Writing at Harpur Hill Primary School and Nursery
Writing has an important place in education and in society. It is an essential skill and the ability to write with confidence and accuracy is a tool which will support a child through life. It is our intent that our children understand the social functions of writing in order to use different genres of writing appropriately by considering its purpose and matching it to its audience. Furthermore, it is our intent that every child develops a progressive understanding of grammatical conventions, the way in which punctuation aids understanding and how to apply spelling rules. It is also our intent that all children have a joined, legible and increasingly efficient handwriting style. Through our teaching of writing, we intend to impart pupils with the knowledge, understanding and skills they need in order to reach their potential as individuals
At Harpur Hill Primary School and Nursery, the teaching of writing within the English curriculum has been carefully considered to enable our pupils to become confident and creative writers.
Our aim is to provide inclusive and aspirational environments and learning experiences where pupils thrive and build the cultural capital they need to make aspirational choices about their own futures, overcoming any barriers.
These are explored through different text types appropriate to the age and ability of the child.
Composition – Children are taught the structure of different types of text.
Transcription – Children are taught to write legibly and with increasingly accurate spelling.
Within writing sessions, children are taught a range of skills in order for them to develop as confident writers.
Planning – Looking at real texts, children are taught different features of types of text and how to plan both orally and written.
Structure – Children are taught to write cohesively within a range of texts.
Vocabulary – Using awareness of the reader, children are taught to use a range of adventurous language.
Grammar – Children are taught to construct sentences which are grammatically correct.
Punctuation – Children are taught to use accurate and increasingly higher level punctuation including punctuation to create specific effect.
Spelling – In accordance with their age and ability, children are taught different spelling strategies to improve their writing.
Handwriting – Children are taught to form letters correctly according to the school handwriting policy.
Writing is taught on a daily basis through a structured writing sequence. In daily writing sessions, children are taught different skills with an aim to develop a child who writes with accuracy, confidence and increasing creativity.
In Writing, by the end of EYFS children will:
Be able to write recognisable letters, most of which are correctly formed. They will be able to spell words by identifying sounds in them and representing the sounds with a letter or letters. It is expected that they will also write simple phrases and sentences that can be read by others. Children will show good control and co-ordination in their small movements. They will handle equipment and tools effectively, including pencils for writing.
By the end of Key Stage 1 children will:
Be able to write narratives, both real and fictional. Children will write using past and present tense mostly correctly and consistently. Children will demarcate sentences using capital letters, full stops and question marks most accurately. Children will spell most common exception words correctly. Handwriting will show consistency in letter sizing.
By the end of Key Stage 2 children will:
Be able to write for a range of purposes and audiences showing increasing manipulation of sentence structures. Children will be able to use a range of devices to build cohesion within and across paragraphs. They will select and use grammatical structures that reflect what the writing requires. They will use a range of punctuation and maintain tense throughout a piece of writing. Children will spell most words correctly or will be able to use resources quickly and efficiently in order to support spelling. Handwriting will be consistently joined in line with the school policy.
Any child working below their age-related expectation will receive a tailored curriculum with personalised objectives. This will enable all children to build the skills and knowledge needed to bridge the gap between themselves and their peers enabling them to reach their full potential.
At Harpur Hill Primary School and Nursery, our curriculum is carefully mapped out into a long-term plan. This enables links between subjects to be identified and carefully planned for to support pupil’s retention of knowledge and skills. See Appendix below.
Early writing and phonics are taught following the Little Wandle phonics programme.
Following Early Years, units of writing are carefully planned and taught using a structured writing sequence which contains key elements of grammar, punctuation and spelling appropriate to the year group. These units are usually based on the book that the children are studying.
Throughout the teaching sequence, the children are given the opportunity to analyse high quality writing examples of a particular text type, practise different writing skills and they complete the unit with an independent piece of writing specific to a text type.
Throughout the unit, teachers and support staff also look where children need extra assistance and offer swift intervention sessions to provide the children with the skills to produce high quality writing.
Children who are taught following the writing sequence will follow the teaching sequence outlined in the appendix below.
A wide range of strategies are used to measure the impact of our Writing curriculum. The impact of learning is measured through formative and summative assessment. Children are assessed against the writing objectives at the end of each term. These are kept in the front of each child’s English book and easily visible to both children and teachers.
English books are scrutinised by the English Leader on a termly basis in order to assess strengths and weaknesses in specific teaching sequences.
Teacher assessments in writing are submitted on a termly basis and children who are not achieving in line with expectations are given further intervention sessions in order to address any misconceptions and to allow children to progress with their learning.
Teachers moderate writing in school every term and in the cluster meet on a yearly basis in order to moderate writing and to ensure that judgements are accurate and fair.
English Long Term Plan
Kindly click on the following links for further information
Please see the leaflets attached below for how to support your child with writing at each stage of their early development.
'Write with me' tips for Parents
Writing in Reception and Year One
To ensure that children are getting the most from their writing tasks at home we would like to share a few tips about early writing with you:
- Always ensure your child has their phonics grid when completing writing tasks.
- Don’t worry about spelling mistakes – at this age we expect children to spell phonetically. So, let your child sound out the word and write it independently. (You could write the correct spelling above the word if you wanted to, after they have finished and only if they ask for help as we don’t want them to feel their writing isn’t good enough).
For example, if your child wanted to write 'The giant is wearing a hat to keep his head warm' and wrote it like this 'The jighant is wairing a hat to keep his hed worm' - this would be fine (even though some words are spelt incorrectly they are phonetically plausible and exactly what we expect at this stage).
- When writing a word, encourage your child to listen to the sounds in the word- use your Fred Fingers to count the sounds.
- If your child is unsure of how to write a sound, encourage them to have a look at their phonics grid to help them.
- In Reception, some children will be able to write a simple sentence whilst some children will be at the stage of writing words and labels. This is ‘typical and usual’ development.
When your child is writing a word, encourage them to follow these steps;
- Say the word out loud 3 times.
- Count how many sounds are in your word using your Fred Fingers.
- Write your word, sounding out each word, using your Fred Fingers and phonics grid to help.
When your child is writing a sentence encourage them to follow these steps;
- Say the sentence out loud 3 times.
- Count how many words are in your sentence.
- Write your sentence, sounding out each word, using your phonics grid to help.
- Read your sentence to check it makes sense.
- Check you have the perfect sentence. Do you have a capital letter to start? Finger spaces in between words? A full stop at the end of your sentence?