Our Vision for English
English has an unparalleled place in education and in society; it’s at the heart of all learning and the key to future success. To become successful learners and thrive in later life, a high quality education in English is crucial.
The children of Hopton Church of England Primary Academy are driven by the Academy’s Christian vision and in order to meet the academic and spiritual needs of all, the Hopton curriculum has been designed to ensure that the Academy is a place where all can flourish.
We strive to ensure that all pupils can speak, read and write fluently. Through reading in particular, pupils have the opportunity to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually which will help them to become responsible citizens and participate fully as members of society.
Our Aims for English
At Hopton CE Primary Academy we aim to inspire our pupils to get lost in reading and express themselves through writing. As a school, our goal is to enable learners to be confident in their phonic knowledge which will allow their reading to progress year by year. In addition to this, we strive for pupils to develop a love of books and reading. In conjunction with reading, we facilitate a curriculum which enables our writers to express themselves through words in different subjects and challenges pupils to extend their ideas through self and peer editing. Our school’s ambition is to not only fuel a love for the English language but to prepare our students for their next stage of learning after they leave our school.
We aim for pupils at Hopton CE Primary Academy to leave Year 6:
- reading and writing with confidence, fluency and understanding, using a range of independent strategies to self-monitor and correct;
- with a love of reading and a desire to read for enjoyment;
- with an interest in words and their meanings; developing a growing vocabulary in spoken and written forms;
- understanding a range of text types, media types and genres;
- able to write in a variety of styles and forms appropriate to the situation;
- using their developing imagination, inventiveness and critical awareness; and
- with a suitable technical vocabulary to articulate their responses.
At Hopton we deliver our Reading Curriculum through two programmes – Read Write Inc. and Accelerated Reader.
In Reception, pupils have daily phonics lessons, using the Read Write Inc. programme. Cross-curricular planning in Reception is based around core texts and pupils develop their literacy, comprehension and vocabulary skills through daily input sessions. Pupils have opportunities to develop their communication, language and literacy skills on a daily basis in both adult led and child initiated activities.
In Key Stage 1 English lessons follow the Read Write Inc. programme, with daily phonics, reading and writing sessions. Students are assessed, approximately every six weeks, to ensure that they are working at the appropriate level to embed and stretch their skills.
Read Write Inc.
Read Write Inc. is a whole-school approach to teaching literacy for children aged 4 to 9 that creates fluent readers, confident speakers and willing writers. Throughout the program, children learn and apply the 150+ graphemes that represent 44 speech sounds in the English language. Pupils read at least one decodable book, closely matched to reading abilities, per week and these focus on improving accuracy, fluency and comprehension.
There are five core principles to teaching and learning:
Purpose: Each activity has a very clear purpose and this is shared with pupils at the beginning of each session so that they know the one thing they should be thinking about.
Passion: As staff we are passionate about their teaching and the benefits of Read Write Inc. We love teaching the sessions and this enthusiasm engages our pupils.
Pace: No time is wasted during teaching sessions. Pupils are active and involved in a fun and creative way. The aim is for pupils to quickly embed and practice their reading skills.
Participation: We ensure that each pupil participates in every part of the lesson as partner work is fundamental to learning.
Praise: We praise effort and progress.
Pupils that complete the Read Write Inc. programme advance to class-based literacy lessons; Jane Considine’s The Write Stuff.
In KS1 and KS2 we have a whole class approach to Guided Reading. It is structured so that each day of the week focuses on a different aspect of the reading curriculum.
To support our pupils in developing their reading and comprehension skills, we use Accelerated Reader. Accelerated Reader (or ‘AR’) is a reading programme that monitors pupils reading growth and promotes both an enthusiasm for reading and an increased understanding of what they have read.
The children are expected to have their current Accelerated reading books in school as there are opportunities for independent reading during the school day. Pupils in KS2 when independent reading will enter what they have read into their Reading Record book. It is expected that teachers will provide daily opportunities for independent reading.
Each class has a daily story time to help develop a love of reading, improve information processing skills, vocabulary and comprehension.
Pupils in EYFS are encouraged to give meaning to their marks as they write, draw and paint. They are provided with a range of opportunities to develop through writing for different purposes and about things that interest them.
At Hopton, literacy skills are developed and applied across the curriculum. Pupils take part in regular sessions to build skills and knowledge. These sessions focus on spelling, punctuation, grammar and handwriting. They also concentrate on the features of particular text types.
Pupils who have completed the RWI programme put this knowledge into practice and consolidated their skills during writing sessions, both within English lessons and across the wider curriculum. Writing is taught using Jane Considine’s The Write Stuff.
At Hopton we use the Jane Considine approach to teaching and learning in our English lessons. The approach engages children and broadens their thinking through experiences; these may include drama, texts, visual media, expert visitors or excursions. Daily sessions involve time for thinking and time for writing; teachers ensure children are continuously reminded of the three zones of writing (ideas, grammar and techniques) through the writing rainbow.
To ensure understanding, these lessons allow time for explanation, clear modelling, scaffolding and independent writing, eventually building to a learner written, structured and cohesive text. In following this approach, children learn to ‘sentence stack’ from excellent examples modelled to exemplify particular features. We celebrate children’s ‘sentence stacking’ daily by creating a whole class example through which every child contributes. English lessons are enriched with vocabulary, giving children the tools to become better conversationalists therefore creating descriptive, thought-provoking writers.
Read Write Inc. spelling is for children in Years 2 to 6 who have completed Read Write Inc. Phonics and for children who have met the English National Curriculum expectations for reading in Year 2. Spelling is taught cumulatively and systematically, with deliberate, focused practice. Constant revision and practice are key to children’s success.
Children learn the routines and behaviours necessary for each activity, and practise these until they use them automatically. This allows them to focus on what matters most – learning to spell. It makes sense of the most complex alphabetic code in the world, with its 150 spellings of 44 speech sounds.
The spelling programme:
- builds upon teaching strategies and spelling activities from Read Write Inc. Phonics.
- is organised in daily, 15-minute well-paced lessons
- provides plenty of writing practice, with a clear record of children’s progress
The programme also makes learning to spell enjoyable for children. Aliens from a spelling planet (via OUP online subscription) introduce spelling rules and concepts.
The programme’s core activities teach:
- alternative spellings of vowels
- alternative spellings of consonants
- the impact of adding prefixes and suffixes to root words
- how to spell plural nouns
- ‘silent’ letters
- unusual letter strings
- word families.
Reading at Home
Please explore the links below to get access to e-books and book videos that you can enjoy from the comfort of your home!
Narrated Book Videos
E-Book/Phonics Access Early Years and KS1