At Nelson, the children are given opportunities to talk and listen in a wide variety of creative learning activities. They are encouraged to explore, develop and explain ideas; to discuss and plan stories, poems and reports; to share their observations and opinions and to report and present their work in front of their class and in assemblies. Children are encouraged to listen to each other as well as other adults and to respect, value and learn from opinions which are different from their own. We place great value on oracy and expect the children to answer in full sentences at all times.
The children have access to a very wide variety of fiction, non-fiction and poetry all around the school and we help them to become confident readers, using methods which match the material and the purposes for which they are reading. Where relevant, we present them with challenging texts which broaden their perspectives, extend their thinking and are reflective of the diverse nature of our community. This enables children to become confident and enthusiastic readers who are engaged in their own learning journey through reading.
Teachers reading a well-chosen novel to the class is a feature of each school day. This practice enables children to experience and enjoy within a community of readers a wide repertoire of books that they might otherwise not have met.
To teach phonics, we use Little Wandle Letters and Sounds which is a government validated phonics programme. It is robustly taught and the children also receive reading sessions which focus on decoding, prosody (expression and intonation) and comprehension. Please see the separate phonics page on the website for further information.
It is our intention that our children leave with a solid tome of knowledge about literature and authors. We have very carefully selected the texts we use for our core reading spine to ensure this is the case. From Floodland in Year 6 to The Butterfly Lion in Year 4 to The Fox and the Star in Year 2, we have chosen these texts to guarantee an enriching reading experience.
Our English curriculum is based on the study and enjoyment of carefully chosen high-quality texts, using research and evidence-based approaches to increase children’s knowledge about reading and writing. Children are taught to consider authorial intent and effect on the reader, and are provided with contextualised opportunities for developing their knowledge of language and grammar. They learn how to write effectively for a range of purposes, audiences and forms, thereby raising engagement and attainment in reading and writing.
We help them to keep extending their drafting skills, their use of English and their spelling. We also give them practice in developing a good cursive style of handwriting and encourage them to present their work neatly and carefully, using technology when appropriate.