At Broughton Community Schools, we want to raise the literacy achievement of children by putting quality children’s literature at the heart of all learning. The culture of every classroom encourages children to be curious and to consciously use language to think, explore, reflect and communicate effectively.
Our curriculum is designed to become the ‘windows and mirrors’ for our children, to offer a view of our diverse world and to support them to be confident and competent learners.
At Broughton Community Schools, we use CLPE The Power of Reading approach to introduce a high-quality text (linked to their topic where possible) and plan a sequence of lessons to build towards an extended piece of writing.
Successful writing always starts with a clear understanding of audience and purpose. We use James Durran’s approach to Boxed Criteria to identify the audience and purpose for the written outcome. From this, the desired ‘effect on the reader’ is established, linked then to the language, grammar and writing structures required to achieve this.
Using The Power of Reading approach as our guide, we adapt the planning to work alongside our Broughton writing process. This process is used from Year 1 – Year 6 and altered to meet the needs of Reception. It is followed to create every written outcome.
Our Broughton writing process is as follows:
Hook and Explore
Edit and Revise
The process begins with a hook to engage our children and launch the new unit of work. Next, the children explore the language features of the text. Then, our pupils plan their text type and write independently after high-quality modelling from the class teacher. The children have the opportunity to edit and revise their work which is integral if any student is to make sustained improvement towards their own ‘mastery model’. This aspect of the process is also modelled by the class teacher. Finally, the children publish or present their work, taking pride in their final outcome.
At Broughton Community Schools, we use the Spelling Shed programme from Year 2 to Year 6, which provides a comprehensive yet accessible pathway for progression. The approach involves not only the relationship between graphemes and phonemes but also uses morphology and etymology to help spell through meaning. Guidance, rather than prescription, is provided on how to teach the strategies, knowledge and skills pupils need to learn. It is expected that assessment and teacher judgement will identify the starting point for each child.
We teach one discreet lesson of spelling a week and this is then revisited in context through writing lessons. Spellings are set weekly and consolidated in class. For children who need additional support, a phonics assessment may be carried out and the children would receive phonics intervention in line with the Little Wandle programme used in KS1.
Pupils should experience coherence and continuity in the learning and teaching of handwriting and should be encouraged to take pride in the presentation of their work. Our aim is to help pupils enjoy learning and developing their handwriting with a sense of achievement and pride.
In Reception and Year 1, there is a big emphasis on developing gross and fine motor skills. Letter formation is taught using the Little Wandle formation phrases, which make a link between the mnemonic and the letter. As per the Department for Education guidance cursive is not taught in EYFS.
In Year 2 to Year 6, we use Letter-join as the basis of our handwriting policy that covers all the requirements of the 2014 National Curriculum. When a child demonstrates consistently neat and joined handwriting, they will be awarded a pen license (use of a pen in all lessons).
How can you support your children at home?
Children are given spellings to practice each week at home. There are online games which are designed to be used at home to support children with their weekly spellings. Parents and carers should also practise the weekly spellings each day for 10 minutes at home to consolidate children’s understanding.
Children who need support with their handwriting will be given Letter join home learning packs, which consist of fine motor skills activities and spellings of high frequency words. Parents and carers should support children to complete these activities so their handwriting is joined consistently.