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John Harrox Primary School John Harrox Primary School

John Harrox Primary School


English is taught in line with the requirements of the National Curriculum.

There are three areas of focus for the study of English at Key Stages 1 and 2. These are:

  • Speaking and Listening
  • Reading
  • Writing

Speaking and listening skills are of central importance to children’s development. Opportunities are provided for children to express and develop ideas, engage in discussion and exchange views sensitively, competently and coherently. Through exposure to a variety of activities and situations, children are encouraged to develop the skills to use speech appropriately, being able to adjust ways of speaking according to the occasion, and develop a growing ability to listen attentively. Speaking and listening skills are further reinforced through our school productions, through drama, presentations and public speaking opportunities.

The teaching of reading is at the core of our curriculum. We believe the ability to read is fundamental to many aspects of life; it is central to general academic progress and developing a wide-ranging understanding across the curriculum. Our main aim is to ensure that every child becomes a confident, fluent reader who develops a love of reading.  Additionally, we aim for every child to be able to ‘read to learn’.  All children will be exposed to a variety of literature, genres and authors and develop the self-awareness to understand the kind of reader they are. The sharing of stories is central to our provision throughout our school and children enjoy both reading and being read to as part of our daily provision.

Our reading curriculum aims to ensure pupils:

  • Will be inspired to have a love of reading as a pastime which will also provide an essential tool to succeed in all areas of life.
  • Read fluently, confidently and with good understanding
  • Read widely and often, for both pleasure and information recognising its value
  • Can read, understand and respond to a variety of text types
  • Acquire a wide vocabulary through shared and guided reading
  • Give children the confidence to read aloud and with clarity
  • Love, respect and appreciate books

The early teaching of reading focuses on the development of phonic knowledge, decoding skills and the speedy recognition of common words. We use the Read Write Inc Scheme to ensure a consistent, systematic and rigorous approach across key stage one. Comprehension skills are taught using the VIPERS approach (Vocabulary, Inference, Prediction, Explain, Retrieve, Summarise/Sequence).  Children are encouraged to read appropriate material at home. The school has a library containing fiction and non-fiction material, and the children are encouraged to use study skills to locate and retrieve information. Children may borrow books from the library to take home. Books relating to current topic work and some fiction books are displayed in classrooms.

We aim to ensure that all children become competent writers.  English will be taught in a daily discrete lesson for all pupils; however the teaching and development of writing skills will also be embedded in other areas of the curriculum.  By the time pupils leave the school, they will be expected to write clearly, accurately and coherently, for a variety of purposes and audiences, adapting their language and style as required. Both transcription skills and composition skills are equally important and will be taught effectively in a creative and engaging way. Children will be expected to take pride in their writing and present their work to a high standard.   Through linked reading activities, children will be encouraged to develop an author’s voice.

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