Our Curriculum Intent for English
At Bramber Primary School, our unique curriculum and strong set of values underpins the teaching of reading and writing. We believe that English learning is key to children being well-equipped with the skills they need to become lifelong learners and we aim to ensure that all of our children develop a genuine love of language and the written word. We strive to ensure our children develop into articulate and imaginative communicators through the teaching and learning of English across the curriculum.
High-quality class texts in every year group not only inspires high-quality writing, but excite and interest the children so that they see themselves as authors: this gives purpose for writing. We teach and promote a diverse selection of texts that address the importance of being a global citizen while helping children to be aware and curious about current issues that affect our community and the wider world.
We carefully choose engaging, quality texts to teach early reading and writing accompanied by systematic, synthetic phonics. Mark-making and writing opportunities are initiated through play from the beginning of children’s learning journeys, giving purpose and enjoyment to writing. Confidence in phonics and writing is extended throughout Key Stage 1, so the children are able to produce quality writing with an early understanding of purpose and audience. Writing skills are taught to enhance the writing experience for children in Key Stage 1 and 2. In all year groups, age-appropriate grammar, punctuation and spelling is taught during the writing process with children given opportunities to apply the skills they have learned to extended, quality pieces of writing. Handwriting is taught alongside writing lessons and children are taught our Bramber cursive handwriting from the beginning through phonics and early literacy learning. Handwriting interventions to help develop hand skills and the handwriting style are offered and in the classroom, handwriting is taught creatively and memorably.
Our writers have opportunities to write about what they know and experience. First-hand experiences inside and outside the classroom inspire writing across the curriculum; we pride ourselves on giving children authentic reasons to write, allowing them to become confident and enthusiastic writers. Writing is often inspired by and linked to the chosen class text and topic, of which the children are immersed in throughout the term. As well as planning for quality pieces of extended writing, we believe that engagement in writing comes through choice and child-led ownership of what they write. We allow children to apply their skills to different styles of writing and ensure children feel they can make decisions on the purpose and audience of their writing. We believe that this encourages independence, as children can build on and apply the skills and conversations they have had, to secure their understanding of composition and the writing process as a whole.
Children learn to edit and improve their writing so that they are confident and reflective writers. They show resilience and bravery when enhancing their writing and they understand the value of planning, drafting and editing. We use marking and conferencing to get to know our children as writers and assist them on their writing journeys. We have found that spending one-to-one, quality time with individuals to talk through their planning and writing helps children develop that sense of authorial ownership.
Writing is celebrated by pieces being published either for display or their topic books. Children take pride in their published work which gives them further purpose for writing. They are given choice of publishing styles so that final pieces are individual and creative. When walking around our school, it will be noticed that writing is celebrated and on display.
Bramber Primary School has an overarching love for reading, which is evident in our love of books and how much our children are engaged with reading. Our beautiful, full library is central to our school and every child has access to it. Our Year 4 children take on the role of Junior Librarians to support the upkeep of the library, giving the children responsibilities and sense of pride. In every classroom there is a reading corner filled with a huge range of books. Reception and Key Stage 1 classrooms have cosy, sometimes topic-themed corners of their classrooms which encourage quiet and focused reading as well as creative, thoughtful talk about books. Book corners are engaging and have communicative elements: for example, the children can leave book recommendations for each other, or answer questions about the texts they choose.
Children in Reception and Key Stage 1 have access to a variety of books to read at school and at home: ‘banded’ books that match their current reading needs; books that link to their current phonics learning and crucially, books to love, enjoy and read for pleasure. Key Stage 2 classrooms also have ‘book spinners’ to help with choosing Accelerated Reader books. We use Accelerated Reader to assist with the assessment of reading in Key Stage 2. We encourage children to always read for pleasure while using their “Zone of Proximal Development” to help them choose books. We never limit our children to the books they can read and will support our earlier readers with a range of age-appropriate texts to choose from that develop fluency, while still allowing them to access any non-fiction or fiction texts such as stories, magazines, comics, poetry and factual texts.
Children in every year group are read with regularly and reading records between school and home are kept to ensure children have the opportunity to read with an adult every day. Parents and carers are encouraged to keep teachers updated with their child’s reading journey and teachers do the same by checking the reading records weekly and speaking with parents individually when needed.
We believe that reading and writing are intertwined and one cannot be taught without the other. A love of reading influences a passion for writing and communicating. We inspire children with excellent, thoughtful texts and our own love of books from their first day at Bramber Primary School and develop this on an individual level throughout their time at our school. We nurture a culture where children take pride in their reading and writing journeys, so that they feel prepared to embrace their futures in education and beyond.
Writing at Bramber
Reading at Bramber
In addition to our excellent and creative writing planning, teachers are supported by the following schemes to enhance the teaching and assessment of spelling and reading.
We use Read Write Inc. set books to teach early reading. We accompany these texts with closely matched, decodable books for children to read at home Reception through to Year 2.
In Years 3-6, we used Accelerated Reader to support the teaching and assessment of reading.
In all classes, we encourage reading for pleasure by sharing high-quality texts daily and regular access to our fantastic library. Children can check-out books to enjoy at home and at school.