Here at Forefield Community Infant and Nursery School, the development of reading, writing, speaking and listening skills is at the forefront of all of our teaching. In our Nursery Class, children are immersed into a rich language environment where developing communication, speaking and listening skills is the focus in every learning experience. At this young age the children are introduced to reading by listening to and acting out stories; by identifying their own and their friends’ written names and by recognising text within the environment. They take part in a wide range of pre-writing activities which develop both gross and fine motor skills and by the end of the year they will be practising to independently write their own name.

In our Reception and Year 1 Classes, as well as a continued focus on the development of language skills, the more formal teaching of reading and writing takes place. Within our Phonics Lessons, we use the Phonic Bug Scheme to teach the mechanics of reading and writing. The children are introduced to the phonemes (sounds in words), followed by the graphemes (the different ways to spell the sounds). In order to ensure teaching is at the relevant level to each child’s individual needs, the scheme is split into phases (see below for what is taught in each phase), with one particular phase being focused upon within each Phonic Group. The children are assessed at the end of each half term and re-grouped according to the phonic phase they are working on. As well as a daily Phonics Lesson, the children take part in a daily English Lesson which is based around a class text. Here the children develop their skills in handwriting, letter formation, sentence structure, punctuation, grammar and their understanding of different genres.

By Year 2, the children have been introduced to all the different phonemes and graphemes within the English language so the focus moves from phonics to spelling words correctly. Children will learn different spelling rules and gain strategies to help them independently choose how to spell words correctly. They continue to build upon their understanding of grammar and begin to develop their cursive handwriting. They write for a range of purposes and discover how to add more detailed information to their stories in order to engage the reader. In reading, there is a move from decoding words to focusing on developing the children’s comprehension skills to ensure they understand what they are reading. By the time the children leave us in Year 2 we aim for them to be confident in reading, writing, speaking and listening and be confident to use these skills within everyday experiences.

Year Group English Curriculum Maps

Spelling & Phonic Games

Websites with free eBooks for your child to read

Writing Ideas

Reading for Pleasure

Last year one of our half term challenge was to read our favourite story book at home and complete a book review of this book. We also asked children to bring these books in to share with the rest of their class. Children took some time this week to share their stories with their friends and class. It was fantastic to see the children reading and enjoying new story books and children talking confidently about why this was their favourite story book.

We can’t wait for next half term to do this all over again and see what new wonderful story books Santa may bring you.

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