Literacy

At St Joseph's we use the National Curriculum as a basis for all teaching in English
 
Teachers develop pupils’ spoken language, reading, writing and vocabulary as integral aspects of the teaching of every subject. English is both a subject in its own right and the medium for teaching; for pupils, understanding the language provides access to the whole curriculum. Fluency in the English language is an essential foundation for success in all subjects.

Teachers should develop pupils’ reading and writing in all subjects to support their acquisition of knowledge. Pupils should be taught to read fluently, understand extended prose (both fiction and non-fiction) and be encouraged to read for pleasure. Schools should do everything to promote wider reading. They should provide library facilities and set ambitious expectations for reading at home. Pupils should develop the stamina and skills to write at length, with accurate spelling and punctuation. They should be taught the correct use of grammar. They should build on what they have been taught to expand the range of their writing and the variety of the grammar they use. The writing they do should include narratives, explanations, descriptions, comparisons, summaries and evaluations: such writing supports them in rehearsing, understanding and consolidating what they have heard or read
 
Pupils’ acquisition and command of vocabulary are key to their learning and progress across the whole curriculum. Teachers should therefore develop vocabulary actively, building systematically on pupils’ current knowledge. They should increase pupils’ store of words in general; simultaneously, they should also make links between known and new vocabulary and discuss the shades of meaning in similar words. In this way, pupils expand the vocabulary choices that are available to them when they write. In addition, it is vital for pupils’ comprehension that they understand the meanings of words they meet in their reading across all subjects, and older pupils should be taught the meaning of instruction verbs that they may meet in examination questions. It is particularly important to induct pupils into the language which defines each subject in its own right, such as accurate mathematical and scientific language

At St. Joseph’s we teach English on a daily basis and where possible, through a thematic approach, so to ensure skills are transferable. We provide opportunities for pupils to embed their skills in a variety of platforms through our enriched REACH curriculum on a Friday. Such activities include debating, public speaking and writing to our local MP. Therefore, writing has a real purpose and audience for the pupils. When possible, the writing genres is linked to the topic which enhances their learning across the curriculum.

We teach daily phonics in EYFS and Key Stage 1 using Letters and Sounds and the National Curriculum Programmes of Study. In Key Stage 2 we teach  spelling, grammar and punctuation on a daily basis using Read, Write, Ink. Alongside this, daily reading activities are integral to the day in the format of guided reading, as well as one to one reading.

We use ‘Bug Club’ to encourage a broader range of text types for reading and the ‘Book Bands’ scheme throughout the school.