Intent

At Lincoln Carlton Academy our English curriculum forms the foundations of our whole school curriculum offer. Our aim is to ensure that all of our pupils leave us with the ability to read, speak, listen and write with fluency and accuracy which will in turn open up a world of opportunity as they progress to the next stage in their learning. The English curriculum is designed to utilise connections with non-core topics being taught across school and core texts are often used as a driver for teaching in the rest of the curriculum.

Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

We know that pupils who join us in the EYFS are generally working below expectations for their age in reading and writing but their ability in the prime area of Communication and Language is good. As a consequence of this our EYFS curriculum is designed to rapidly secure progress in phonics from a very early stage using the Letters and Sounds Programme. We have chosen this phonics scheme as it provides a quick paced, progressive curriculum that secures the rapid acquisition of grapheme: phoneme correspondences (GPCs), blending to read, segmenting to spell and sight reading of non-decodable and high frequency words. Alongside the teaching of phonics we know that it is vital that children in the EYFS secure a love of literature and reading and we aim to immerse them in a huge variety of high quality texts to get them excited about their reading journey. We also know that children come to our school with poor fine motor skills and our EYFS curriculum is designed to rapidly make improvements in gross and fine motor skills through a programme of physical development.

Key Stage One and Two

The Key Stage One and Two curriculum for English is designed around a collection of high quality texts chosen to engage our pupils in a range of core fiction and non-fiction texts as well as poetry. These have been chosen carefully to ensure children are exposed to range of contemporary and classic authors, as well as different writing styles including use of archaic language, linear and non-linear sequences, simple and complex narrative and resistant texts. Texts have been deliberately chosen to be challenging and ambitious for our children, to teach them a broad range of new and exciting vocabulary and to build their cultural capital, opening their eyes to the exciting world of literature. With these texts as the bedrock for their learning in English, our children will be able to write accurately and fluently in a wide range of different genres, using the key structural, sentence level and word level features of each. These features are taught in small, progressive steps designed to build in the prior knowledge of the child.

Implementation

Reading is placed at the heart of the curriculum starting with every child in every year group hearing their teacher read a shared class text every day. Every child takes a reading book home that is closely matched to the reading ability and regularly checked and changed as appropriate.

Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

In EYFS, phonics teaching begins in the second week of the academic year after a baseline assessment has been completed. Phonics is taught daily, initially for 20 minutes but building to 30 minutes by the end of the autumn term. Phase 1 skills are taught alongside GPCs for Phase 2, blending for reading, segmenting for spelling and sight reading of high frequency and non-decodable words. Children are assessed frequently to ensure they are acquiring the knowledge and skills taught and teachers plan interventions to plug gaps where necessary. Children take a reading book home that is very closely matched to their ability to in phonics and this is assessed regularly as the child progresses. They also take a library book home to encourage them to read for pleasure with a familiar adult at home. Teachers read to their class daily and opportunities for reading and writing are made available for children to access during child-initiated learning.

Key Stage One and Two

The daily teaching of discrete phonics continues into Key Stage One until pupils are confidently and fluently reading age appropriate texts. Reading is taught daily in addition to this, either as a whole class reading lesson or when a core text is used as a driver for a writing lesson. Teachers expertly interweave the teaching of reading and writing around the core texts to support children to build an in-depth knowledge of the text and genre over time but also develop the skills required to competent readers and writers including grammar, punctuation and spelling. Summative and formative assessment techniques are used to regularly check what children are able to remember and apply to their learning. Any gaps that are identified are addressed promptly through quality first teaching or interventions.

Impact

When children leave Lincoln Carlton Academy to continue their educational journey they will:

• Have fond memories of the stories and poems they have shared with their teachers and friends.

• Be excited about reading and choose to read for pleasure.

• Be fluent, confident and passionate readers and writers who are able to express themselves accurately and effectively.

• Have a sound knowledge of our literary heritage and have been exposed to a wide range of contemporary and classic texts.

• Have developed a wide and varied vocabulary that they can use in their spoken language and in their writing.