The Purpose & Aims of English
English has a pre-eminent place in education and in society. A high-quality education in English will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. Through reading in particular, pupils have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Literature, especially, plays a key role in such development. Reading also enables pupils both to acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know. At Holy Trinity, all pupils are encouraged to read widely in order to widen their vocabulary and broaden their experiences, introducing them to the best that has been thought and said so that they appreciate human creativity and achievement. All the skills of language are essential to participating fully as a member of society; pupils, therefore, who do not learn to speak, read and write fluently and confidently are effectively disenfranchised.
The overarching aim for English in the national curriculum is to promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment. The national curriculum for English aims to ensure that all pupils:
- read easily, fluently and with good understanding
- develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information
- acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language
- implement targeted interventions to ensure that pupils who are not fluent readers and communicators by the end of Key Stage One are fully prepared to access reading opportunities across the balanced curriculum in Key Stage Two.
- appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
- write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences
- use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas
- are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.
Organisation of Teaching
English is a fundamental part of our curriculum at Holy Trinity. A significant part of each school day is dedicated to the teaching of English. Overall, this amounts to the following time in each key stage:
Early Years: one hour and fifty minutes - two hours daily
Key Stage 1: between one hour and forty minutes - one hour and fifty minutes a day
Key Stage 2: one hour and 30 minutes daily
The English curriculum comprises of the following subjects:
- Spoken English, including the development of vocabulary
- Reading, including phonics
- English grammar, punctuation and spelling
As well as dedicated English lessons covering the above aspects, English is also taught within other subjects across the curriculum. This enables pupils to apply skills and knowledge within different contexts.
Although all aspects of English are interwoven and mutually dependent, for clarity, we have split the teaching of English into the following suite of policies:
- English Policy A: Spoken English, including the development of vocabulary
- English Policy B: Reading, including phonics
- English Policy C: Writing
- English Policy D: English Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling