English at Minet Junior School
At Minet Junior School, one of our key priorities is to establish and nurture a lifelong love of reading in our children; that they can use and enjoy texts for a range of purposes throughout their lives.
read for pleasure as well as study
read a wide range, including media and online texts and texts from a variety of cultures and traditions
develop the ability to understand layers of meaning
learn to respond critically to what they read
explore meanings of text through drama
promote a love of reading by modeling engagement with a variety of texts
equip children with the skills they need to read with literal and inferential understanding
introduce children to texts that capture their imagination and encourage critical thinking (having a good knowledge of children’s literature)
provide a range of meaningful opportunities for children to engage with texts
In our school, all children are taught reading skills in Guided Reading sessions every day. During these sessions, tasks are set for the children to encourage a greater depth of understanding. In these lessons ‘the Power of Reading’ strategy is used so that high-quality texts are used as a model for pupils to develop their skills and understanding. It is during this time that adults and children can embark on the journey of a story together, discussing and comparing their responses. Non –fiction texts are also used so that our pupils receive a broad and balanced English curriculum.
Home Reading and Reading for Pleasure
This should be recorded in their Reading Diary, which should be checked weekly by an adult in school. Children are taught how to select appropriate texts for their level of understanding, and this should be monitored by adults in In our school, it is an expectation of children that they read at home for a minimum of 20 minutes every day.school.
High-quality texts are used at the heart of our English curriculum, and teachers plan for meaningful writing outcomes. Core texts are used to provide contexts for these writing outcomes. Units typically last 2/3 weeks and are split into different lesson types:
Immersion in the text type. The objectives covered in this phase enable the children to become familiar with the features of the writing outcome they are working towards.
During these lessons, the objectives covered equip the children with a meaningful context for their writing outcome. There are often drama activities in order to encourage. Context/SPAG tools the children to explore perspectives for their writing outcome. It is also necessary to teach discrete SPAG (Spelling, Punctuation, and Grammar) objectives so that children are able to apply this in their independent writing.
Writing. These lessons cover the entire writing process, including writing, self or peer assessing, editing, improving, redrafting and publishing.
All classrooms at our school have an English Learning Wall which provides scaffolds and models for the pupils’ writing, including examples of relevant and rich vocabulary; models of a range of sentence types and shared or modeled examples of the quality written outcome that the children are working towards. The learning walls are updated continuously over the course of a writing unit to support our pupils’ learning. All classes also have a publishing wall to share the children’s finished pieces of work.
We believe that speaking and listening is a fundamental part of learning in English, and therefore children of all ages are provided with opportunities to participate in a range of different drama-based/discussion activities in lessons.
We value the role of drama in our curriculum in enabling children to explore a range of perspectives and communicate ideas effectively, as well as working collaboratively with peers. We strive to ensure that children learn in a safe and engaging environment, in which they can feel comfortable and confident to share their ideas and take risks in their learning.
Cursive handwriting is taught and encouraged throughout the school. When pupils are able to write fluently they are awarded a pen license.