The English Curriculum at St Thomas'
Knowledge Rich and Academic
Our progressive curriculum builds upon prior knowledge and skills taught throughout the year groups. Our rigorous and well-sequenced English curriculum provides many purposeful opportunities for speaking, reading and writing, and ensures that all children can enjoy and access the learning, while also seeking to challenge children to achieve their full potential. Knowledge about the wider world is learned within the context of challenging texts. We also expect pupils to develop a good knowledge of key authors and poets, texts and our literary heritage.
Reading and Vocabulary
Our aim is for children to form excellent habits of reading widely, both for pleasure and information, and have reading securely at the heart of our curriculum. As well as in English lessons, children will explore books during whole class guided reading and reading spine time, allowing children to become captivated in a range of poetry and novels. We want our children to have a good understanding of our literary heritage and to be exposed to a wide range of authors and books, therefore texts have been carefully chosen to reflect this. Vocabulary is explored frequently within the context of different texts and is prominent within the classroom environment.
English facilitates developing our school’s Christian values such as compassion, friendship, peace and respect, through discussion around issues raised within class texts. This provides a valuable opportunity to explore and develop these values in relation to characters within the stories we read.
Within our English curriculum, texts are purposefully chosen in order to expose the children to a wide range of cultures and backgrounds through settings and characters. This allows children to develop an understanding and appreciation of people who are different to themselves and offers a platform for valuable discussion within lessons.
Experiences and Life Skills
Oracy skills are seen as vital life skills that the children will develop while at St Thomas’, with the aim of supporting children to be able to communicate to an excellent standard, giving them secure foundations for the future.
Children will also take part in a range of trips and experiences to foster their love of English, such as watching Shakespeare plays and going to the theatre.
At St Thomas’ CE Primary School our aim is for our English curriculum to inspire, engage and motivate children to enjoy reading and writing. By the time children leave St Thomas’, our pupils will acquire a wide vocabulary and an understanding of grammar in order for them to have the literacy skills and tools needed in order to communicate to an excellent standard, through spoken and written English, and to be prepared for the next steps in their education and life beyond primary school. Our children are able to write clearly, accurately and coherently, and are able to adapt their language and style for a range of purposes and audiences. They are skilled in using discussion to explore ideas and can explain their understanding clearly, as well as participate in debate and make formal presentations.