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St John's C of E Middle School Academy

English - Key Stage 2

English – the subject at the heart of the National Curriculum – is taught by our specialist teachers with dynamic enthusiasm. Our aim is to develop knowledgeable readers and writers that are inquisitive, full of confidence and overflowing with creativity. We have high standards and expectations for all pupils.

Our flexible curriculum is based around the needs of the children. After investigating a text, pupils have opportunities to develop their reading comprehension skills and glean effective techniques for their own writing. Teacher demonstration follows – a process that the class are very much involved with – and then supported and independent writing. In addition, there are two lessons of spelling, grammar and punctuation.

Reading

From the hot, oppressive jungles of ‘The Firework Maker’s Daughter’ to the grey, Welsh playgrounds of Roald Dahl’s youth in ‘Boy: Tales of Childhood’, pupils read a wide selection of fiction, non-fiction and poetry throughout Key Stage 2. Two lessons a week are given over to ‘guided reading’ where pupils can explore a text in detail and practise their reading comprehension skills. Pupils are encouraged to read at home and complete a reading record.

Writing

As Key Stage 2 progresses, pupils are taught to write with more awareness of the reader. Pupils will write to engage using the characteristics of different fiction genres, they will produce biased and balanced arguments, the children will develop an authentic journalistic style and write for many other different purposes. All staff follow the National Curriculum informed medium term plans whilst still delivering personalised, individual lessons.

Speaking & Listening

A speaking and listening task is built into each unit of work. During Year 5 and Year 6, the children will take part in role plays, hot seating, debates and discussions. They will look at the performance of poetry and be involved in mock news reports and advertising campaigns. The pupils will learn how to speak clearly, expressively and with purpose. They will also adapt their performance for a specific audience – engaging people with their body language as well as their voice.

Spelling, Grammar and Punctuation

This is taught in a fun, creative way that gets pupils to clarify the meaning of texts. The lessons aim to get children thinking about the effectiveness of the language they use and how punctuation is essential when communicating with a reader.

Assessment

Pupils are constantly monitored to ensure that progress is being made. Writing is assessed most weeks and a formal reading test takes place every term. We aim to act quickly if a pupil is not making expected progress and offer them suitable interventions.

Enrichment

There are regular trips to the theatre throughout the two years. In addition, we welcome local theatre groups into the school to perform. In Year 6, the children have an opportunity to join the school newspaper and get experience of working creatively as part of a team working to a deadline. For those that have an interest in performing, there is a weekly drama club that takes place after school. Many of these pupils will be involved in the school’s annual play which is always incredibly popular.