English at Exeter – a learning community
At Exeter – a learning community we adopt a cross-curricular approach to the teaching of English. We encourage the children to apply their knowledge from other areas for the curriculum, for example history, geography and science.
In Key Stage 1 and 2, we follow a two-week cycle approach. In the first week, the children are immersed in the text type looking at the language structure of the text and they analyse its style, content and features. We hook the children in with engaging texts that appeal to the children’s interests. In the second week, they apply what they have learnt to an extended piece of writing taught through the programme, ‘Write from the Beginning’. They use oral rehearsal and visual structure to support their writing.
In Foundation Stage 2, the children complete daily journal writing including narrative, describing and writing to explain why.
In the academy, we encourage the children to develop a love of reading. We provide children with the opportunity to visit the local library as well as our libraries in school. In Key Stage 1 & 2, each year group has an author of the term to provide them with exposure with a variety of texts. We actively promote good reading by providing opportunities for our Key Stage 2 children to read with Key Stage 1.
Children are taught reading skills through structured guided reading alongside their English lessons. In Foundation Stage 2, the curriculum is centred around stories which supports all areas of learning.
Phonics and Spelling
We teach phonics using the Read, Write Inc. scheme. From Foundation Stage 2 to Year 2, the children are streamed within their year group to allow for the high achievers to make accelerated progress and those with additional needs to gain further support. Phonics is taught in short briskly paced sessions and then applied to reading and writing in a meaningful context.
From Year 2 upwards, we use the Read, Write Inc. spelling scheme to provide a structured approach to the teaching of spelling.
All classroom environments have an age appropriate display concentrating on sounds, key words and spelling rules. At school we provide ample opportunities to reinforce and apply phonic knowledge and spelling skills across the curriculum.