Literacy

The more you read, the more things you will know. The more things you learn, the more places you will go.

At Brunton we feel strongly that reading and writing are crucial life skills that open up a world of possibilities to the children on their journey through school. At Brunton our English curriculum enables our children to become confident, enthusiastic writers and passionate, independent readers. All year groups have daily English lessons but the skills of reading, writing and speaking are taught across all our curriculum subjects.

All of our English units are based around a book which is used as a stimulus for a range of writing styles. Focusing on a particular text over a number of weeks allows the children to become fully immersed in the book and explore it in detail. Teachers follow a small step approach when planning lessons thinking about the skills the children need to build up to a longer piece of writing, including handwriting, spelling, punctuation and grammar. The writing tasks the children complete are purposeful and based on the context of the text they are studying.

Reading

In Reception and Key Stage One the children have two group reading sessions a week led by a trained member of staff. They use texts that are closely matched to their phonic knowledge:

  • Session 1: Focus on decoding skills
  • Session 2: Focus on comprehension and reading with expression

As the children become more confident at reading in Year 2 their small group reading sessions are replaced with Whole Class Reading.
In Key Stage Two reading is taught through daily Whole Class Reading sessions. These sessions combine decoding, comprehension and reading with expression.

In school we use ‘Reading Dogs’ for each of the different reading skills taught: prediction, retrieval, inference, sequencing, vocabulary. In Key Stage Two we also include summarising and author intentions.

Phonics

As a school we follow Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised. Children in Reception and Year 1 have a daily phonics session. We teach phonics as whole class sessions following the progression of the Little Wandle scheme. Children who are at risk of falling behind are given keep-up interventions by a trained member of staff.

From Year 2 children move on to learning spelling rules once they are confident with using and applying their phonics knowledge. Children have chance to practise their spellings daily and these are tested through a dictated sentence at the end of each week.

We are passionate about getting children to love reading and teachers regularly share books with their classes. Each class has its own library area containing high quality texts. The children also have a weekly visit to the school library which has a diverse range of texts covering many different subjects and genres. The children choose a book from the library to borrow each week.