We are readers!

At Southville Primary School, we aspire to be fluent and confident readers.  We aim for pupils to become enthusiastic and critical life-long readers of stories, poetry and drama as well as non-fiction and media texts. We want our children to explore their own interests and read fluently, widely and often both at school and in their spare time.  We will give our children the foundations they need to enjoy the lifelong pleasure and necessity of being an accomplished reader.

We will do this by:

  • Teaching phonics through the systematic, synthetic phonics programme Letters and Sounds, accompanied by the musical elements of Jolly Phonics. Starting with our youngest Pre-School learners, the children will begin to develop an awareness of sound through freely chosen activities in our language-rich provision. In Reception and Key Stage One, children partake in daily synthetic phonics sessions, systematically working through the six phases of phonics progression (see below).
  • Making phonics fun, motivational and multi-sensory, using songs, games, actions and high-quality play activities.  Our phonics teaching is vital for children to quickly and effectively gain the skills to become fluent readers by the end of Key Stage One. 
  • Enabling children to develop the behaviours of a skilled reader: supporting and actively listening to others; discussing and explaining their ideas and taking responsibility for their learning. 
  • Delivering a carefully-developed program of reading provision which will provide the children with the confidence and essential skills for reading, namely: predicting, clarifying, questioning, inferring, summarising and evaluating. 
  • Providing for children, whatever their ability or needs, a curriculum which exposes all to literature which is appropriately challenging, so that they are always progressing their skills and widening their reading experiences. 
  • Promoting enjoyment, and providing modelling, of reading through the sharing and discussion of texts with their classes.
  • Helping children to understand and respond imaginatively to what they read and experience, and fostering their appreciation and enjoyment of the widest variety of challenging and ambitious high-quality literature. Using a wide range of high quality texts as an integral reading ‘spine’ within our Immersive Learning Curriculum.
  • Enabling children to be skilled at reading with confidence, fluency and understanding and to orchestrate a range of independent strategies to self - monitor and correct. They will identify the main points of a range of text types and will develop an interest in words and their meanings; this will help develop a growing vocabulary in spoken and written forms.
  • Working in close partnership with families to support the children along their reading journey, through the communication of our phonics teaching and by establishing a regular dialogue around the reading children do at home.
  • Providing weekly family reading sessions for children and adults to share their enjoyment of reading together.
  • Providing reading experiences and enrichment through workshops, themed weeks and days, library visits, working with local bookshops, author visits and book fairs.

There are six phases within the Letters and Sounds programme: –

  • Phase 1 – Activities are divided into seven aspects: Environmental Sounds, Instrumental Sounds, Body Sounds, Rhythm and Rhyme, Alliteration, Voice Sounds and finally Oral Blending and Segmenting.
  • Phase 2 – Learning 19 letters of the alphabet and one sound for each. Blending sounds together to make words. Segmenting sounds into their separate sounds. Beginning to read simple captions.
  • Phase 3 – The remaining 7 letters of the alphabet, one sound for each. Graphemes such as “ch”, “oo” and “th” representing the remaining phonemes not covered by single letters. Reading captions, sentences and questions. On completion of this phase, children will have learnt the “simple code”, i.e. one grapheme for each phoneme in the English language.
  • Phase 4 – No new grapheme-phoneme correspondences are taught in this phase. Children learn to blend and segment longer words with adjacent consonants, e.g. swim, clap, jump.
  • Phase 5 – Now we move on to the “complex code”. Children learn more graphemes for the phonemes which they already know, plus different ways of pronouncing the graphemes they already know.
  • Phase 6 – Working on spelling rules and patterns, including adding prefixes and suffixes and distinguishing between common homophones.

We are aspiring writers! 

At Southville Primary School we aspire to be effective communicators. Our literacy curriculum will inspire and equip pupils to write to entertain, to discuss, to persuade, to explain and to inform.  Literacy is the lifelong experience of using, shaping, enriching, refining and enjoying language.  We help to lay the foundations for the enjoyment and effective use of language which is so necessary for our children’s working lives and beyond.

We will do this by:

  • Providing a supportive, stimulating and secure environment where children are encouraged to express themselves and where their literacy contributions are valued. 
  • Developing children’s ability to use language to think, to explore and to communicate their ideas, both orally and in writing.  
  • Helping children to understand and respond imaginatively to what they hear, read and experience in a variety of media. 
  • Inspiring their appreciation and enjoyment of literature, sharing high quality texts as models of good writing.
  • Providing opportunities to write for a variety of purposes and audiences in a variety of styles and forms appropriate to the situation.
  • Encouraging children to use their imagination and inventiveness in their writing, as well as teaching them the subject content they need to draw on. 
  • Helping children to communicate effectively, both verbally and non-verbally, through a variety of dramatic activities, including the communication of their ideas, views and feelings.
  • Cultivating an interest in words and their meanings, developing a growing and explorative vocabulary in both spoken and written forms.
  • Developing children’s critical awareness and strategies for self-monitoring, editing and improving their own work. 
  • Setting high expectations of standards in literacy across the curriculum, recognising its importance for communicating and learning in all subjects.
  • Delivering a carefully-structured spelling program with weekly spelling lists taken from the National Curriculum, as well as vocabulary specific to the topics taught.
  • Teaching spelling strategies, patterns and rules to help children develop their independence in encoding unfamiliar words.  

Disadvantaged and minority groups

Our inclusive curriculum is designed to nurture the creativity all pupils. We facilitate a very broad range of experiences through the immersive curriculum and use these to inspire writing and creativity. For instance we do not assume the children have visited or seen Egyptian tombs. We allow the children to create and build ‘tombs’ in school, as part of the Year 4 topic (DT) and then use this ‘live’ experience, to stimulate and inform their writing.