What do teachers use to plan English?
Our class texts are appropriately planned out across the year to ensure children are exposed to a range of texts outlined in the curriculum such as modern fiction, non-fiction, fiction from our literary heritage, non-fiction, fairy tales and traditional tales etc. We have also ensured the texts chosen expose our children to a variety of experiences, cultures and ways of life. Our class texts expose children to a variety of diverse authors and characters alongside exploring a range of themes within these texts such as diversity, protected characteristics, British values, links to our foundation curriculum and much more. Please click on the link below to see which texts are taught at which time in each year group alongside the rationale for each text at the bottom of the document.
We use the following planning formats to plan our English units around a class text. These planning formats are used to clearly identify our assessment and intervention based on that assessment (see assessment section below). Planning is clear and follows a standardised format to ensure learning is sequenced logically and appropriately to build up to the writing piece on a Friday. Planning is shared with all adults involved in the lessons the week before. This ensures all adults supporting children are fully aware of the learning objectives and how best to support children meeting those learning outcomes, especially the lowest ability and SEND children.
Planning Progression Documents
How are children supported in their English lessons?
Children have access to writing skills booklets in English lessons. These booklets are designed to support children in ‘knowing more, learning more and remembering more’.
Children use these booklets to support their writing by giving clear definitions, examples, hints and tips in using punctuation and grammar skills in their writing autonomously.
We have standardised displays in classrooms. These are updated at the beginning of each week detailing vocabulary that they will encounter in their class text that week, the success criteria for their piece of writing they are building up to at the end of the week and non-negotiables in their English work. This is referred to consistently across the week and children use this as a tool to help them during lessons. Children are encouraged to apply the vocabulary they have been exposed to in their own writing that week.
We also use quality first teaching to ensure children reach lesson objectives. Our marking and feedback policy ensures that teachers are in constant circulation around the room, supporting children and offering verbal feedback throughout children’s learning. This is highlighted by the Education Endowment Foundation as a highly effective strategy for pupil outcomes. Teachers use quality first teaching to provide proportionate support to pupils in most need of support in that lesson to achieve that lesson’s outcome. This policy also impacts teacher workload. Teachers have the majority of books marked for most lessons by the end of the lesson – reducing teacher workload.
How are lower ability and SEND children supported and how is the curriculum adapted to ensure these children make progress and are included?
At Collierley Primary and Nursery School, we ensure children of lower ability, children who may have fallen off track or children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) are given every opportunity to reach their full potential. Through our English teaching, we use the following strategies, techniques and resources to provide high quality support for these children.
Firstly, we use high-quality standardised assessment (see below for more detail). This assessment provides us with real-time monitoring of children’s attainment and progress from the start of their schooling with us. The impact of this assessment is that we can identify children who are of a lower ability or SEND early on in their schooling with us, intervening early and making an impact right away. This assessment also affords us the ability to monitor if children are making good progress, again intervening early where this is not the case.
The main driver of supporting children of lower ability and SEND is Quality First Teaching. Through this strategy, we ensure that children are appropriately catered for and tailored to in their learning. This includes but is not exclusive to: targeted questioning, focused support during independent work, scaffolding learners and ensuring work is appropriately differentiated and accessible for learners.
“Quality First Teaching is a style of teaching that emphasises high quality, inclusive teaching for all pupils in a class. Quality first teaching includes differentiated learning, strategies to support SEN pupils’ learning in class, on-going formative assessment and many others,” – Third Space Learning.
Our lower ability pupils and SEND pupils also participate in reading interventions. These reading interventions target two specific groups. The bottom 20% readers in all year groups and what we classify as ‘non-fluent readers’. Please see the reading and phonics pages for more detailed information on these interventions. Bottom 20% readers are provided with five and three one-to-one reading sessions each week by an adult in school in early years/key stage one and key stage two respectively. This is to ensure reading fluency and also provides children who may not have the opportunity to be read with the expected three times a week at home be “provided extra opportunities to read,” – Reading Framework. However we do work with parents to ensure this is kept to a minimum including drop in sessions, guidance sent out via text regularly and specific reading sessions to up skill parents in supporting their children with reading at home.
