At Front Lawn we have decided to implement a whole class approach to reading. We aim to ensure that children become analytical readers, have an awareness of authorial intent and can justify and explain their own opinions.
Adopting this approach also allows all children to comprehend above their word reading ‘level’. It is expected that all of our children will develop good levels of comprehension. Good comprehension draws from linguistic knowledge (in particular of vocabulary and grammar) and on knowledge of the world.
We believe that the best way to develop comprehension skills is through pupils’ experience of high-quality discussion with the teacher, as well as from reading and discussing a range of stories, poems and nonfiction. With the new National Curriculum split into three key areas: Reading for Pleasure, Vocabulary Development and Oral Comprehension, a whole class approach to reading will enable children to develop their skills within each of these. All children will be given the opportunity to read aloud, listen to a text read by a teacher or peer and develop their ability to be able to discuss what they have heard in a constructive way. Unfamiliar vocabulary will be explored and explained within a familiar context, ensuring a breadth and depth to their reading as well as enhancing their enjoyment.
Discussion about high quality literature is expected from the beginning of their school life at Front Lawn and the quality of their contribution to these discussions and the evaluations that proceed will develop throughout their time with us, with teachers ensuring that this is always to a high standard. We expect our staff to model high expectations of discussion, an enjoyment and pleasure in reading and a desire to learn and experiment with new and unfamiliar vocabulary.
Sounds-Write is a quality first phonics programme and is acknowledged by the DfE as meeting all its criteria for an effective phonics teaching programme. Sounds-Write offers teachers a structure for the teaching of phonics that is cumulative, sequential, explicit and code-oriented. It places equal weighting on both reading and spelling
The introduction of Sounds-Write has seen our Year 1 Phonics results increase from 42% (2014) to 81% (2016).
Front Lawn Primary Academy is a storytelling school. We use Talk for Writing to teach our children.
We believe that ‘Imitation is the first step towards mastery—writers find their literary voice through replicating the voice and style of other writers. The easiest way to learn anything is to do it the way a master does’ (Andy Griffiths, Mark Burns)
Talk for Writing enables children to imitate the key language they need for a particular topic orally before they try reading and analysing it. We teach all of our English through fun activities that help them rehearse the tune of the language they need, followed by shared writing to show them how to craft their writing. This enables them to choose the writer tools they want to use in their independent writing, which in turn helps them to develop their own literacy voice.
All of our writing is taught with a clear audience and purpose in mind.