Our Vision Intent
At St Agnes, we aim to offer a lifelong passion for reading, writing, speaking and listening where English is at the helm of our topic-based curriculum. By offering a broad and balanced topic-based curriculum, Speaking, Listening, Reading and Writing are integrated in a creative and inspiring programme, which enables all our children to be submerged in a language rich environment. Our children are encouraged to read a variety of genres; they have access to a range of reading materials in their language rich classrooms where we have created a reading rich environment. Due to the high quality resources on offer and the motivational learning environments, our children will become capable writers by being given exciting, inspiring and original materials linked through a topic-based curriculum that supports their learning but also challenges them. This encouragement will enable them to become confident, capable and enthusiastic writers. They will reflect on their own and others writing through their growing green comments and fix-it time and have an understanding that writing has real purpose through programmes such as IPEELL. They will take responsibility for their own learning including self-monitoring and correcting. We intend that our pupils will be both independent and reflective readers who can read fluently and for meaning. The children will use a variety of reading skills to enable them to access all other areas of learning. Children will leave St Agnes reading, writing, speaking and listening with confidence, fluency and understanding using a range of strategies to take responsibility for their own learning. Through a variety of topics, vocabulary will be stretched and the importance of suitable and technical vocabulary encouraged.
Reading is explicitly taught every day throughout school and each group of children have time with the teacher, in a Guided Reading session. Vulnerable groups are highlighted and our high quality teaching assistants and volunteers are used to support these groups further to aid progression and ensure that specific year group skills are secure. In EYFS and KS1 Guided Reading is planned in to the day so that as well as Phonics and 1:1 reading, children are given Guided Reading sessions with the class teacher weekly. We provide appropriate book banded texts and suitable resources to support and enhance lessons. With a structured timetable of learning tasks being rotated throughout the week, children are not only learning comprehension skills but also independence, a love of wider reading and exposure to rich vocabulary, which is an essential element in all sessions for all learners. As we believe consistency and well-taught English is the bedrock of a valuable education, at St Agnes we ensure that the teaching of writing is purposeful, robust and shows clear progression for all children. In line with the national curriculum, we ensure that each year group are taught the explicit grammar, punctuation and spelling objectives required for that age groups through our Non-Negotiables. 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 by the use of challenging learning objectives and success criteria. In this sense, assessment of writing is also more fluid as teachers can assess against these age-appropriate NNs/learning objectives. 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. All children have the opportunity to write using a variety of genres including poetry, narrative, plays as well as non-fiction types; these are carefully planned into topics so that children are able to practise specific skills and to write in a manner that helps them to make connections with their wider learning and which helps to support them in their later lives and further education.
The impact on our children is clear: progress, sustained learning and transferrable skills. With the implementation of the writing journey being well established and taught thoroughly throughout school, children are becoming more confident writers and by the time they are in upper Key Stage 2, most genres of writing are familiar to them and the teaching can focus on creativity, writer’s craft, sustained writing and manipulation of grammar and punctuation skills. As all aspects of English are an integral part of the curriculum, cross-curricular writing standards have also improved and skills taught in the English lesson are transferred into other subjects; this shows consolidation of skills and a deeper understanding of how and when to use specific grammar, punctuation and grammar objectives. We know that we have equipped children to move on from us to further their education and know that their creativity, passion for English and high aspirations travel with them and continue to grow and develop as they do.
Phonics at St Agnes
Reading at St Agnes School
Please see below our selection of recommended reading books by year group.