Teaching & Learning

English

English Department

Our aim: To contribute to students’ developing independence by supporting and furthering the communication, language and literacy of all students as appropriate to the individual child.

English in Primary:

      Primary: In EYFS, students are taught together by a class teacher. In Key stages 1 and 2, students are taught by a Primary teacher in ability groups within their key stage.  All students working at appropriate levels have discrete phonics (see Teaching of Phonics section below) or reading lessons which are identified on the school timetable.  Students also have literacy skills embedded into other topic work.  Students that require extra support for communication, have support from the CHATA department/Communication teacher either within lessons or are withdrawn for SLT sessions. 

Students who are working within the National Curriculum, are taught the matters, skills and processes from the English National Curriculum (September 2013) using a stimulating cross-curricular theme e.g. Things that go bang.  Students who are not working at their typical year group level will be taught the matters, skills and processes from the NC at an appropriate level but using age appropriate materials.  Students who are working at appropriate levels are entered for SATs exams.

Students who are working within the P levels, are taught the skills to move through the P levels through a curriculum based on stimulating cross-curricular themes.  This is done through the IMPACTS curriculum for students working at the lower end of the P levels.  Students in the IMPACTS programme are taught literacy by a trained teacher with support from the English LDL if required.

English in Secondary:

Key Stage 3: Students are grouped into 3 ability groups within this key stage for all subjects.  English is taught by a specialist secondary English teacher or a trained English HLTA.  Students are supported where necessary by an English TA and SSAs.  The CHATA team support the learning of students with SLD within some lessons.  Students have 4x 1 hour English lessons per week.  One of these lessons is a designated reading or skills lesson.

Students who are working within National Curriculum levels, are taught the matters, skills and processes from the English National Curriculum (September 2013) using a termly topic e.g. reading and engaging with world literature and refugee poetry.  Students who are not working at their typical year group level will be taught the matters, skills and processes from the NC at an appropriate level but using age appropriate materials. 

Students who are working within the P levels, are taught the skills to move through the P levels through a termly thematic topic.  These topics are taught across a number of subject areas in order to consolidate learning of key words and concepts.  This is done through the IMPACTS curriculum for students working at the lower end of the P levels. Students in the IMPACTS programme are taught literacy by a trained teacher with support from the English Leader if required.

Key Stage 4: Students are grouped into ability groups within this key stage for all subjects.  English is taught by a specialist secondary English teacher or a trained English HLTA.  Students are supported where necessary by an English TA and SSAs.  The CHATA team support the learning of students with SLD within some lessons.  Students have 3 x 1 hour English lessons per week.  One of these lessons is a designated reading or skills lesson.  The large majority of students begin an accredited course or courses in Key Stage 4.  These include GCSE English, GCSE Media Studies, Entry Pathways in Additional English and Personal Progress.

Key Stage 5: Students are grouped into ability groups within this key stage for all subjects.  English is taught by a specialist secondary English teacher or a trained English HLTA.  Students are supported where necessary by an English TA and SSAs.  The CHATA team support the learning of students with SLD within some lessons.  Students have 3 x 1 hour English lessons per week.  One of these lessons is a designated reading or skills lesson except for GCSE students. The large majority of students begin or continue to take an accredited course or courses in Key Stage 5.  These include GCSE English, GCSE Media Studies, IGCSE English, Entry Pathways in Additional English and Personal Progress.

KS3-5 ERIC Sessions: Students in all KS3-5 classes have ERIC (Everybody Reads in Class) sessions on a rotating basis. ERIC is held in a designated slot between 1.45 and 2.10pm 2-3 times per week.  Students are required to read at an appropriate level e.g. listening to stories that they have chosen, reading symbol supported books with adult support, reading aloud to an adult or reading silently.  Students who are using the Accelerated Reader software are able to access quizzes during these sessions when they have completed a book.  Information from AR is monitored by the English Leader.  Students are also able to obtain new reading material in these sessions by having open access to the English classrooms’ bookshelves.

Teaching of Phonics

Teaching of synthetic phonics is carried out using Read Write Inc (RWInc.). Phonics programme across the Primary phase and this is continued in the Secondary phase when required.  All Primary teachers are trained to deliver the programme as well as the Head of English, English HLTA and English TAs.

Students in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) are taught phonics using the RWInc. Programme which may be supplemented with other resources to allow for the extra time and activity needed by some students to consolidate sounds and concepts.

On leaving EYFS, many students will need to continue to be taught phonics systematically and will require daily input.  Because of the individual needs of students at this point, it is likely that most students will be taught individually by trained adults to ensure maximum progress.  The progress of individual students will be monitored by Head of English with support from the Reading TA and Alison Radlett, EYFS teacher.

Students who are working at P4 or below after EYFS are likely to be placed into the IMPACTS class.  This class does not teach phonics on a daily basis as it is felt that students are not yet ready to learn phonics and their communication needs are their top priority.  These students are still part of a literacy-rich environment where they regularly experience books, print, sounds and words.  If, however, a student is identified as being ready to learn phonics, this can be done on an individual basis.

Students who require phonics input in Years 5 and 6 can use either the RWInc phonics book or the RWInc. Fresh Start modules according to the teacher’s discretion.

Students entering KS3 who require phonics input, will be given daily 1:1 or small group phonics input using the RWInc. Fresh Start modules.  Fresh Start can be continued into KS4 and 5 on an individual basis.

 

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