At Our Lady of Lourdes, we believe that a quality English curriculum should develop children’s love of reading, writing and discussion. Our pupils are offered a varied and engaging curriculum to inspire them and promote new skills. The love of reading is fostered, the art of speaking and listening is promoted and the enjoyment of writing is developed. All of these help us to support our children in using literature and the world around them to further themselves. The skills we harness from our language activities facilitate our children to become valued members of the community.
Reading and writing are taught closely to ensure the children recognise the links between the two and are able to transfer their skills accordingly in all areas of the curriculum. We provide the children with exposure to quality texts, often with cross curricular links, and opportunities to explore the language and writing techniques of a range of authors. We want to inspire children to be confident in the arts of speaking and listening so that they can use discussion to develop their writing. Grammar, spelling, punctuation and handwriting are taught rigorously across the school, starting with synthetic phonics and fine motor skills to develop mark making in the Early Years Foundation Stage. All year groups follow the National Curriculum expectations for spelling through regular weekly spelling activities. This includes dictation exercises, investigations of spelling patterns and weekly spelling lists sent home for consolidation
Reading is an essential part of everyday life at Our Lady of Lourdes as we recognise that this will open the doors to all subjects for children. Across the school children have access to a wide range of high quality texts to develop learning in all curriculum areas. Reading good quality texts to the children is a priority in all year groups. The teaching of reading begins in the Early Years Foundation Stage with the synthetic teaching of phonic skills using Read Write Inc. We ensure that we adapt our sessions to meet the needs of all children in the class. From Year 1 onwards, children enjoy Reciprocal Reading sessions using high quality texts that engage the listener, develop the breath of vocabulary and support ideas for writing. In Reciprocal Reading sessions each child takes on an important role which allows them to both ask and answer higher order questions on a text, as well as discuss the ways the story makes us feel. We ensure that children are continually being encouraged to read for pleasure through events such a visiting the local library, celebrating World Book Day and enjoying bedtime stories.