Lead teacher - Miss Kaplan

English is used across the whole curriculum, so learning is not restricted to the daily English lesson. All lessons contain opportunities for developing speaking, listening, reading and writing skills.

In English, we follow the programme of study for the National Curriculum. In KS 1 spelling and handwriting is linked to the taught phases of phonics. The Phonics scheme we follow in KS 1 is Little Wandle. Children have daily phonics teaching for oral blending & segmenting, and also Grapho-phonemic skills. Please click on this link to see the parents page on the Little Wandle site. 

1. Speaking and Listening 

It is essential that children are good communicators and are taught to listen to their peers and adults. Pupils are given a variety of experiences and activities to develop their confidence and competence in speaking.

Listening skills are developed alongside speaking skills, enabling the children to comprehend, follow instructions, assimilate knowledge and listen for pleasure.

Pupils have the opportunity, throughout the school day, to work with Talking Partners and in small groups in order for ideas to be shared. We encourage pupils to:

  • Use Standard English
  • Speak clearly
  • To wait for their turn to contribute
  • Develop listening skills through oral comprehension
  • Pose relevant questions and respond to what they hear

Drama lessons also reinforce the development of pupils’ confidence in speaking clearly to an audience.

2. Reading

Reading skills are considered a priority, thus enabling pupils to read fluently and with understanding, to read for information and to use with confidence a wide range of printed material. We have a range of attractive books and a variety of reading scheme books ( which are all phonetically decodable in Reception and Year 1), which we add to and update regularly; the books are colour-coded into bands of similar difficulty. Reading is taught  in 1-1 and small group situations as well as in whole class set phonic lessons.  In Reception the focus is on building phonological skills and  learning sight vocabulary, while in Year 1 the children continue to 'grow the code' by learning alternative digraphs for sounds, but build on their prosody to support comprehension.

Children are encouraged to discuss, predict and reflect on what they have read. Children are expected to read daily and we ask parents to write comments in their child’s Reading Diary. The school library and class libraries have a large selection of both fiction and non-fiction books which the children may borrow on a regular basis.

At Sharnbrook Primary we use the Little Wandles scheme for teaching phonics.  We have a variety of reading scheme books that the children can assess to support them developing their reading skills. For example, we use Oxford Reading Tree, Dandelion, Big Cat, Ginn and Project X along with free choice when reading for pleasure. Throughout Reception and Year 1 the books chosen are phonetically decodable working along side the phonics scheme. In following the Little Wandle scheme the children only access books that contain words with digraphs that they have been taught so far.  This enables the children to practise using their decodable skills as well as building on their comprehension.

February Reading Challenge

 See our photos of the Reading challenge below:

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Virtual Author Visits

On Friday 5th February, Dan Worsley, children's author and performance storyteller, conducted a virtual author visit for our KS1 pupils via Zoom. He talked about his books and performed a story to help us celebrate National Storytelling Week. They found out about Eric Appleby, the heroic character in three of Dan's books. To finish the virtual session, Dan buttoned his storytelling waistcoat and performed one of the short stories from his Impossible Tales books. The children were magically transported onto a pirate galleon where they encountered a fearsome pirate, but thhey all made it home safe. A story-tastic afternoon!

In May, KS2 had a super virtual author visit with Tony Bradman.

Dan Worsley

200 Million Minutes

We were delighted to have participated in the worldwide challenge to read 200 Million Minutes. The challenge began on World Book Day (4th March) and ended on Children's Book Day (31st March).  The challenge wasn't just about winning great prizes but introducing children to the habit of reading in every day life, helping to improve their imagination and communication skills, and brighten their future prospects. Research shows that just ten minutes of reading a day makes a huge difference to a child's progress so imagine what 200 Million Minutes could achieve!



AfA 200mm Dark Logo LRG

World Book Day 2021

This year, World Book Day looked a little different but it did not stop us celebrating it! Various activities were undertaken both within school and for those learning at home which included a 'guess the Masked Reader' quiz which the children thoroughly enjoyed; making toilet roll book covers and characters; learning about DNA and solving crimes with author of the DNA Detectives (Dr Mandy Hartley); and our youngest pupils setting off on a Bear Hunt around the school grounds. All children should have now received their World Book Day token which they can use to exchange for one of this year's books up to the 31st March. Click here to find out about participating retailers.


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3. Writing

Our children are given many opportunities across the whole curriculum to write for different purposes. To support writing we teach children their letter sounds and blends following the “Letters and Sounds” approach that starts in Preschool and goes through to Year 2. 

Children are taught spellings through the use of letter clusters, using the LOOK, COVER, WRITE, CHECK, technique i.e. LOOK carefully at the word, COVER the word, WRITE the word down, CHECK to see if you were correct. Spellings are sent home to reinforce learning. This year we have also subscribed to Spelling Shed to provide additional practise using an online platform. We encourage pupils not only to learn spellings but extend their vocabulary through the use of a dictionary and thesaurus.

We have formal Handwriting lessons as this plays a key part in the presentation of work. It is hoped that most children will join their handwriting by the end of Year 2.

In the files below, you will find examples of children's work which shows you what writing should look like by the end of each Key Stage. There are examples for working towards the standard, working at the expected standard, and working at greater depth within the expected standard.

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English  English 1

English 1