are made
using the level descriptions of the National Curriculum and in the Foundation Stage
assessments are made continually throughout the year in the form of the Foundation
Stage Profile and the Oxfordshire Foundation Stage Child Profile.
Teachers use the Oxfordshire Pupil Record to assess children’s reading, writing,
speaking and listening and drama in relation to National Curriculum Levels. These
are used to show individuals’ and classes’ progress and achievement and are
ongoing records which teachers use to inform their planning. These assessments
are given to the next class teacher at the end of each academic year.
Assessment is an integral part of teaching and learning and children should be
actively involved through an explicit understanding of the learning objectives, selfevaluation and target setting for personal improvement.
There is a range of resources to support the teaching of English across the school.
All classes have a selection of fiction texts and a range of age-appropriate small
apparatus. Each class has a set of age appropriate dictionaries and junior classes
have thesauruses. Teachers ensure a selection of non-fiction books related to
current topics and interests are selected from the library, kept in their classroom and
made available to the children at all times. We have a school library containing a
range of non-fiction books to support children’s individual research. Materials are
selected carefully to ensure no discrimination. Texts are chosen to develop fluency,
accuracy, understanding and pleasure in reading and we provide texts from a range
of cultures which are free from discrimination and stereotyping.
Monitoring and Review
Monitoring of the standards of the children’s work and of the quality of teaching in
English and Literacy including equal opportunities is the responsibility of the English
co-ordinator. The work of the co-ordinator also involves supporting colleagues in the
teaching of English and Literacy, being informed about current developments in the
subject and providing a strategic lead and direction for the subject in the school. The
co-ordinator reviews samples of children’s work and samples of teacher’s planning
and also undertakes lesson observations of English and Literacy teaching across the
Developing Literacy at Home
At Stockham School we recognise that the role of the family is central in supporting
the children’s language development as a speaker, reader and writer. We have a
homework policy which details all aspects of Literacy homework for each year group.
Signed (Headteacher)……………………………………………………………………..
Signed (Chair of Governors)………………………………………………………………