The teaching of English is at the heart of curriculum provision at Barclay. Children learn how to read, write and spell in Literacy and Phonics lessons in the morning and afternoon. Literacy is integrated across the school curriculum, and we provide our pupils with opportunities to develop core communication skills in every lesson, regardless of the subject
Children have a daily Literacy lesson focusing on the development of key writing skills including grammar, handwriting and spelling. Each term, children focus on a range of genres and text types, which are taught as two-week units. Children learn how to write within the context of these genres, developing an understanding of key features related to text organisation, sentence structure and use of vocabulary. Teachers will use a variety of exciting events, books and authors as a stimulus for writing, making links with topics and other areas of the curriculum.
Guided reading is taught every day, and each group reads with the teacher at least once a week. Children are also read to on a frequent basis to familiarise them with story language and ideas for their own writing. Additional reading support is delivered by learning support assistants and advanced skills teachers.
To help children develop their fluency and comprehension skills, we believe that it is vital that children have opportunities to practise their reading at home. We use the Rigby Independent home-reading programme to support children in the early stages of reading, while more competent readers take home chapter books and are able to take online quizzes, as part of the Accelerated Reader programme, to develop their comprehension skills.
The Phonics programme that we use is called Letters and Sounds for pupils in EYFS; Year 1 have a daily phonics session. We use the Letters and Sounds programme to help children develop their blending and segmenting skills. If a child is not able to blend or segment at an appropriate level (as defined by the Government's phonics screening test) by the end of Year 1, they receive additional focused support until they reach the required expected level of knowledge and understanding.