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English Curriculum


At The John Moore Primary School we provide our pupils with a high-quality education in English that will teach them to speak, read and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others effectively.  


We encourage and inspire all pupils to read widely across both fiction and non-fiction to develop their knowledge of themselves and the world in which they live, to establish an appreciation and love of reading, to gain knowledge across the curriculum and develop their comprehension skills. It is our intention to ensure that, by the end of their primary education, all pupils will be excellent communicators and will be able to speak, read and write fluently, and with confidence, in any subject in their forthcoming secondary education. 


As a school, we believe that all pupils should be able to confidently communicate their knowledge, ideas and emotions both orally and through their writing. We want pupils to acquire a wide vocabulary, a solid understanding of grammar and be able to spell new words by effectively applying the spelling strategies they learn throughout their time in primary school. We want them to communicate (orally and in writing) clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences. We believe that all pupils should be encouraged to take pride in the presentation of their writing and strive for perfect presentation. We believe that all good writers refine and edit their writing over time, so we support our children to develop independence and strive to be able to identify their own areas for improvement in all pieces of writing, editing their work effectively during and after the writing process. We do not put ceilings on what pupils can achieve in writing and we do not hold pre-conceptions about any pupils’ ability to make progress.  


We celebrate the children’s successes weekly with readers and writers of the week in our sparkle assemblies. We understand the importance of parents and carers in supporting their children to develop grammar, spelling and composition skills, and therefore we encourage a home-school partnership which enables parents and carers to understand how to enhance the skills being taught in school. 


We provide opportunities for children to speak and perform for a variety of audiences.  Within class, children have opportunities to express their ideas, build on or challenge the ideas of others, explore ideas through role play, participate in discussions and debates and present their work orally. Children have an opportunity to perform for a wider audience through Harvest and Christmas Celebrations, Oracy Competitions, Class Plays and Poetry recitals.  


To achieve our aims we follow: 



Talk for Writing: 

Talk for Writing enables children to internalize the key language they need for a particular topic orally before they try reading and analysing it. Through focussed activities that help them rehearse the tune of the language they need, followed by shared writing to show them how to craft their writing, children are supported to use the structure of the original text and the focus toolkit to create their own texts. The structure of our writing units is: 

  1. Cold task - (completed at least one week prior to the start of the unit to ensure that targets can be generated and planning tailored to meet the children’s specific learning needs).  

  1. Creative Hook - used to excite the children and engage them into the writing journey.  

  1. Model Text introduced with a story/text map to support the learning –which has been tailored in light of the cold task. 

  1. Vocabulary focus – vocabulary is discussed with children at every opportunity, exemplified and put into context. Vocabulary is displayed around the environment.  

  1. Oral retelling and immersion of the text  

  1. Sentence level skills work - Short bursts writing linked to devices highlighted from targets. 

  1. Comprehension - reading as a reader to understand the text. Use the Aidan Chambers ‘Book Talk Grids’ to shape the discussion about the text e.g. likes, dislikes, puzzles and patterns.  

  1. |identifying the underlying structure of the text (Boxing up) 

  1. Sentence level skills work - Short bursts writing linked to vocabulary, grammar or text structure highlighted from targets. 

  1. Innovation - pupils make changes to the text. They learn, rehearse and write a new version of the text.  

  1. Independent application – Pupils must have the opportunity to independently apply the skills they have learnt in English and whenever possible be given the opportunity to apply these skills across the curriculum.  

  1. Publishing and celebrating: Children are encouraged to show case their sparkling work through different publishing and presenting opportunities. We have a central published work display board as well as regular corridor displays of children’s writing.  We also provide children opportunities to share their sparkling work with a wider audience (blogging, reading aloud to an author at Cheltenham Literacy Festival Reading Teachers event). 

  1. Invention – Children will be given termly opportunities to plan and write in their chosen genre in response to a given stimulus.  


Phonics/ Spelling  

Phonics is taught using the Sounds~Write programme.  This programme places an emphasis on focussing on the sounds heard in words.  Sounds are only ever taught within the context of words. The programme begins with the sounds in the language and moves from the sounds to the written word.  Teachers and teaching partners delivering this programme follow a set of structured lesson plans ensuring that there is a consistency in delivery across the school.  The programme introduces single sounds and some digraphs in the initial code and the extended code teaches alternative spellings and polysyllabic words.  

In EYFS and KS1 the teaching of phonics is whole class throughout the year.  Children requiring additional input in this area may receive extra intervention from the class teacher or teaching partner to supplement their daily phonics lesson. 


