Spelling, punctuation and grammar is taught within writing lessons in engaging, relevant ways through a variety of quality texts, which is then reinforced in a cross-curricular fashion through other subjects, especially within the humanities curriculum. At Westvale Park we believe that a quality literacy curriculum promotes and encourages a love of reading, writing and discussion around quality texts. By the time pupils leave Westvale Park they have written for a wide range of different purposes and audiences, are able write with grammatical accuracy, and have experienced a wide range of texts and authors. Alongside this, they develop their reading, listening and speaking skills.
In Nursery and Reception, children focus on pre-writing skills to build their muscle strength and coordination using programmes such as “Dough Disco”. By the end of Reception, they will be starting to form most letter shapes recognisably and will be beginning to understand that we use writing to convey meaning, possibly in the form of a short sentence or caption. Our Read Write Inc. programme, especially the letter shape rhymes and “Hold a Sentence” strategy, helps pupils with early sentence writing.
In Key Stage One, children focus on mastering the basics of writing (letter formation, simple sentences and basic punctuation). We use elements of “Colourful Semantics” which colour code different parts of a sentence so children understand which ingredients a sentence needs. With these building blocks in place, in Key Stage Two pupils develop and refine their ‘writing voice’.
Our English curriculum units start with a high quality text from a range of talented authors. Texts are carefully mapped across the year groups to ensure progression and coverage. Children use these texts as a basis for discussion and analysis before applying what they have seen and discussed in our their writing. Children are given the opportunity to write every day to develop and refine their skills. Using our writing progression document, we ensure that children are taught all the necessary skills to meet the National Curriculum requirements.
Right from the start of school, children are immersed in poems, rhymes and stories that provide them with a solid understanding of story text structures and help them develop a love of reading.