We also provide children who are ‘non-fluent readers’ with both extra opportunities to read and an intervention pathway to reading fluency using a fully trained and qualified Sounds Write teaching assistant and phonetically matched, age-appropriate decodable readers. These children are firstly identified by class teachers to the English lead as ‘non-fluent readers’. They are then assessed based around the Sounds Write levels. This ascertains the level in which they are lacking in code understanding. They are then taught at this level, reassessed before moving onto the next level. This process continues until they have passed through the entire programme and are classed as fluent readers. As a school, compliant with The Reading Framework’s recommendations, we ensure that these interventions have a high-school priority and are not unjustly moved or cancelled.
At Collierley Primary and Nursery School, we classify ‘non-fluent readers’ as a reader who falls into any or all of the following categories:
a) Regularly and consistently struggles with decoding.
b) Regularly and consistently struggles with segmenting and blending.
c) Has not passed the phonics screening check.
How are children assessed and what is this assessment used for?
Reading is assessed termly using NFER assessments. NFER assessments provide us with standardised scores which help track progress across and through year groups. We use this data to identify children who are not making adequate progress and intervene. Children who are in the bottom 20% of readers, identified through these assessments, are provided extra one-to-one reading opportunities a week as follows: key stage one, five times per week; key stage two, three times per week. These interventions are completed by class teachers and teaching assistants. Please see our reading and phonics pages for more detail on how we support and use interventions for our off-track and bottom 20% children.
Spelling, punctuation and grammar:
Spelling, punctuation and grammar is also assessed through termly NFER assessments during our assessment weeks. This assessment informs both whole-class areas of need and misconception and are addressed through SPaG misconception sessions twice a week as starters for English lessons. This assessment also informs teachers of lower ability and off-track children, providing them with the knowledge and understanding of individual gaps in learning or misconceptions and in turn, informing their Quality First Teaching.
Children are assessed termly using our writing assessment sheets (see below). These writing assessment sheets are used to identify where gaps in skills are and are used to inform whole-class areas for development which are addressed in our SPaG misconception sessions at the beginning of two lessons per week. Individual areas of need for children are identified and used to inform quality first teaching and focused support during lessons to help children catch up on missed learning, areas of misunderstanding and misconception.
Writing Assessment Sheets
Under construction and coming soon!
A reading spine detailing which books children will have read for pleasure at the end of each year group all the way from EYFS to year six.
A class text long term overview demonstrating each class text we base our English teaching around for each week in each year group. Have a sneak peak here!
Priority areas for developing English and what we are doing about them:
Writing is the area we, alongside many other schools, found was most detrimentally impact by COVID-19, school related absence and remote learning. As a result, we have a significant whole-school drive to improve writing outcomes. We have implemented a new way of teaching English outlined above, developed writing skills packs for children to access and have very recently introduced standardised planning frames for children to use across key phases. This new standardised planning frame teaches children to break up their writing into key ideas, then (using a small section such as an introductory or descriptive paragraph) extrapolate their ideas out into well formed, accurate pieces with high levels of vocabulary.
Spelling is an area of whole-school development. We have introduced Sounds Write phonics. This phonics scheme teaches children how to read and spell words using their phoneme grapheme correspondence all the way from Early Years Foundation Stage to Year 6.
Reading is a paramount area of school development. We have introduced high expectations of reading both in school and at home, introduced Sounds Write systematic, synthetic phonics programme, purchased phonetically matched decodable readers for all children in school. Invested almost £3000 in reading books for Accelerated Reader in Key Stage Two and ensured that those children in the bottom 20%, ‘non-fluent readers’ and ‘reading disadvantaged’ are provided appropriate, tailored pathways to reading fluency and afforded extra opportunities to read in school.
Exemplary pieces of work from each year group:
Key Stage One:
Key Stage Two: