English

Focus: Writing, Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling

Intent:

At Christ Church Juniors, we recognise that English has a pre-eminent place in education and society, and that the skills of language are essential to participating fully as members of society.

Implementation:

An important aspect of learning to write well is learning how to use grammar, punctuation and spelling correctly. We use the ‘Spelling Shed’ website to teach children to spell; they also have access to this at home.

We teach grammar, punctuation and spelling within our English lessons (see attached progression document). We then embed this learning throughout other subjects, such as historical recounts, geographical comparison pieces, science experiment write-ups and other cross-curricular learning.

Impact: 

Our engaging cross-curricular lessons help pupils to foster a love of literacy and language and an enjoyment of learning. We challenge children of all abilities and ensure they make good progress in all areas of the English curriculum. They are encouraged to have a growth mind-set and to develop perseverance and resilience.

We celebrate pupil’s hard work, their success and most especially, grit. They are encouraged to revisit their work, make changes and develop their ideas further to ensure they achieve their very best. As a result, pupils demonstrate great pride in their work.

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Focus: Reading

Intent, Implementation & Impact

At our school, teachers read aloud to their classes every single day. We value reading aloud and recognise that sharing a text is a special time which must be guarded despite the time pressures of the curriculum.

At Christ Church, we use the Accelerated Reader program. Each child in the school has their own account so we may collate and monitor their reading progress throughout their time with us. We can identify pupils who have fallen or who are at risk of falling behind in their reading and interventions are put in place. We acknowledge that reading enjoyment and reading achievement are interdependent, so stringent monitoring is key to ensuring all our pupils can participate fully in the reading curriculum.

A key priority for our pupils is vocabulary development. Teachers use all available opportunities to clarify and extend pupils’ understanding of new words. Reading for pleasure sessions are a prime opportunity to do this but new subject vocabulary is also introduced in all subject lessons. We also stretch the children with a new word each day from ‘Vocabulary Ninja’.

We recognise the need to increase pupils’ reading stamina and their autonomy. Pupils are given opportunities to read silently in class during D.E.A.R time each day (Drop. Everything. And. Read). We also recognise the need for them to feel comfortable and cosy while they are reading and each year group has a dedicated reading area with comfy seating and cushions.

The school library is an amazing resource used by all classes, we are so lucky to have a talented and passionate librarian, Mrs Britnell, who helps children to find books whatever their interests. Our pupils are also involved in running the library: Junior Librarians are nominated and trained to help with restocking, cataloguing and running the library.

Each week, time is allocated for classes to visit the library and read in a ‘cosy corner’ or in other shared spaces for example the outdoor herb garden or the prayer space. Our pupils love reading together and they are often seen reading a big book with a friend.

All staff at Christ Church model that we are readers by sharing with pupils what we are currently reading. Teachers and other adults talk enthusiastically about reading and weave their love of reading into assemblies and presentations. Authors and poets are invited into school and work with year groups. Poetry is valued here and often features in our displays.

We encourage membership of the local library and good reading habits outside school time. To this end, we plan school  visits to our library and local book shops.

What can parents do at home?

To gain more from your child’s reading, here are 5 useful top tips:

  1. Explore it – read a section from a book together and think and ask questions about the following:
    1. Think about how it is written. What parts of this really stick in your mind? Which words and phrases do you like the best? What do you like about them? Do they look or sound interesting? Do they help you make a picture in your mind?
    2. What is happening in the extract? Who are the central characters? Can you summarise what you’ve read in a couple of sentences?
  2. Illustrate it – Create an illustration to represent the passage that has been read. If it is a picture book, what section of the text has the illustrator focused on?  Is there another section that can be illustrated?
  3. Talk about it – Use questioning about the characters, setting and key events to secure your child’s understanding of the text. For example,…
    1. How has the character been described? Would you use the same words to describe them or would you use different words?  Why would you change them?
    2. How has the setting been described? How does this help you to imagine the scene facing the characters?
    3. If you were going to describe a character or setting from your life, would you magpie some of these ideas? Why might you choose them or others?
  4. Imagine it – Ask questions that will deepen your child’s responses to the text, encouraging them to think beyond the words on the page and link it to their own knowledge.
    1. When do you think your book is set in time? How do you know this?
    2. Where do you think your book is set? How do you know?
    3. What might happen next? Can you make a prediction?
  5. Create it – Take an aspect that you know about the book, for example the location, and use this for creative activities. For example,
    1. If the book is in a certain place, can your child create a visitor’s guide?
    2. Choosing a word or phrase from the book, from this can your child write a different story with this as their starting point?
    3. Can your child recreate the scene in the book using junk modelling materials?

For more exciting activities to promote a love of reading at home, try these fantastic suggestions on the following link:

https://readforgood.org/reading-inspiration/

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Sponsored by the
Diocese of Canterbury
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Christ Church Junior school

London Road, Ramsgate. CT11 0ZZ

Opening Hours

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7:45am - 8:30am

Monday – Friday

8:50am - 3:05pm

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