Our Writing Curriculum
At Horbling Brown’s, we aim to produce writers who can express ideas and emotions for a wide range of purposes and audiences. Though high-quality class texts and engaging experiences children are inspired to write imaginative, informative or persuasive texts. We aim for children to have a wide range of high-level vocabulary and an appreciation of the nuances of the English language which they can apply in English, and across other curricula.
We aim to build a writing community in classrooms from EYFS to Upper Key Stage 2, and deploy a consistent approach to the teaching and learning of writing, whether the pupils be writing to teach, persuade/influence, entertain, reflect or make records.
The school values of ‘courage’ and ‘hope’ can be seen as drivers for the curriculum as we encourage children to have the courage to strive for excellence in writing and have hope that timely feedback will help them to improve their writing.
We aim to help children to become successful and confident writers by embedding handwriting, spelling grammar and editing throughout each year group. Successes are celebrated and errors are seen as a positive step on a learning journey.
At Brown's Church of England Primary School, we develop writing skills so that our pupils have the stamina and ability to write independently at the age expected standard. To support children in moving towards independent writing, we provide a wide range of activities. Where appropriate, teachers will use texts which relate to the topic being covered. However, we take pride in allowing children to access a range of texts some of which are not linked to their current topic. In addition to novels, staff will also use film and imagery as a stimulus for writing.
This stimulus is then supported by a progressive learning journey through features, skills and drafting. Children will complete an analysis of the stimulus and author features by reading and investigating the text and genre being used in the unit as well as the identification of purpose, audience and form. The teaching of the knowledge and skills required for the genre of writing, including punctuation, grammar, language choices, structure and layout are some of the areas which may be explored and replicated by children. This will lead to discussions and experimentation of the skills in context. This part of the writing journey will be supported through lots of modelled writing, shared writing, guided writing and extended writes. An extended writing piece will be undertaken after the children have explored and gained all the skills necessary to make their own controlled writing choices, focusing on a particular writing purpose. At this stage, children will draft, edit and assess their own work; they will also use peer editing and discussion to ensure children have every opportunity to write at their very best. Throughout the writing process, handwriting skills and practice are incorporated. Each week, from Year 1 upwards, children are taught using the Letterjoin programme to ensure children receive plenty of opportunity to practise and refine handwriting.
Our children at Brown's have a daily spelling session. In Key Stage One, this begin by exploring common exception words before progressing on to the Spelling Shed Scheme in Key Stage Two. This is a robust and systematic programme which reflects the requirements of the new National Curriculum. Every child is given a spelling list that is sent home weekly. At the end of every 12-week term, there is a review of children’s understanding and retention of spelling rules and skills. Throughout the spelling programme, children are taught strategies to enable them to:
- Spell accurately and identify reasons for misspelt words
- Proof-read their spelling
- Recognise and use word origins, families, roots, knowledge of prefixes and suffixes and spelling rules to build upon these skills.
- Use dictionaries, thesauruses and spellchecks.
The importance of English is emphasised throughout school in all areas of the curriculum. To promote this further, a range of extra activities are used to highlight English within the school including World Book Day, Book Fairs, Reading Pledges and author visits. In addition to this, a range of incentives are used across the key stages to engage and enthuse children in reading and writing