Our approach to literacy:
At Cedars Manor the teaching of literacy across the whole curriculum is essential for promoting shared and cohesive values throughout the whole school.
We recognise that all children have a wide variety of experiences and capabilities and feel very strongly that each child is an individual, entitled to the best possible education tailored to their needs.
Writing across the whole curriculum:
We have a strong emphasis on actively exploring language and talk for writing, helping students with their understanding, vocabulary and writing in all subjects.
We actively expect and encourage the same standard of writing in all curriculum subjects to match those levels achieved in English.
At Cedars Manor children are taught to use a cursive handwriting script from Foundation stage on. All pupils are taught to develop control and fluency in writing and this is taught across all subjects. Using a cursive handwriting style also aids in the correct spelling of words.
At Cedars Manor pupils work towards completing a piece of unsupported writing every other week. This is then marked and levelled by the teacher and redrafted the follow week by the pupil. This is beneficial in many ways as it means work is constantly being assessed and pupils develop a greater understanding of how to move forward in their learning.
Spelling, punctuation and grammar:
The teaching of spelling, punctuation and grammar is very important at Cedars Manor. Teachers identify learners’ different starting points and needs accurately and adapt their curriculum, including any intervention programs, to meet changing needs. Spellings are sent home on a weekly basis but key topic words and important vocabulary are taught throughout lessons and displayed within the classrooms. We also use a wide variety of approaches to the teaching and learning of spelling, punctuation and grammar that builds upon the consistent use of phonics.
Reading at Cedars Manor:
Reading is taught in Foundation stage through the use of phonic based reading books. As children progress into Key stage 1, they continue to read a range of phonic based books focusing on blending and segmenting, interspersed with stimulating books from our reading schemes.
Further up the school at key stage 2, children are able to choose their own reading book from the reading scheme appropriate for their reading age.
As well as the extensive reading collections in both upper and lower school, we are fortunate to have a well-stocked library of both fiction and non-fiction reading books to support pupil’s independent reading skills.
We recognise the benefits of children immersing themselves in the written word, so encourage our pupils to read to an adult each evening. We also think it’s great when adults read to children!
We aim for all pupils read a minimum of 3 times a week in school. We use the following reading schemes in school:
Collins Big Cat
Oxford Reading Tree
Those pupils who need additional support are also able to access a variety of reading programmes such as:
Catch-up Reading: A structured one to one intervention programme for pupils struggling with reading.
Catch-up Reading is also available on line as an interactive reading resource.
Rapid Reading: A structured reading program to support children who are struggling or children who have English as a second language. Children work one to one with an adult but can also access e-books on line at school or in their own homes.
Phonics at Cedars Manor:
At Cedars Manor we view the development of phonics as essential.
We practise Synthetic phonics which starts children off on words containing only the simplest letter-sound correspondences and teaches the children to read at every point by translating letters into sounds and blending the sounds all-through-the-word. We use the Letters and Sounds Phonics Scheme which is supplemented by the actions from Jolly Phonics.
Phonics is taught as part of the literacy lesson but we also promote its use throughout all aspects of reading and writing across the wider curriculum. We use Collins Big Cat phonic reading books and Pearson Phonics Bug Club reading books.
At the end of Year 1 all children complete a phonics assessment which is a way for teachers to ensure that children are making sufficient progress in the phonics skills to read words and are on track to become fluent readers who can enjoy reading for pleasure and for learning. Teaching and support in phonics will continue throughout the rest of KS1 and into KS2 as necessary.
We encourage parents to support their child’s learning in this area and offer regular support, especially in the early years.