Writing at Rivelin Primary
At Rivelin Primary, our writing, grammar, punctuation and spelling curriculum is based upon the National Curriculum programmes of study and Early Years Framework. The curriculum in place is ambitious for all pupil groups and is sequenced progressively to support pupils in readiness for the next stage of their education.
At Rivelin, teachers plan writing lessons following a book study or immersive experience approach using the writing, grammar and punctuation progression grid. This document is then used to derive long term plans in the subject, ensuring that careful consideration is given to the sequence of the curriculum through medium term planning. The writing, grammar, punctuation and spelling curriculum in place is planned to ensure pupils accumulate the necessary knowledge, skills and understanding that builds towards an independent piece of writing, showcasing pupils’ imagination, enjoyment and ability to write for varied audience and purpose.
Within our school, we use the ‘Little Wandle Phonics Scheme’ to teach our spellings and use resources from Spag.com to ensure we have a comprehensive coverage in grammar taught across school.
Class teachers use high quality texts as a stimulus for writing, ensuring that lessons are sequenced in small steps and pupils have a range of opportunities to read high quality written examples as a guide for their own practice. Core texts are chosen specifically based on the whole school curriculum map; careful consideration is paid to children’s prior knowledge, whereby children acquire knowledge across other curriculum subjects as a pre-requisite to the core text being read. This ensures children have sufficient prior knowledge to successfully interpret the text and understand the vocabulary.
- Flashcards and new vocabulary are introduced by teachers through a rehearsal and recital approach.
- A review takes place at the beginning of every lesson focused on grammatical concepts to reactivate prior learning.
- New learning is introduced in small steps, building on prior knowledge using the progression grids for writing, spelling, punctuation and grammar.
- Questioning is used to check for understanding. Talk opportunities are planned for to engage all pupils, for example, peer discussion, nominated feedback, think pair share.
- Scaffolding and adult led modelling build on small steps of knowledge and use thinking aloud strategies.
- Independent practice is completed by children across the sequence of lessons. Comprehension and grammar based tasks, identifying features of a text, planning, drafting and redrafting writing.
- Weekly review flashcards/slides to embed terminology and definitions, review of new knowledge to embed into long term memory through low stakes quizzes
Impact of the curriculum can also be seen through the Statutory Assessment Tests (SATs for Year 6 pupils) and through termly summative assessments across school which enables pupils’ progress and attainment in the subject matter to be evaluated.
To measure the impact of our curriculum, we regularly use pupils’ books to capture an insight into the effectiveness of our curriculum. Pupils’ work demonstrates the effectiveness of the curriculum where age-appropriate grammar knowledge and writing skills are developed over a sequence of lessons which lead towards pupils writing independent pieces.
In addition, we regularly collate pupil voice to ensure our curriculum meets the needs of the children at Rivelin Primary. As a result, children are exposed to a varied menu of genres and write for a range of audiences and purposes, with high quality models derived from a range of texts used to inspire their own writing. Through pupil interview, children can articulate the resources they have access to in order to improve and establish themselves as authors in their own right.
Pupils’ gain cultural capital through the carefully crafted choice of texts used as a basis for the curriculum – the exposure to a range of genres, authors and novels allows for pupils to read often and widely and provide a stimulus and high quality model to inspire pupils to have future aspirations as authors, journalists, editors and beyond. Through the work of the writing curriculum, pupils are keen to join in varied opportunities and competitions to share their own writing widely.
Examples of high quality work derived as a result of the writing, grammar, punctuation and spelling are used on our corridors as a learning showcase. This ensures pupils are proud of their work and strive to work towards achieving the same high standards.