In all year groups, the implementation of writing curriculum is through high-quality texts – ranging from picture books to Shakespeare, immersive real-life experiences, such as school trips, or a combination of both.
Over their time at school, children will write a variety of fiction and non-fiction texts, including recounts, news reports, explanation texts, poems, plays and stories of all kinds. We use drama, role-play, storytelling and discussion to engage the imagination, before moving on to vocabulary exploration, sentence craft and creative writing.
Throughout the Early Years and Key Stage 1, children are taught the key principles of writing in order to lay a strong foundation for developing their skills later on. An emphasis is placed on developing well-formed, fluid cursive handwriting. Children are taught to apply their knowledge of phonics to help them spell accurately, and to structure their work, whether it be fiction writing or a set of instructions. Our curriculum teaches the children to add variation and description to their work by developing their vocabulary, including the use of purposeful adjectives and adverbs and developing sentence structure using conjunctions and sentence openers. By the end of Key Stage 1, children have been taught the fundamentals of punctuation and grammar. This structural and technical knowledge is fostered alongside developing a love for writing as a lifelong means for communication and expressing oneself.
Handwriting, Spelling and Grammar
At Cutnall Green C of E Primary school, the programme Letter Join is used to support the teaching of cursive handwriting. Handwriting is taught discreetly as well as being woven into our curriculum from Reception to Year 6, beginning with mark making and patterns in Early Years to well-formed, fluid, joined handwriting in KS2. When a child is assessed and can form and join all letters accurately, they are awarded a pen licence.
Spelling is taught from Reception-Year 6 every week. Children follow a progressive programme and are introduced to a new rule each week as well as two new words from the National Curriculum's commonly misspelled words list. Spellings are sent home on Seesaw as part of homework and children are tested each week.
Grammar is interwoven in English lessons as well as having a dedicated lesson in each learning journey. As children progress towards Year 6, they are taught to write for a range of purposes – to entertain, inform, explain, persuade and discuss – using explicit sentence models and ambitious vocabulary. They then learn to shape these sentences into coherent paragraphs before planning and creating their own original works of fiction and non-fiction. Children also apply their writing skills across the curriculum: writing up experiments in Science, recounting events in History and describing processes in Geography, for example.
When children leave Cutnall Green C of E Primary School, they consider themselves to be skilled writers, confident in their ability to express themselves through language and this has a direct impact on preparing them not only for the next stage of their education, but also their future life opportunities.