The 2014 English National Curriculum is followed from Years 1-6 and the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum is followed in Nursery and Reception.
At Galton Valley we are passionate about empowering children to become lifelong readers and therefore, the learning and teaching of reading is embedded in every area of the curriculum. Our curriculum allows the children to have opportunities to apply and continue to develop English skills in a fun, engaging and meaningful manner. Reading skills, such as decoding, word recognition and phonological awareness, are explored explicitly during daily phonics lessons in Foundation Stage and Key Stage One, and continue to be built upon during Key Stage Two. We follow the synthetic phonics programme of ‘Letters and Sounds’. During weekly whole class Big Reading sessions, children are encouraged to practise a range of reading strategies to develop phonological awareness, vocabulary, fluency, comprehension, grammar, attitude and motivation. In small group guided reading sessions we focus upon explaining vocabulary, retrieving key information and interpreting the meaning of texts. Children explore a wide range of genres, both fiction and non-fiction, exposing them to a broad and balanced range of text. They are given opportunities to discuss the purpose of texts that they explore as well as consider both the texts’ themes and audience.
Our writing model is taught through a specific writing journey, beginning with sharing a high-quality text. We plan our English learning journey using the five R’s (Read it, Rip it, Rehearse it, Write it and Review it). First we look at what makes the text effective, identify key features, explore the language, and teach age-related grammatical features. This is then followed by giving the children short writing opportunities to rehearse and apply the features identified in the text. By the end of the teaching sequence, the children will have planned and written an independent piece of extended writing which shows evidence that they have applied all of their newly acquired skills. Editing and re-drafting time is given throughout the writing process so that their piece of writing is ready to be shared and reviewed.
We follow Kinetic Letters handwriting scheme, which incorporates exercises to strengthen muscles needed for writing. During the sessions, children are shown the correct pencil grip and spend time practising letter formation to develop flow and fluency in their writing.
We follow Headstart Spelling programme for Y1-6 and teach strategies from No-Nonsense Spelling programme to help children become independent spellers.