English

At East Dene Primary School, we know that reading is at the heart of every successful writer. In turn, we ensure that children receive high-quality daily reading sessions to immerse children in language-rich texts which are carefully selected and planned out across the year. We believe in the importance of developing children’s word-reading skills and comprehension and we recognise the importance of both elements by ensuring children have a secure understanding of the key skills in order to understand and engage with a text.

Whole-class Reading: In KS2, we adopt a whole-class approach to reading which means that children of all attainment bands are immersed in the same high-quality literature and the meaningful discussions that these texts promote.  We build depth of understanding through studying a whole-text approach as we see it as absolutely pivotal that children are exposed to complete texts to deepen understanding. We do expose children to contrasting texts through shared read which are carefully mapped out across the year (see ‘Reading Across the Curriculum’). Our aim is for children to leave East Dene with a love of reading and an in-depth knowledge of a range of genres, authors and contexts to draw on throughout their education and life. As we teach reading at a whole class level, we do not label children. Therefore, children are taught in mixed ability groups and are supported in moving along at the same pace.

Planning: At the planning stage, teachers consider the scaffolding which may be required for children and plan suitable questioning to ensure children are appropriately challenged. The reading sessions include modelled, shared and independent reading opportunities and both group, paired and independent tasks are set. We ensure there is effective modelling of reading to allow children to see a variety of reading styles and performances as well as the thought processes a reader journeys through. All of this high-quality discussion and exposure to quality literature is carefully scaffolded by use of talk frames and varied talk groupings to ensure effective talk can take place.

Vocabulary development: At the start of every reading session, pre-selected vocabulary is explored with the children. Within the vocabulary teach, we ensure that teachers provide a description, explanation or sentence based example of the new word referring to the word class. Children may then be asked to recall the definition, draw a picture, symbol or graphic to represent the word, explore similar of different words, and/or construct figurative examples to compare the word to more comprehensible ideas. We use adapted versions of the ‘Frayer Model’ to explore vocabulary.

Guided Reading: In KS1, we teach reading in focused guided reading groups: teachers work with a small number of children, who are grouped according to their reading level, to analyse a text in detail, making sure each child can read each word and discussing meaning of the text with them. Within the sessions, teachers will focus on both decoding and comprehension. Where pupils are working on decoding strategies teachers make explicit the strategy to be practised and model it. They encourage children to read the text independently, using the appropriate strategies. Where pupils are working on responding to the text and focusing on comprehension, teachers ensure that the explicit modelling of  the reading skill is linked to the objective and questioning is designed to embed and deepen understanding, pupils are encouraged to give extended answers and teachers will model back incorrect use of language and grammatical structures

Reading Skills: Underpinning all reading are the ‘DERIC’ reading skills. In all reading sessions, we explicitly talk about and teach reading skills to the children and we have taken on Rhonda Wilson’s ‘Read with DERIC’ which we link to all areas of the reading curriculum. We use and refer to these skill icons in all reading sessions.

DECODE: word reading

EXPLAIN: discussing vocabulary in contexts and discussing understanding of the text

RETRIEVE: finding information directly from the text

INTERPRET: Inference skills with an emphasis on using evidence from the text

CHOICE: focus on author’s choice of words and layout

Key Principles: In all reading sessions, teachers follow 5 key principles: promote an enjoyment of reading; have rich and meaningful conversations about the texts; pitch high & scaffold for all; build talk around responses and questioning; challenge responses and encourage children to think critically.

Questioning: Questioning is used to probe understanding whilst also taking some children’s learning deeper. Teachers use questioning throughout every lesson to check understanding. A variety of questions are used but you will hear the same ones: How do you know? Can you prove it? Are you sure? Can you think of another way of looking at it? Can you explain that? What does your partner think? Children’s responses are expected in full sentences using precise vocabulary, talk frames and sentence stems.

Discussion and Feedback: Pupils have opportunities to talk to their partners and explain and clarify understanding and thinking. They use talk guidelines, APE sheets, sentence stems and talk frames, as modelled by the teacher, to support their discussions. Teachers consider the physical structure of discussions in every talk activity. These groupings have varied numbers of students involved.

SEND Pupils:  SEND pupils may be supported by additional adults, resources and scaffolds and differentiated activities. They may also complete additional activities outside of the lesson if necessary.

Reading across the Curriculum: Realising the importance of wider reading and promoting a love of reading, we ensure there are many opportunities for children to be exposed to a range of texts outside of the reading lesson. We have carefully mapped out a recommended reading list for each year group which ensures children are exposed to a range of authors, contexts, themes and vocabulary.

Reading beyond the Classroom: As reading is the key to success, we believe that reading every day is of the upmost importance. We encourage our children to read at home, through our continued Read Every Day initiative, whether that be on their own or with a parent/carer. We set weekly and termly reading challenges in line with the initiative and the successes of this are regularly celebrated with the children. As a result of this, our children are becoming enthusiastic readers.

Reading Prompts

Download Key Stage 1 Reading Prompts

Download Key Stage 2 Reading Prompts

Reading Lists

Year 1 Reading List

Year 2 Reading List

Year 3 Reading List

Year 4 Reading List

Year 5 Reading List

Year 6 Reading List

red-posterRead Every Day

As reading is the key to success, we believe that reading every day is of the upmost importance. We encourage our children to read every day at home whether that be on their own or with a parent/carer. The successes of this are regularly celebrated with the children. As a result of this, our children are becoming enthusiastic readers and we encourage them read widely and across a variety of genres and authors.

