Writing at Ladybridge Primary School
The needs and backgrounds of our children, and the school’s core values underpin all areas of our curriculum.
At Ladybridge, we believe that all pupils should be able to confidently communicate their knowledge, ideas and emotions through their writing. Pupils acquire a wide range of vocabulary, a solid understanding of grammar and be able to spell new words by effectively applying the spelling patterns and rules they learn throughout their time in primary school. They write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences. We believe that all pupils should be encouraged to take pride in the presentation of their writing, in part by developing a good, joined, handwriting style by the time they move to secondary school. Good writers refine and edit their writing over time; children develop independence by being able to identify their own areas for improvement in all pieces of writing, editing their work effectively during and after the writing process. Our belief is that all children can aim high and make good progress or achieving greater depth. We understand the importance of parents and carers in supporting their children to develop grammar, spelling and composition skills, and so we want to encourage a home-school partnership which enables parents and carers to understand how to enhance the skills being taught in school.
Classroom organisation: In EYFS, Year 1, Year 2 (where necessary), children are taught using the Read Write Inc. scheme of work. The children write every day, rehearsing what they want to say, before spelling the words using the graphemes and ‘tricky’ words. They practise handwriting every day. Children’s composition is developed by drawing on their own experiences and talking about the stories they read. We teach English as whole class lessons from Year 2 – Year 6. This is so that all children have access to the age-related skills and knowledge contained in the National Curriculum. Within lessons, teachers target support for the children who aren’t making the expected progress to enable them to achieve at an age-related level wherever possible. This may involve a greater level of scaffolding and access to additional support materials such as word-banks or a greater level of modelling. Children who are making more than the expected progress are given opportunities to extend their writing in a variety of ways, including through showing greater control in their writing, a deeper understanding of the impact that their writing has on the reader and by using a higher level of vocabulary and grammar features. This is shown through a ‘chilli challenge’ approach in the success criteria. Working Walls are used effectively to provide prompts and ideas, without too much guidance and scaffolding.
Spellings: Spellings are taught according to the rules and words contained in Appendix 1 of the English National Curriculum. Children are given spellings to learn each week and are given a spelling test the following week. When marking work, teachers identify words that children have spelt incorrectly from within that child’s known ability and they write these on a spelling tab at the back of their English book for the child. Children are then encouraged to identify these incorrect spellings in their own writing and correct them.
Grammar and Punctuation: Grammar and punctuation knowledge and skills are taught discreetly through English lessons. Teachers plan to teach the required skills through the genres of writing that they are teaching, linking it to the genre to make it more connected with the intended writing outcome.
English Lesson Sequence: We use the ‘Writing for a Purpose’ Document which ensures a spread of writing genres throughout the year groups, as well as a progression of skills. These have been planned to ensure correct coverage of the key genres as well as build on skills from year to year. During the WARM write stage, children edit their work after structured grammatical input. Each year group have a yearly overview of the writing genres, both narrative and non-fiction, that will be taught. Units will usually take three weeks to complete, and the outcome of each unit will be a HOT Write which will be used to assess the pupil’s skills against the agreed success criteria. Individual assessment sheets for each pupil are used with clear objectives for each year group, linked to end of year expectations – there is also a section for greater depth writers. Teachers use these at the end of a cycle of writing, when the HOT write has been completed. A WAGOLL – What a good one looks like – is created based on the stimulus text and supports pupils to identify and mimic the identified features in their own writing.
Marking and Feedback: Feedback and marking should be completed, where possible, within the lesson. All marking and feedback is given in line with our marking and feedback policy.
Summative Assessment: Summative assessments will be entered onto the tracker each half term. Teachers will use their professional judgement to determine whether a child is working within age-related expectations, above or below. They will base their judgements on the quality of the HOT write that pupils produce at the end of each unit, and determine to what extent pupils have met the agreed success criteria for that genre of writing. Teachers will refer to the TAFS in Y2 and Y6 and the TAFs that have been developed for other year groups as a support for making judgements and to inform planning.
Pupils will be skilled writers who enjoy writing across a range of genres, they will write fluently in all curriculum areas for a range of different purposes. Pupils of all abilities will be able to succeed in all English lessons because work will be appropriately scaffolded. Pupils will have a wide range of vocabulary that they use within their writing. Pupils will have a good knowledge of how to adapt their writing based on the context and audience. Pupils will leave primary school being able to effectively apply spelling rules and patterns they have been taught. Parents and carers will have a good understanding of how they can support spelling, grammar and composition at home. The percentages of pupils working at ARE within each year group will be at least in line with national averages. The percentages of pupils working at Greater Depth within each year group will be at least in line with national averages. There will be no significant gaps in the progress of different groups of pupils (e.g. disadvantaged, SEND, EAL.)