Curriculum Intent (Vision)
At Manor Field Junior School, we believe that our children learn best when English is taught through an integrated, cross-curricular approach, where learning opportunities are carefully planned to meet the needs of all of our pupils, so that they are motivated by – and engaged in – their English journey. Lessons are well-structured and adapted to meet the needs of individual pupils: we believe that all children at Manor Field should be able to read, speak and write fluently, and our aim is that they feel empowered to make choices and to interpret the world around them.
Our aim is for children at Manor Field to:
Implementation of the curriculum
Our contextualised curriculum provides the children with a range of opportunities to communicate their ideas in a variety of ways, and with different intentions. Our English lessons are based on a series of engaging and motivating stimuli: these enable the children to form and develop their own views and opinions, which they can convey effectively through their writing, as well as through Speaking and Listening. All units are planned to meet the children’s learning needs and interests, and are adapted to suit each and every child.
Throughout their learning, children are provided with numerous opportunities to apply their reading skills and to develop as ‘readers’. We believe that children should develop a love of, and enjoyment for, reading for pleasure, as well as learning the skills needed to be fluent and competent by the end of Key Stage 2. Through assemblies, children’s knowledge of different authors and genres is developed so that they can expand their personal reading repertoire. In whole-class and guided reading sessions, quality texts are used to challenge and inspire all children through discussion, drama, images and discussions around vocabulary and quality, engaging class readers are read daily with the children, in order to spark and ignite their curiosity and motivation. Through the use of Essential Letters and Sounds (a synthetic, systematic phonics programme), we regularly assess gaps in children’s decoding, blending and comprehension so that appropriate interventions can be used to enable children to catch up and to make more rapid progress.
Our cross-curricular approach to learning enables children to practise their key reading skills in all subjects, as well as just through English and ‘reading’ lessons alone. Throughout all projects, and through our regular, high-quality ‘Book Studies’, which are underpinned by the UNCRC, there are opportunities for children to be engaged as ‘readers’ in different contexts. Texts develop the children’s inference and deduction skills, enabling them to understand and engage with what they have read and make links. At the same time, they are encouraged to reflect on, and evaluate, key themes in order to become successful global citizens.
Drama, book studies and visitors are used to enhance the children’s writing, through providing them with opportunities to explore emotions and motives of characters – either from fiction texts or linked to the project. The essential skills of grammar and spelling are taught in an engaging and contextual way, alongside discrete ‘block grammar’ sessions, so that children become confident to use and apply them in their written work. The children are taught the skills of editing and improving, with regards to both secretarial features, and whether their writing meets the intentions.
Positive, regular feedback is given to children: all children take an active role in evaluating, assessing and improving their own work, as well as that of their peers, showing an awareness of the audience, purpose and form.
Impact of our curriculum
Supported by our broad and balanced curriculum, Manor Field children view themselves as readers and writers, who are proud to showcase what they have achieved. Children are confident to take risks in their reading and writing and enjoy discussing and sharing their ideas; this is particularly due to the Rights Respecting Ethos that is integral to our Manor Field curriculum. Due to our integrated curriculum, skills taught in English lessons are able to be applied into other subjects; children apply their use of grammar, punctuation and vocabulary to a range of different text types - for example, when producing ‘Island Law’ posters for the residents of ‘The Island’, producing film critique boards, writing narratives with flashback elements and presenting their understanding of a Greek god through a ‘Top Trumps’ style. We encourage children’s deeper understanding of how and when to use specific vocabulary, grammar and punctuation for impact and provides elements of appropriate choice and challenge for all pupils.
Through carefully-planned sequences of learning, children make good progress towards developing their vocabulary, spelling, grammar and punctuation skills. Children are enabled to write across a range of forms and adapt their writing successfully, considering the purpose and making choices linked to their intentions as writers. By the end of KS2, our children are able to write with greater precision and accuracy, whilst still maintaining quantity and quality. Alongside each learning journey, quality extracts are used, unpicked and evaluated as effective models to support children when writing in a particular style. Tier 2 and 3 vocabulary (as well as 'Word of the Week') is unpicked, taught and modelled explicitly and the children are keen to use this in their writing.
Children of all abilities achieve in all lessons. The most disadvantaged children and children with SEND are given the knowledge and cultural capital to broaden their horizons and become lifelong learners. More able children rise to the opportunity to be stretched and challenged through a range of strategies, including the evaluation of the impact of their writing and the writing of others.
Since September 2022, we have been using 'Essential Letters and Sounds' as our phonics scheme across the school. Reading is a fundamental skill and the programme is tailored to meet the needs of all children, in order for them to learn to read quickly, and to close any gaps that they may have.
Further information and guidance will be available in the next few weeks.