Reading and Phonics
At St John’s we use the ‘Oxford Reading Tree’, reading scheme to support teaching reading. Reading is taught in all of our classes form the very beginning of learning how to read, to the higher level skills of inference and deduction. We supplement our reading with a whole variety of books, some chosen by the teacher to support a child, and some as a free choice for children.
Each class room has its own book corner with a variety of fiction and non-fiction books for children to choose to read.
In addition we have two libraries situated around the stair well.
We have a structured approach to teach children how to use phonic sounds in their reading and writing. This is introduced in nursery and then taught in ability groups in reception and year 1. We use ‘Read, write, inc’ (a phonics scheme) to support our phonics teaching.
Children are tested at the end of year 1 to see how they have mastered the skill of using phonics, according to the national testing agenda.
The Early Years foundation Stage
The Early Years Foundation Stage begins when children reach the age of 3. In our school the Foundation Stage begins when children start our Nursery and finishes when they leave Reception to move into Year 1. The children follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. The teacher plans opportunities for a combination of child initiated activities and adult lead focus activities, both inside and outside.
As you know, our curriculum has changed in line with government expectations and we want to keep you up to date with what your children are learning and how you can support them.
Each unit is a different length (usually between 4 and 6 weeks) and there are also special intensive weeks such as Design and Technology, Art, Language or Music week. When your child’s class begins a new unit we will send you a letter telling you what it is all about. Different year groups will start units at different times, depending on what they are learning.
Our curriculum is:
- practical and interactive
- relevant to the “real world”. (Children learn to think like professionals e.g. scientists, engineers or archaeologists.)
- inspiring (Visits and visitors can teach children more in a day than a week of learning in the classroom.)
- rooted in our local area whilst widening our horizons.
- tough enough to give our children the skills they need when they move on to secondary school.