How can you help?

  1. Set aside a regular time for reading afterschool.
  2. Ask questions about the book they are currently reading and their class novel.
  3. Encourage a wide variety of reading materials which are appropriate to them.
  4. Take them to the library.
  5. Ask your child’s class teacher about their progress in reading.
  6. Show an enthusiasm for your child’s reading.

Download Read Every Day Letter to Parents

 

 

At East Dene Primary School, we are passionate about children achieving their full potential in all areas of English. English develops children’s ability to listen, speak, read and write for a wide range of purposes and here at East Dene, children are encouraged to express themselves creatively and imaginatively as they become enthusiastic and critical readers and writers. We know that being literate prepares them for the future they deserve and allows them to become articulate thinkers. We strongly believe that it is both our responsibility – as well as our privilege – to promote a lifelong love of learning, communicating, reading and writing and to accompany and support our pupils on a journey to realise their potential.

Novel Study

We adopt a ‘Novel Study’ approach to the teaching of English which means pupils connect with high-quality, age-appropriate texts which hook pupils in and increases engagement and enjoyment in all areas of our English curriculum. Taking on the novel study approach to the teaching of English promotes opportunity for children to be exposed to experiences outside their current reality and exposes children to varied situations, confrontations and challenges which they may otherwise not face. By using this approach, all aspects of our English curriculum are taught through the text and pupils use and apply skills and understanding in spelling and grammar, reading and writing.

Text Selection and Progression: With pupil’s experiences and interests at the heart of all selected texts, we have a scheme of work which is progressive, offers exposure to a broad and rich range of vocabulary, introduces them to a variety of authors and contexts and tackles many themes. All of this ensures we purposefully create reasons, motivations and audiences for writing.

Planning: In the planning stage, teachers consider the scaffolding and varied approaches that will be required for children to become fully immersed in the text and have a deep and embedded understanding.  Lessons are planned based on formative assessments and teachers ensure they adapt lessons to meet the needs of their learners. Staff have been supported in the planning process to ensure there is an effective and progressive journey through learning.

Within the initial planning stage, teachers embark on a 3 step journey which is outlined below.

Part 1: After staff have read the text, they will individually map out their initial ideas: themes, motifs, text ideas, key ideas, launch ideas and immersion. This stage is important to ensure that all members of the team are engaged in the planning process and expertise can be drawn on from across the whole team.

Part 2: This is when the whole team will combine all ideas selectively through meaningful discussion: reviewing and adapting for what is right for that particular year group or cohort. This forms the basis for the learning journey.

Part 3: The learning journey maps out the journey through the text, across a number of weeks, whether that be 3+ weeks for a picture book or 7+ weeks for a novel. We plan with the final outcome as our focus and ensure that all learning is supportive of that pre-planned final outcome. We ensure many writing opportunities are incorporated throughout the journey and we ensure appropriate time is spent on vocabulary development, immersion and planning before we move into the writing phase which includes opportunities to edit and redraft work.

Direct Teaching of Writing: There are 4 stages of the writing process which is a gradual release from teacher directed to independent.

Editing and Redrafting: We know that effective writers need strong editing and proof reading skills so children are taught the need to edit and proofread their writing fromKS1. This begins with evaluating their writing with the teacher and others and proofreading their work for sense and proposing changes to grammar and vocabulary. Children are also taught to proofread their work for spelling and punctuation errors – any changes to children’s own writing is made in green pen. Children continue this journey throughout KS2 by developing their understanding of the need, as a writer, to continuously reflect on writing making edits as appropriate to their year group and begin to redraft their work for publishing. Children in KS2 have a published work book which showcases their final pieces of writing from across the curriculum.

Questioning: Questioning is used to probe understanding whilst also taking some children’s learning deeper. Teachers use questioning throughout every lesson to check understanding. A variety of questions are used but you will hear the same ones: How do you know? Can you prove it? Are you sure? Can you think of another way of looking at it? Can you explain that? What does your partner think? Children’s responses are expected in full sentences using precise vocabulary, talk frames and sentence stems.

Discussion and Feedback: Pupils have opportunities to talk to their partners and explain and clarify understanding and thinking. They use talk guide lines, sentence stems and talk frames, as modelled by the teacher, to support their discussions. Teachers consider the physical structure of discussions in every talk activity. These groupings have varied numbers of students involved.

Recording the Learning: In children’s English books, you will see a range of outcomes focusing on speaking and listening, reading and writing all of which are supportive of immersing the children in the text they are studying so that the children are equipped to be successful writers.

Marking:  A next step is given 3 times per week to ensure that children either consolidate their learning or challenge is given to move learning forward. You will see a range of marking edits being used by the teacher to address omission or misuse of spellings, corrections in punctuation and capital letters.  Children respond to these next steps and marking edits in green pen predominantly during reflection time.

Spelling Bee

The East Dene Spelling Bee is happening this term! We are celebrating the value of learning how to spell and challenging the children to a spelling bee. There will be certificates, prizes and trophies for those who take part!

UKS2: Thursday 5th December

LKS2: Friday 6th December

KS1: coming soon!

Ultimate Final: Friday 13th December

What will happen?

Children will have a list of words to learn for the spelling bee competition. These are specific to what is taught in your child’s year group, during that term, and can be found below. Their class teacher will run heats and 4 children will be put forward from each year group for the semi-final!

How will spellings be tested?

During the final, children will be given whiteboards to write down their spelling words.

Happy Spelling!