In KS2 we use the Sounds-Write lessons and techniques (extended code and polysyllabic word lessons) to deliver our spelling programme (No Nonsense Spelling) focusing on the National Curriculum words as well as cross curricular words.  

In Years 3 and 4 we continue with a 20 minute phonics session revising all of the code while also introducing longer words and cross curricular words.  In Year 3 teachers should start from unit 1 of the extended code but should incorporate more spellings of the sound (e.g. unit 1 in conjunction with unit 27).   In Years 3 and 4 teachers will plan to work through units at a rate of one per week per unit.  In Year 4 teachers will repeat all the code again spending a week per unit and introducing words needed for the wider curriculum. 


In Years 5 and 6 spelling sessions continue using the Sounds-Write approach  The teaching of prefixes, suffixes and morphology can also be covered using the Sounds-Write lessons 

Teachers will adapt their planning to address specific spelling issues as they arise.  


Grammar and Punctuation 

High quality grammar and punctuation teaching is contextualised and is taught to enable the pupils to adapt their writing to create an effect on the reader.  

Grammar and punctuation are usually taught as part of the T4W unit and model texts are adapted to ensure specific grammar and punctuation are included.  Very occasionally, some grammar and punctuation teaching may be taught discretely if a link to the text cannot be made.  


We follow Sue Palmer’s, ‘The Write Path’.  Cursive writing is introduced in EYFS and developed throughout the school. All children strive to achieve perfect presentation.  Once children become proficient and consistent at using our cursive style we celebrate their achievement by awarding them a pen licence.  All teachers model our cursive style when writing for the children and we use a cursive font for printed sheets and displays.  


Talk for Reading  

The Talk for Reading whole class approach enables children in the class to all access the same high quality texts and extracts that form the basis of the reading teaching, therefore providing all pupils with the same opportunity to sparkle and soar in their reading. Texts will include fiction, poetry and non-fiction. Before delving deeply in the chosen texts, children will explore the key vocabulary picked out the by teacher to further understand its meaning and put it into context and consider key decoding strategies that can assist them when reading. Through our Talk for Reading approach, children will have: 


Challenge: Children will have high expectations of what they can achieve through individual access to a rich variety of essential reads from our reading spine. 

New Skills: Children will be immersed into new vocabulary that is exemplified and put into context. 

De-coding skills: Teachers will model decoding strategies so that children know how to tackle new or unknown words.   

Breadth, depth and accuracy in their responses to reading:  Talk for Reading will give opportunities for deep questioning and discussion surrounding the reading. 

Feedback: Teachers will give verbal and written feedback to reading to inform the children of their progress.  


Intended impact 

  • Pupils will be excellent communicators.  

  • Pupils will be fluent readers.  Year 6 readers, transitioning into secondary school, will be fluent, confident and able readers, who can access a range of texts for pleasure and enjoyment, as well as use their reading skills to unlock learning and all areas of the curriculum 

  • Pupils will enjoy writing and be effective writers across a range of genres. 

  • Pupils of all abilities will be able to succeed in all English lessons because work will be appropriately scaffolded.  

  • Pupils will have a wide vocabulary that they use within their writing. 

  • Pupils will have a good knowledge of how to adapt their writing based on the context and audience. 

  • Pupils will leave primary school being effective writers, who are aware of and write to engage their audience. 

  • The % of pupils working at ARE within each year group will be at least in line with national averages. 

  • The % of pupils working at Greater Depth within each year group will be at least in line with national averages. 

  • The will be no significant gaps in the progress of different groups of pupils (e.g. disadvantaged vs non-disadvantaged) 

Home Readers at The John Moore Primary School 

Your child will be sent home with a reading book within the first couple of weeks at School. These initially will start as pictures books and story sacks before moving on to books with words in. We have a range of books on offer to our children and we encourage them to start to change their book regularly and independently as they move from Reception into Key Stage 1.

Home reading books are sent home to be shared together and at a comfortable reading level. We encourage children, with the support of their parents, to record what they have read in their home reading record.

We have books from the Dandelion Reading Scheme, Oxford Reading Tree and Project X for children to take home. As children finish these books they move on to selecting books from their classroom book case.

Key Documents 

English National Curriculum Programme of Study 

The John Moore Primary School English Curriculum Map

Handwriting Formation (Reception Guidance)

Sounds - Write Website

My Super Writing Pack (Reception Guidance)

Sounds Write - Parent Help Leaflet

Sounds Write Phonics Pack (Reception Guidance)

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