Reading and Phonics
At St Clement’s we use several reading schemes to support teaching reading, including Rigby Star and Bug Club phonics . Reading is taught in all of our classes from 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.
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 Letters & Sounds 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.
We also deliver guided reading daily, from Reception to Year 6, when the children get chance to have small group direct teaching and support, as well as work on independent follow on activities which deepen their knowledge and understanding of what they have read and how language works.
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 teachers plan opportunities for a combination of child initiated activities - ‘planning in the moment’ and some adult lead focus activities, both inside and outside. As the year progresses, there are more direct teaching sessions followed by independent follow up activities as well as structured phonics and snappy maths sessions.
Year 1 starts the academic year with a transition phase where children continue to learn in an early years style. As they become ready for more structure the teachers plan more formally structured teaching sessions until the whole class are working in line with the rest of the school. Over the past year or so the curriculum has changed in line with government expectations, as well as keeping an element of creativity and enrichment opportunities. We want to ensure that the children engage in a curriculum and that it is relevant to them, and the experiences they deserve.
The teachers plan in units, each unit is a different length (usually between 4 and 6 weeks) and there are also special intensive weeks such as Faith, creativity, book, cultural, science, health and maths week. Different year groups will start units at different times, depending on what they are learning and the literacy and numeracy will be linked to over arching topic.
All year groups have PE delivered or supported by a professional in house PE coach. Children from Year 2 to 6, have an opportunity for swimming sessions at a local swimming baths and PHSE is delivered by our pastoral team, including the use of Dot.Com programme.
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.