At Weedon Bec Primary School, we believe that English is the key to education and to life-long learning. The skills children learn in English will enable them to communicate their knowledge, ideas and emotions through their writing. Our aim is that children learn to read, write and speak with confidence. We want pupils to acquire a wide vocabulary, a solid understanding of grammar and be able to spell new words by effectively applying the spelling patterns and rules they learn throughout their time in primary school. We want them to write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences. We believe that all pupils should be encouraged to take pride in the presentation of their writing, in part by developing a good, joined, handwriting style by the time they move to secondary school. We believe that all good writers refine and edit their writing over time, so we want children to develop independence in being able to identify their own areas for improvement in all pieces of writing, editing their work effectively during and after the writing process. We understand the importance of parents and carers in supporting their children and we encourage parent support with spelling practice.
Within our lessons we aim for the teaching to engage and inspire the children within a safe and nurturing environment that promotes curiosity and the confidence to explore styles of writing and different genres. We want the children to be resilient writers that show perseverance. Our lessons will model and scaffold the skill they are developing and provide opportunities for them to practise and apply these skills. Our ambitious aspirations for learning across the school are coherently planned and sequenced in our Writing Progression map, highlighting the skill that children will learn each term. A varied selection of age appropriate texts across a breadth of genres is listed in our reading progression map that can be used to inspire the writing within the lesson and create cross curricular links.
Each class is taught creative writing at least three lessons each week and in KS2 they are taught four lessons each week. This comprises of a combination of discrete lessons and weaving in writing, grammar and spelling skills across the wider curriculum areas, where links are appropriate. Within these lessons, the children are exposed to a wide variety of literature, genres and authors within every lesson. Children are encouraged to be curious about texts and the choices authors have made. At Weedon Bec we believe children should be encouraged to write for purpose or audience, teachers plan many units which are focused on everyday life e.g. instructions, letters and plays.
A spellings and grammar focused session takes place each week, this can be a daily 10/15 minute session or an hour a week depending what suits the needs of the class. A spelling list is given to each child with their focus spellings for that half term so that the children can progress through these at their own pace at home. This list will be the curriculum spelling list for their year group, however this will be differentiated when necessary to ensure the high frequency and common exceptions words from previous year groups are not missed. Children in KS2 are encouraged to practise their spellings in sentences to cement their understanding of the definition and ability to use the word within context.
At Weedon, we strive to develop a wide bank of vocabulary for each child to use within their writing and speech. This is broadened further by the use of dictionaries and thesauruses within school. The children are taught how to use them effectively and this skill is promoted independently throughout KS2. Within KS1, the recent implementation of Read, Write Inc is ensuring reading, phonics, grammar, spelling and writing all go hand in hand, rather than being seen by the children as separate entities. This is to ensure children apply their phonics knowledge to their writing as spelling has been acknowledged as an area that needs to be improved.