At Harris Primary Academy Chafford Hundred learning English is our highest priority. We believe that learning to read, write and communicate effectively underpins all learning. We provide opportunities for children to view reading as an enjoyable and meaningful activity as well as enabling them to develop their comprehension, inference and thinking skills.
All our children have daily English lesson. There are daily opportunities to practice and enjoy reading including in our structured reading lessons (when all children read independently, as a group or with the teacher every day). Reading occurs at other times of the day too e.g. we strongly promote reading and writing across the curriculum so children have a sense of purpose and can apply their learning.
We teach all our children to become effective communicators, working with them on their speaking skills in a range of contexts so that they can express themselves with clarity and confidence. Our staff value the importance of speech and language development and are supported to articulate clearly with close attention to accurate grammar and pronunciation in speech at all times od the school day.
Writing is always underpinned by experience and creativity. Our children are motivated writers who enjoy the process of creating stories, poems and a range of non-fiction texts. We believe that children shoudl be able to speak and write fluently so they can communicate their ideas clearly. At Harris Primary Academy Chafford Hundred, we want our children to be creative writers who read for pleasure, as well as information. Children learn a wide range of vocabulary and knowledge linguistic conventions for reading, writing and the spoken language.
At Harris Primary Academy Chafford Hundred, grammar teaching is a core element of our English curriculum. The characteristics of spoken language are very different from written language. Writing needs to be more concise and explicit, whereas spoken language often relies on context, facial expression, intonation and pause and gesture to convey meaning and create effect. As part of grammar study, it is important that children learn the conventions of Standard English so that they can adopt an appropriate level of formality in their writing appropriate to audience and purpose.
At Harris Primary Academy Chafford Hundred, we believe that phonics should be taught in an engaging and systematic way, using a multi-sensory approach to our youngest children. The Read, Write Inc. (RWI) programme enables us to do this. Further information on the RWI programme can be found here.
In order to accelerate pupil’s progress, we have parent workshops that help adults at home to understand how we teach early reading and writing skills. This enables adults at home to support their children when listening to their children read their home reading book each day, as well as practising the reading and spelling of high frequency words. Parents can use resources on the RWI parent page to support their child's learning at home.
By Year 2, most children can read and write a wide range of graphemes (the letter or letters that match a sound in English). Children then move onto a reading comprehension programme.
Reading at our Academy
We have a fantastic home-reading scheme, where children choose their own book according to their stage of reading and what interests them. A selection of books is kept in each classroom and children choose their own books from this baskets. Books are regularly swapped around so that there are more books to choose from.
We also have a range of topic books and class author books that children can borrow from the classroom. This is in addition to the home-reading scheme and is to broaden the children’s knowledge of authors and topic related texts.
Reading at Home
All children at our school are to read for 10 minutes at home every evening. Reading records allow children and parents to record comments about how well and how often reading has taken place. These are signed and brought into school every day so that staff in the class can do the same.