In KS1 and KS2, children follow the national curriculum by creating writing which showcases a range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry. Writing is closely linked to topic, as children create pieces of literature which reflect their learning across the curriculum. By using carefully selected class readers, which are referred to in each writing lesson, children are then able to highlight language that has made an impact on them, as well as key geographical and historical knowledge which enables young writers to build intricate plots and characters. SpaG is also taught through writing, as children explicitly learn a grammar technique and then understand how to use these writer’s techniques to manipulate sentence structure and control their flow of thought.
Our pathway is as follows:
Immersion: children focus on powerful language, looking at key texts and considering the features of genres.
Plan: children draft key ideas that they would like to include in their writing, with a close focus on grammatical techniques and sentence starters.
Write: children use their plan to write, with a specific focus on expanding their ideas when planning into structured and detailed sentences. Writing lessons also ensure that children are using a variety of punctuation for both accuracy and effect on the reader. Children are then encouraged to stop and re-read as they are writing to ensure that they have the technique to proof read and spot their own errors.
Edit: children re-draft their writing, with the direction of detailed teacher marking. Through the use of collaboration and modelled communication, children are then given a variety of opportunities to work closely with their peers to improve each other’s work as well as their own.
Publish: children publish cycles of work which are based around drama and performance. This enables children to work on their drama skills and to think carefully about key executional skills, such as: intonation, volume and movement. It also encourages children to listen and respond to their peers questions and answers about their compositions.
Independent write: following a completed cycle, children are then encouraged to create a piece of writing, which closely links to the work of their previous cycle. This enables children to showcase their independent strengths and needs, whilst allowing the teacher to set individualised targets for the following cycle.
Spelling and Handwriting
We teach children to use a continuous cursive style of handwriting. They start with individual letter formation and correct pencil grip in EYFS. Children begin to join when their letter formation is secure; usually, from the end of Year 1. In Establishment phases, children across the school continue to practise handwriting and are rewarded across the curriculum for neat, cursive presentation.
We use the Headstart spelling programme from Year 1 through to Year 6. This programme focuses on spelling rules, where children are encouraged to partition the word into its root word and then apply the appropriate rule. Four rules are taught simultaneously over the course of four weeks, with a practise spelling test taking place weekly and a formal spelling test taking place at the end of the four week spelling period.