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Literacy

Our Literacy Policy underpins our curriculum delivery through a relentless focus on: reading to improve vocabulary and knowledge of the wider world, written accuracy and developing strong oracy skills to give our students the confidence to strive to be the very best they can be.

It is estimated that nine million adults in the UK are functionally illiterate, and one in four British five-year-olds struggle with basic vocabulary; therefore, a relentless focus on literacy is vital to ensure that our students leave our academy with the fundamental literacy skills they need to be confident and successful in the next stage of their lives.

Literacy is the golden thread which runs through all areas of our curriculum to develop all aspects of students’ written and spoken communication.

Reading

Aim

Provide a range of opportunities for students to become confident and competent readers, as well as promoting an ethos of reading for pleasure.

What will this look like?

Students will carry a book in his or her bag as part of their academy equipment.

For KS3, this will include a range of fiction from our well- resourced school and local libraries; at KS4, reading will focus on academic study and critical research to compliment the GCSE curriculum.

Opportunities to develop reading will be embedded into a rolling DEAR (Drop Everything and Read) session, form time reading, E1E (Everyone Exceptional) and in curriculum areas to enrich our students with powerful knowledge.

A unified approach to teaching reading has been adopted across all subject areas to allow students to confidently: predict, read and summarise a range of texts.

All students will take part in a termly reading test, giving staff detailed knowledge of their students’ reading ability; a unified approach for all reading abilities has been adopted to close any reading age gap.

Writing

Aim

Provide a range of opportunities for students to practise and develop extended writing skills.

Develop the technical accuracy of students’ written communication.

What will this look like?

All teachers will mark for specific literacy errors, promoting written accuracy and proof reading (capital letters/full stops, commas, apostrophes, homophones, tenses and paragraphs). Any potential errors will be highlighted in green

and students will correct in green.

Staff will address common literacy misconceptions through teaching during whole class feedback sessions.

A unified approach has been implemented to support students in writing for different purposes and audiences; teachers should allow for planning time and model PAF (purpose, audience and format) before approaching an extended writing task.

Oracy

Aim

Ensure all stakeholders promote effective and competent spoken communication.

What will this look like?

SHAPE will be used to give high quality feedback in relation to students’ verbal responses:

S - Sentence, H – Hands up, A – Articulate, P – Project,

E – Eye contact.

Informal language will be challenged by staff, to encourage students to consider their audience when speaking.

Vocabulary

Aim

Ensure students are regularly exposed to the explicit teaching of new

and challenging vocabulary in all curriculum areas; this will be utilised through the Frayer Model.

What will this look like?

Some students will require additional support to develop competent literacy skills and remove barriers to their progress.

  • A unified approach will be adopted

to teaching and introducing new vocabulary using root words and etymology strategies, which stems from the Frayer model.

  • A unified approach has been implemented to ensure that students are exposed to a range of vocabulary during English literacy/library sessions.
  • When questioning or through classroom debate and discussion, students will be encouraged  to use appropriate subject specific vocabulary.

The Reading Element in the Classroom

The Writing Element in the Classroom

We feel it is important that our students leave LEA with the fundamental basics in literacy and written accuracy. Therefore, we have narrowed our focus in literacy marking to include the following:

  • Full stops/capital letters
  • Apostrophes
  • Tenses
  • Homophones
  • Commas
  • Paragraphs

These are the fundamental basics of literacy to ensure that our students become accurate, competent and confident writers. It is the expectation that teachers should ensure the marking of literacy happens alongside general book marking. Teachers simply highlight the error using a green highlighter pen. Students then use their green pens to correct the mistake.

Introduce a SPaG learning opportunity.

Spelling

Focus on a homophone mix that crops up regularly.

For example in PE:

We will practise backhand return in tennis. (ise for the verb)

In tennis practice, we will all participate. (ice ending for the noun)

Punctuation

Focus on a piece of punctuation during each Red Zone task and include it in the task criteria.

For example;

Punctuate all proper nouns with a capital letter.

The Oracy Element in the Classroom

This should be the golden literacy thread in every lesson and in every classroom; we need to ensure that we are challenging students to develop their oracy skills. Some useful phrases to support the development of oracy:

  • Can you re-SHAPE your answer and put it into a sentence? Can you formalise your answer?
  • You need to project your voice a little more.
  • Can you repeat your answer so that the rest of the class can hear?

 

The Vocabulary Element in the Classroom

The Frayer Model: Introduce the new word and explore the meaning and roots of the word.

Vocabulary & SPaG

We explicitly teach ambitious vocabulary within our lessons. We have a unified approach to teaching vocabulary underpinned through the use of root words and chunking. This should be subject specific or based on exam command words. Integral Reading sessions and the E1E Literacy strand at KS3 provide further opportunity for the development of ambitious vocabulary.