English Vision statement
At Guru Nanak Sikh Academy, we believe that Literacy is a fundamental life skill and proficiency in English enables pupils to communicate effectively at home, school and in the wider world. The skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing facilitate the pupils to effectively organize and express their own thoughts in an articulate manner, in a range of real-life situations. Pupils will learn to become enthusiastic and analytical readers/writers of a variety of genres and text types including stories, poetry, plays, as well as non-fiction and media texts.
Speaking and listening
- to speak clearly, fluently and confidently to a range of audiences
- to listen to, understand and respond to other people
- to join in group discussions
- to participate in a range of drama and role-play activities
- to read with fluency, accuracy and understanding, using a range of strategies
- To develop a love for reading and read for pleasure
- to read to obtain information and further their own understanding in an area/topic
- to understand, interpret and appreciate literary and non-fiction texts
- to develop writing skills through planning, composing and editing
- to use punctuation and grammar correctly
- to create sentences and texts
- to use a range of spelling strategies
- to understand text structure and organisation
- to have an awareness of audience and purpose thus adapt writing appropriately
- to write legibly and fluently
- to understand and use Standard English
Grammar and vocabulary work is taught purposefully, in context, so that it can be used in the identified outcomes. It is taught, practised then applied using relevant activities to build upon prior knowledge and consolidate learning.
We aim to foster in all our children a love of books so that they become readers for life. Children are taught to read by a variety of methods including: phonics, learning key words, recognising sight words and using meaning. Their progress is carefully monitored and a wide range of books (fiction and non-fiction) make up our guided and individual reading schemes.
At Guru Nanak Sikh Academy, we value guided reading as a means of improving reading skills, comprehension skills and group discussion. This is done through the VIPERS model which dissects reading into the following: Vocabulary, Inference, Prediction, Explaining, Retrieval and Sequencing (KS1) or Summarising KS2). Pupils are given the opportunity to discuss these questions as part of the guided reading group and effective questioning by adults during guided reading cover the range of assessment criteria.
It is essential that children read at home as well. For some age appropriate books, please click the following link for recommended lists: https://schoolreadinglist.co.uk/
At Guru Nanak Sikh Academy, we follow the ‘Letters and Sounds’ phonics scheme, teaching children sounds and letters in a particular orders. Children are taught to segment and blend short words together, progressing to longer words, thus helping them to develop the initial reading skills. As they progress they are exposed to longer, non-decodable and ‘tricky’ words which are common in the English language (the, she, Mr, Mrs, People, sugar etc). This learning is built on throughout the year and applied in their reading and writing.
At the end of Year 1, children are assessed through the government phonics screening test.
To further familiarise yourself with the programme that we are using, please click here for a copy of Letters and Sounds:
We are very lucky to have a well-resourced and efficiently run library at Guru Nanak Sikh Academy. The borrowing section of our library is electronically logged and children can scan out their own books. We also have an extensive reference section of the library which children can use for independent research during or outside lesson time. Our librarian helps children to select books and foster a love of books within children at the school. Author displays and recommended book displays further engage the pupils making them more excited about reading and encourage them to read books by a variety of authors and wide range of genres.
Help and support
All pupils receive quality first literacy teaching on a daily basis and activities are differentiated accordingly. In addition, where identified pupils are considered to require targeted support to enable them to work towards age appropriate objectives, intervention programmes will be implemented. Some pupils are able to have the benefit of small group sessions delivered by our teachers during some assembly slots. A ‘second wave’ of support is provided where we have our learning support assistants trained to deliver various programmes.
Online Literacy Resources & Activities
These links have various child friendly websites that provide excellent, free resources. You can use these resources to support your children at home and encourage them to become independent learners. These have all been created by other schools and organisations:
Useful website links to find out more about Literacy and how you can help you child:
For an extended breakdown of the Literacy programme set by the Department of Education please see the attachment below.