Writing at Hazel Community Primary School.
At Hazel Community Primary, we deliver a book or novel led writing curriculum in our English lessons. Through this approach, children are able to experience a wide and exciting range of different stories and quality literature. This enables the children to develop their writing skills through scaffolding and demonstration of well-written genres and text.
Writing is at the core of the curriculum. Children need to write as a means of communication, as a way of clarifying their thoughts and as a method of recording their opinions and ideas. At Hazel, we provide the children with the skills to write for a range of different purposes and to use writing as a powerful and creative form of communication and self-expression. Writing forms a large part of various areas of the curriculum, therefore cross-curricular writing and writing in other subjects is of the upmost importance, as well as in English lessons. Through our exciting book- based curriculum we aim to ensure that all children reach their age expected level. Please see below for more guidance on the government’s expectations for writing across the primary age.
Writing in Reception
In Reception, children are encouraged to develop their gross and fine motor skills in order to be able to learn to write. All children experience writing in an early stage, such as making marks with paints, chalks, water and other mark-making materials before moving on to forming discretely taught letters during phonics and handwriting lessons. The children are taught to enjoy and be enthusiastic about writing through Shared and Guided writing lessons, in which children are taught the skills needed to write their own interesting, independent writing for various different genres and purposes. Our classrooms each have an area for independent writing and children are encouraged to use the variety of resources to explore and practise their skills.
Writing in Key Stage 1 and 2
Throughout Key Stage 1 and 2 different genres of writing are introduced to the children, enabling them to select the most appropriate for the purpose of their writing. They take part in a range of Drama activities and talk for writing, which helps to improve their writing skills. Shared and guided writing are again used to develop and define children’s writing and to ensure good quality writing is produced. They learn to plan, draft and produce a final piece for each unit of work that they study in English. They also write across a range of subjects. Children are encouraged to regularly edit and self-assess their work and peer-assess each other’s work.
Spelling, Grammar and Punctuation
In Key Stage 1 and 2 children are taught key punctuation, grammatical terminology and how to structure grammatically accurate sentences.
At Hazel Community Primary we stress the importance of good spelling, neat handwriting and quality presentation. From years 2 to 4, children receive at least three ten to fifteen-minute lessons each week based on ‘No Nonsense Spelling’. Children are taught how to build on their phonic knowledge from KS1 in order to become effective spellers.
Handwriting at Hazel
Here at Hazel Community Primary School we are very proud of our pupil’s handwriting and take particular care in our cursive handwriting style. We use a fantastic handwriting scheme called ‘Letter-join’. This scheme teaches children to learn cursive handwriting from Reception, thus meaning that children do not need to learn to print letters and then how to join them separately.
Handwriting is a basic skill that influences the quality of work throughout the curriculum. At the end of Key Stage 2 all pupils should have the ability to produce fluent, legible and, eventually, speedy joined-up handwriting, and to understand the different forms of handwriting used for different purposes.
We aim to make handwriting an automatic process that does not interfere with creative and mental thinking.
As a catalyst to speedy handwriting, we encourage parents and carers to use the Letter-join resources at home and can arrange for free access to the Home Edition of Letter-join. Just ask your class teacher for the login details if you have misplaced them.
Link to letter-join login: http://www.letterjoin.co.uk/