English at Willowbrook Mead Primary Academy is an exciting journey of learning. We deliver our English curriculum through a book rich curriculum in the Early Years Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 and a novel led curriculum in Key Stage 2. We are proud that from year 3-6 children will read and study a minimum of 12 novels in their entirety.
Our approach to the teaching of English is underpinned by an engaging curriculum which allows children of all abilities to develop the skills to become confident speakers and then transfer these skills into becoming confident writers over time.
As they develop, children are encouraged to see writing as a powerful means of self – expression, a creative form of communication and to write for a range of purposes. Pupils in time develop the stamina and skills to write at length, with increasingly accurate spelling and punctuation.
We explore different types of writing, such as; narratives, explanations, persuasion, descriptions, comparisons, summaries and evaluations. We aim to make writing fun, purposeful and stimulating for our children. We use Alan Peat’s Sentence Types to teach children how to structure sentences in order to help them to make their writing engaging and interesting. We strive to ensure that they receive an appropriate level of challenge in each lesson.
The school follow the Read, Write, Inc. phonics scheme to get children reading and writing quickly – and loving it! Establishing a genuine love of reading and writing in our youngest children and developing this enthusiasm as they move through school, lies at the very heart of what we do every day.
We always welcome the support and contributions of our parents and carers – and there is a lot you can do to help your child develop vital early literacy skills and set them up as passionate, lifelong readers and writers.
To learn to read children need to:
• learn 44 sounds (phonemes) and the corresponding letters/letter groups (graphemes)
• learn to read words using sound blending
Have a look at our Early reading and phonics page for more information.
All children in years 1-6 have a weekly spelling test. Please ensure that your child is practising their spellings at home. This will help with their reading and writing. The children are also expected to know the ‘common exception words’ for their age. The word-lists for years 3 and 4 and years 5 and 6 are statutory. The lists are a mixture of words pupils frequently use in their writing and those which they often misspell. Some of the listed words may be thought of as quite challenging, but the 100 words in each list can easily be taught within the four years of key stage 2 alongside other words that teachers consider appropriate.
Please see below these words for your child’s year group.
Year 3 and 4
Year 5 and 6
At Willowbrook Mead, we teach children to use cursive script. This starts from our Foundation Stage classes through to year 6.
We use ‘Letter-join’ to teach our handwriting and the children are encouraged to include cursive handwriting in all of their written work. All children have their log in details in their reading records. Please click here to log in.
We love reading at Willowbrook Mead! All children are given the opportunity to read on a daily basis. They take part in shared and guided reading sessions and regularly read to adults until they are fluent and confident readers. They are encouraged to take home a levelled reading book that is matched to their current reading ability and a book that can be read to them by an adult at home.
This is a digital reading service to support children’s reading development at home as well as at school. Oxford Owl contains hundreds of digital books and book-quizzes all matched to each child’s reading ability.
Pupils at Willowbrook are given lots of experiences that enrich their learning in English. While Covid has posed some barriers to this, we have still been committed to bringing them exciting and fun opportunities to develop their English skills.
Examples of enrichment activities include trips to the theatre, visiting theatre groups for reception and KS1, poetry workshops, Our Best Book project, World Book Day events, the Travelling Bookshop and more.
Phonics and Grammar KS1
Spelling and Grammar – KS2
Oxford Owl Phonics