English

A great deal of emphasis is placed on English and Literacy within the classroom - and a large proportion of the school week is dedicated to it.

The reinforcement of spelling, punctuation and grammar rules is important, as is the development of reading and comprehension skills. Though there are discrete lessons covering these skills there are also ample opportunities to both practise and develop this skills during lessons which focus on other curriculum areas. [Though the mechanics of reading is usually mastered by year 6 the skills of inference, deduction and evaluation still need enhancement.]

Children are placed in reading ability groups within the class and will have several set texts throughout the course of the year as well as having the occasional 'whole class book'. 

The authors the children read during their time in Class 3 may include contemporary authors such as Anthony Horowitz and Michael Morpurgo, as well as the authors of classic tales such as Frances Hodgson Burnett, Charles Dickens, Jane Austen and Harper Lee.

 Each year the whole class studies a Shakespeare play. The Shakespeare plays usually covered during the four years children remain in Class 3 are Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet, A Midsummer Night's Dream and Hamlet.

We look at various text types during the year - including recounts and non-chronological reports, poetry and narrative.

Though there are some instances where the writing produced in class is created with various IT tools and software packages there is still the need to develop the speed, stamina and accuracy of the written word. Though it is expected that children will have a clear cursive script by the time they enter class 3, on occasion this still needs to be developed into a 'personal style'.

The English curriculum in Class 3 includes the study of several fiction and non-fiction genres each year. Throughout their time in class 3 (assuming they do not leave after Year 6) children will have studied:

  • Shakespeare: Romeo & Juliet; Hamlet; A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Macbeth
  • narrative: myths & legends; horror stories; traditional tales; whodunits; science-fiction and historical tales; stories from other cultures
  • plays
  • poetry: classic and modern; specific forms including narrative, haiku, cinquain, kenning; structure and language
  • research skills: skimming and scanning while reading; identifying salient facts; merging information from different sources; recognising validity and reliability of information sources; note taking and expanding notes to write reports
  • non-chronological and chronological reports
  • advertising and persuasive language
  • autobiography and biography
  • explanations
  • instructions
  • newspapers
  • formal and informal letter writing
  • debate and argument
  • as well as several texts by specific authors

Speaking and Listening

Speaking and listening is a fundamental skill which occurs in every lesson.

There are several organised opportunities for each child to present a talk each academic year. The children are asked questions at the end of their presentation by the rest of the class and are given feedback on how they could improve for next time.