English Curriculum Intent
At Essa, language is at the heart of everything we teach. We recognise that many of our children come to school speaking English as an additional language and aim to immerse them in a rich language culture from their first day in Reception. With well-planned speaking, listening and drama activities, we develop them as orators who are able to confidently communicate and present ideas formally and informally.
We know that in order to access the whole curriculum offer, and to broaden their opportunities in later life, they must be good readers. We aim to foster a love of reading and books in every child through exposing them to a wide variety of engaging and aspirational texts that celebrate the diversity of our school community, as well as introduce them to new cultures and experiences. Alongside this, we strive to ensure that every child leaves our school able to decode words, read fluently and comprehend a wide range of texts. Our hub area is purposed to inspire children to read and enhance their learning and regular author visits and events raise aspirations and open our children’s minds to creativity.
We want our children to see themselves as writers and through a robust and rigorous curriculum, we aim to give them the knowledge and skills to confidently use punctuation and grammar to write accurately, and stoke their imagination to write with flair and style. We aim to give them a variety of experiences to inspire them but also value their own culture and lived experience through writing.
Parental involvement plays an important role in ensuring our children are lifelong readers and writers. We value home school communication and regularly invite parents to events such as World Book Day, Family Phonics Picnic and reading workshops.
The children have daily English lessons that are rich in quality and content. We believe that reading should be at the heart of the curriculum, and every unit of work is based on a book from our comprehensive and diverse book spine. In order to ensure that our children become expert writers, our curriculum gives the children the opportunity to learn about writing to entertain, writing to inform, writing to persuade and writing to discuss. Within each unit, move through three phases to learn about the features, grammatical conventions and sentence constructions of a text type, with opportunities for deliberate practice at each stage.
Throughout each unit of work, the children have lots of opportunities to practise sentence writing, short writes and extended writes.
Spelling and Handwriting
In Reception, Year One and Year Two, spellings are linked to the Little Wandle scheme of work. These are practised in daily phonics sessions and are sent home each week. These words might be decodable words linked to phonemes being learned or tricky words.
In Years Three to Six, spellings continue to be taught using phonics. Each week, the children focus on a particular phoneme and investigate words containing this phoneme.
Presentation of work is very important and allows children to take pride in their work. At Essa, we use the 'Letter Join' scheme of work. Reception and Year One learn to neatly print handwriting, the children are introduced to joining in Year Two and in Years Three to Six, the children work on producing fluent joined handwriting in their own style. For more information please click below:
The children become immersed in the text, analysing vocabulary and inference through reading and exploring the text through drama, and speaking and listening.
The children have the opportunity to explore the features of a text type and effective sentence constructions, constructing their own sentences based on these.
The children use the features that they have learned and practised to compose their own extended texts. They critically analyse their work and edit/re-draft it.