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We are committed to nurturing a love of reading and developing young writers. We place a strong emphasis on writing and reading for pleasure.

At Yerbury, English lessons incorporate an even balance of writing, reading and speaking and listening. These elements, as well as word level work, grammar and phonics, are taught naturally with links to the relevant framework unit and to the termly topic wherever possible. Children are encouraged to use speaking and listening time, as well as independent planning time, to support and improve their written work. Where necessary, spelling and handwriting are taught independently and systematically to improve skills. Throughout Key Stage 1 children are systematically taught phonics and handwriting while all year groups have tricky words and spelling patterns each week to bolster knowledge of medium – high frequency words and unusual phonemes.

In the Foundation Stage, Communication Language and english is integrated into all activities, with children given the chance to express language for communication and language for thinking in a wide range of situations and in both child-led and adult-structured conversations. Through their activities, children have ample opportunity to show their ability to link sounds to letters, to read, write and practise handwriting. Children in the Foundation Stage are also exposed to a wide range of stories and are given the chance to listen to stories regularly.

Reading

At Yerbury School we have a very strong commitment to the development and enjoyment of reading for all children. Children are taught and encouraged to use a range of strategies to learn to read and to continue to develop towards, and beyond, fluency. As a vital aspect of the overall development of reading, children at Yerbury develop a very strong phonetical awareness. Synthetic phonics is taught systematically and rigorously starting in Nursery or Reception. The school has adopted Letters and Sounds as its primary resource but this is supplemented (often by Jolly Phonics) where necessary. Extra input is given for children for whom phonetical awareness, or indeed an aspect of reading, is more difficult. Yerbury does not follow a prescribed reading scheme. There are various interventions for children who need more support with any aspect of reading at all ages. There is a very strong commitment to reading for pleasure and in the autonomy of children to select books discerningly. Multi-modal texts are promoted throughout the school as are texts for a diverse range of purposes by a diverse range of authors. There is a very strong commitment to engaging parents with reading at Yerbury School. All children will read with their teacher at least once a week and until children are fluent, the teacher will write to parents in their PACT book. Adults at home are strongly encouraged to read with their children every day and to write to the teacher at least once a week.

Children at Yerbury will learn 

  • The pleasure and importance of communicating effectively both in spoken and written forms.
  • To become enthusiastic, fluent and critical readers of a range of materials.
  • To participate effectively in individual, group and whole class discussions, enabling them to listen carefully to the ideas of others and to express themselves creatively and imaginatively.
  • To develop a broad vocabulary, with accurate spelling and correct punctuation and grammar.
  • To write in different styles, to suit a range of purposes and a range of audiences.
  • To write in a legible, joined style with fluency and speed.
  • To appreciate the structure of Standard English, in both the spoken and written forms and to understand the need for formal language in certain circumstances and settings.

As much as possible, these skills are implemented as standard across the curriculum.

Parents are actively involved in children’s learning of English through

  • Promoting the use of the P.A.C.T. reading scheme (Parents and Children and Teachers Together) to create a regular dialogue between home and school generally with regard to reading.
  • Meetings and workshops for parents to help them support their children at home.
  • Open invitation to class assemblies as well as whole school assemblies.
  • Regular English homework.
  • Parental involvement during Book Week.
  • The Parent Volunteer Reading Scheme – parents read on a weekly basis with children who would benefit from a greater one-to-one input with their reading.