Writing Curriculum Statement
‘The programmes of study for writing at key stages 1 and 2 are constructed similarly to those for reading:
• transcription (spelling and handwriting)
• composition (articulating ideas and structuring them in speech and writing)
It is essential that teaching develops pupils’ competence in these 2 dimensions. In addition, pupils should be taught how to plan, revise and evaluate their writing. These aspects of writing have been incorporated into the programmes of study for composition.
Writing down ideas fluently depends on effective transcription: that is, on spelling quickly and accurately through knowing the relationship between sounds and letters (phonics) and understanding the morphology (word structure) and orthography (spelling structure) of words. Effective composition involves articulating and communicating ideas, and then organising them coherently for a reader. This requires clarity, awareness of the audience, purpose and context, and an increasingly wide knowledge of vocabulary and grammar. Writing also depends on fluent, legible and, eventually, speedy handwriting’. National Curriculum.
At St Clare’s we strive to help our pupils develop into articulate and imaginative communicators, who are well-equipped with the basic skills they need to become life-long learners; English learning is key in this. We aim to ensure all of our pupils develop a genuine love of language and the written word, through a text-based approach.
We recognise the importance of nurturing a culture where pupils take pride in their writing, where they can write clearly and accurately and adapt their language and style for a range of contexts. We want to inspire pupils to be confident in the art of speaking and listening and who can use discussion to communicate and further their understanding to aid their writing.
We believe that pupils need to develop a secure knowledge-base in Literacy, which follows a clear pathway of progression as they advance through the primary curriculum. We believe that a secure basis in literacy skills is crucial to a high quality education and will give our children the tools they need to participate fully as a member of society.
Careful links are made across the curriculum to ensure that pupils’ English learning is relevant and meaningful: where possible linking our reading, writing and topic. We ensure that pupils develop an understanding of how widely writing is used in everyday life and, therefore, how important and useful the skills are that they are learning.
Our intentions in writing are for pupils to:
• Write for a purpose
• See themselves as real writers
• Take ownership of their writing
• See writing as an interesting and enjoyable process
• Acquire the ability to organise and plan their written work
• Edit and review their writing
In line with the National Curriculum, we ensure that pupils in each year group are taught the explicit grammar, punctuation and spelling objectives required for their key stage.
Teachers plan writing based on the Pathways to Write from The Literacy Company; these plans are linked to high quality texts which show clear progression through the different year groups and ensure engaging and purposeful English lessons. Our lessons are enriched by exposing the pupils to ‘Big Writes’ using exciting stimulus to aid interesting writing.
Spellings: Spellings are taught according to the rules and words contained in Appendix 1 of the English National Curriculum. Teachers use the Pathways to Spell to support their teaching by using a review, explain and practise, apply and reflect model.
Grammar and Punctuation: Grammar and punctuation knowledge and skills are taught through English lessons as much as possible. Teachers plan to teach the required skills through the purpose of writing that they are teaching, linking it to the purpose of writing to make it more connected with the intended writing outcome. Teachers also focus on particular grammar and punctuation skills as stand-alone lessons.
Handwriting: We use the Letter Join handwriting scheme. Handwriting is taught explicitly in lessons and in context when the teacher models correct letter formation. In EYFS and Year 1, children are taught printed letter formation which is a wonderful starting point for them as they move to a cursive style in Year 2.
Assessment: Teachers use their teacher assessment to determine whether a child is working within age-related expectations, above or below. They will base their judgements on the quality of the independent write that pupils produce at the end of each unit. Assessments are moderated internally as well as with our cluster schools externally.
Pupils will make good progress from their own personal starting points. By the end of Year Six they will be able to write clearly and accurately and adapt their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences. Our pupils will acquire a wide vocabulary and have a strong command of the written word. Most importantly, they will develop a love of writing and be well equipped for the rest of their education.