Weaving a journey as a reader and writer at Brooklands Farm

At Brooklands Farm Primary School we weave our English learning journey throughout a broad and balanced curriculum. We follow the National Curriculum and our overall aim is that children leave primary school as confident readers and writers.

At Brooklands, we know that reading and writing must weave together in order to develop children who are confident and fluent readers and writers. When teaching writing, reading still remains at the heart of learning and children are engaged and immersed in a wide range of high quality texts that inform, entertain, and help children to make sense of themselves and the world around them.

Writing 

Through following the National Curriculum and using the Talk for Writing strategy, children are given opportunities to express their opinions, ideas and beliefs through their writing, communicating for a range of purposes and audiences. 

At Brooklands Farm, we use Pie Corbett’s ‘Talk for Writing’ teaching sequence when planning and teaching writing across the school. This strategy creates opportunities for children to be open to new ideas, skills and structures that they learn from reading new literature; to grow these skills through carefully structured lessons, where they move from oral rehearsal to oral innovation, before transcribing these skills in order to ensure they are embedded in the long term memory; before believing that they are powerful writers, putting pen to paper and expressing themselves, using their knowledge obtained along the way. We believe that it is paramount that children learn, rehearse and recite texts to help develop their spoken literacy. Through using this approach, children are able to develop their knowledge of stories, poems and non-fiction texts whilst internalising ambitious language and complex sentence constructions. 

Whilst the technical, grammatical structures of writing are fundamental to developing high academic success, at Brooklands Farm we also believe that developing a love of writing is imperative.  Whole-school creative writing days are planned to encourage excitement and a love of writing across the school; children are also given regular opportunities to write for real-life purposes, where they can experience the power of their written words and find their own writer’s voice. 

Link to Talk for Writing website for parents to find out more about the structure.  https://www.talk4writing.com/about/ 

Reading 

At Brooklands Farm, reading is at the heart of our curriculum and children are given a wealth of experiences weaved into their journey. We promote a love for reading across the school and our aim is to develop each individual as a confident, lifelong reader. Reading begins at the earliest stage when children enjoy looking at books and hearing stories being read to them. The cognitive load of the reading curriculum at Brooklands Farm is designed as a cumulative curriculum. We teach reading through two dimensions – word reading and comprehension. It is essential that teaching focuses on both dimensions- different kinds of teaching are needed for each. Our reading scheme offers high quality, supportive and enriching literature for the children to enjoy, blending seamlessly and moving on from our phonics programme. This in turn creates positive, fluent readers, who engage with different types of texts. We believe that reading should encourage a positive view of the written text as a source of pleasure as well as a valuable source of ideas and information to support all areas of the curriculum.

During comprehension, children build on knowledge learnt in previous years with the difficulty of the text increasing throughout the school. We want to create a communal approach to reading, which allows the children to enter discussions about characters and events in the text relating them to other books they have read and their own lives. Reading is weaved throughout our curriculum giving the children the opportunity to expand their vocabulary in all subjects. At Brooklands Farm we use Accelerated reader and myON to ensure and support children to have the widest range of books freely available to them and are learning and progressing in their own developmental stage. 

We want the children of Brooklands Farm to leave us as confident, fluent readers who begin their time with us by ‘learning to read’ and leave us ‘reading to learn!’

Phonics 

At Brooklands Farm Primary School we use letters and sounds (DFES) to teach children how to read. Letters and sounds gives autonomy to magpie from other high quality resources. Sounds are taught from easiest to hardest: starting with single letter sounds and then moving on to two letters making a sound and then three and so on. We follow letters and sounds teaching children through the structure of a four part lesson: review, teach, practise, apply.

National Curriculum for English