At Our Lady of Lourdes, we have creative staff who have a real love of English and plan lessons which are stimulating, purposeful and fun for our pupils! The pupils are given a wealth of exciting opportunities to develop their reading, writing and speaking and listening skills in English lessons and across the curriculum where genuine links can be made. We place a great emphasis on the development of spoken and written English, with the teaching of reading as a major priority from the earliest years. Our aim is to foster the development of a literate, articulate child, who is able to approach both spoken and written forms of communication confidently. We highly value the vital role of parents/guardians in the partnership of developing all English skills. Children at Our Lady of Lourdes learn through speaking and listening and by encountering a range of situations, activities and audiences, which are designed to develop confidence and competence. Our reading activities build on the oral language experiences the children bring from home. They learn to read through stories and a particular effort is made to involve parents in this process. A broad range of rich, stimulating texts - both fiction and non-fiction - is available for pupils in the classrooms. Our pupils have regular opportunities to write for a variety of purposes and audiences. They will write individually, in pairs and in groups, discussing their work with their teacher and their peers. To stimulate children’s writing we use carefully selected stories, plays, poems and life experiences and they learn the drafting process, spelling patterns and grammatical terms in the context of discussion about their own writing. The Senior Leadership Team and English Subject Leaders regularly observe all classes throughout the school to ensure the quality of writing. All staff are involved in the book scrutiny process which ensures high levels of teaching and marking are maintained throughout the school, in addition to the sharing of high quality practice amongst the teaching staff. The introduction of visiting speakers, interactive whiteboards, iPads and computers have all had a positive impact on improving writing standards.
Here at Our Lady of Lourdes, we are all readers and writers. Our teaching of English is designed to instil in children a love of speaking, listening, reading and writing that will last them a lifetime. Giving pupils the key skills in English enables them to access material in all curriculum areas, and provides a foundation for their learning throughout their school career.
To achieve this, teachers are focussed on making English interesting and exciting, engaging the pupils with the joy and wonder of books and piquing their imagination and creativity. Through high quality teaching and inspiring activities, we foster a rich and varied love of literature from the outset, using captivating characters and settings to celebrate the beauty of diverse worlds – both real and imaginary. Through carefully planned whole class and group discussion we aim to master our critical understanding of English and encourage all pupils to develop their own viewpoint about literature and learning.
At Our Lady of Lourdes, English lessons develop pupils’ spoken language, reading, writing, grammar and vocabulary. We teach our pupils to speak clearly, to convey their ideas fluently and confidently and to ask questions. We know the value of excellent vocabulary and this is developed and practised across our curriculum.
Our pupils are encouraged to read for pleasure and to read widely through our reading scheme and in regular guided reading sessions. Our guided reading sessions cover a wide variety of both fiction and non-fiction books and help to advance the children’s comprehension skills. Parents/guardians are given reading guidance and clear expectations about the importance of reading at home.
We develop writing skills so that the majority of our pupils have the stamina and ability to write at the age-related expectation for their year group. To support children in moving towards independent writing we provide a wide range of activities including the use of modelled, shared and guided writing, peer assessment and discussion.
As we believe consistency and well-taught English is the bedrock of a valuable education, we ensure that the teaching of writing is purposeful, robust and shows clear progression for all children. In line with the new national curriculum, we ensure that each year group is teaching the explicit grammar, punctuation and spelling objectives required for that age group. As well as teaching the objectives, teachers are able to embed the skills throughout the year in cross-curricular writing opportunities and ensure that most children are achieving the objectives at the expected level and that some children can achieve at a greater depth standard. In this sense, assessment of writing is also more fluid as teachers can assess against a set framework. All year groups use the same format for assessing writing which have been produced in line with the end of Key Stage assessment frameworks as published by the Department for Education.
At Our Lady of Lourdes Primary School we follow the Oxford Reading Tree Reading Scheme. The books are colour banded and children are allocated an appropriate band depending on their ability to read words and comprehend the text they have read. This scheme starts in the Foundation Stage, continues in Key Stage 1 and again in Key Stage 2. This scheme is supplemented by other reading books to challenge the children and to develop their love of reading.
We are thrilled to be working with Beanstalk, a national charity which recruits and trains reading helpers to support children with their literacy skills.
Volunteers work with selected children two afternoons a week on a one-to-one basis.
For more information, or to find out about volunteering, visit their website www.beanstalkcharity.org.uk
Reading is an amazing way to fire your imagination and find out new things. Oxford Owl offers lots of free e-books online for you to read and enjoy.
Why not have a look for yourself? Just visit the Oxford Owl website and enjoy!
At our Lady of Lourdes Primary School in Key Stage 1, we follow the Letters and Sounds curriculum for phonics. This is taught in different phases and starts in the Foundation Stage and continues through to Key Stage 2 when required.
If you would like to help your child with their Phonics at home please see the support letter below.
Teachers use formative assessment in lessons and this informs their short term planning and helps them provide the best possible support for children.
Assessments take place half termly, with a summative grade given at the end of each term.
Monitoring in English includes: planning and book scrutinies, learning walks, pupil interviews and book talks. Information gathered is used to gain an accurate understanding of the quality of education in English.
To see how the age-related expectations are broken down by year group, download the Lancashire Key Learning Indicators of Performance (KLIPs) documents which are located in the side bar to the right of the page.
NB The underlined statements are considered as essential aspects for pupils to understand if the final year group/key stage expectations are to be met.
BOOKS OF THE MONTH
Here are the English Team's recommendations for reading for November.
We hope you enjoy them!
EYFS- How to Catch a Star
Once there was a boy, and that boy loved stars very much. So much that he decided to catch one of his very own. But how? It is enough to make a boy want to give up! Yet sometimes we discover things that aren't where, or what, we expect them to be.
KS1- The Boy Who Grew Dragons
When Tomas discovers a strange old tree at the bottom of his grandad's garden, he doesn't think much of it. But he takes the funny fruit from the tree back into the house - and gets the shock and delight of his life when a tiny dragon hatches! Year 2 may recognise this great read!
KS2- Swarm Rising
Co-written by astronaut Tim Peake, this pulsating middle grade sci-fi adventure finds humanity in danger from a supposedly benevolent alien hive mind and only Danny and his best friend Jamila can avert catastrophe!
English in Action!
At Our Lady of Lourdes, we love all aspects of English. Have a look at some of our wonderful photographs.