Emsworth Primary School

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 At Emsworth Primary School, we aim to promote high standards of 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.

 Through our carefully planned learning journeys, we draw together all aspects of the English curriculum so that children will:

  • read easily, fluently and with good understanding
  • develop the habit of reading widely and often for both pleasure and information
  • develop a rich and wide vocabulary
  • 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
  • be competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.

Speaking and Listening

We strongly believe spoken language underpins the development of reading and writing. Through stimulating language at the beginning of learning journeys, children are equipped with rich and varied language they can use in discussion. They are able to ask questions to peers, generate subject specific vocabulary and refine language choices before applying this in their writing. We are aware of the impact of the pandemic and multiple lockdowns on children's speaking and listening and strive to provide rich opportunities for talk in the classroom. 




Our Early Years teaching staff support children in letter formation from the start of their time at Emsworth Primary School. Before writing, children are exposed to a range of tasks to build fine motor control such as cutting skills and Funky Fingers before learning the stick and ball method of creating letter shapes. Throughout Year 1, children then practise pre-cursive writing before joining letters in Year 2 to meet national expectations of cursive handwriting. We believe that this gradual process enables children to write without the limitations of cursive writing in EYFS.

Similarly, we support a progressive approach to spelling whereby children in Early Years learn common exception words alongside their phonics teaching. With an emphasis on phonics application and common exception words in EYFS and Year 1, children then build upon their phonic knowledge and move onto learning specific spelling patterns in Year 2. We understand that some children still require consolidation of phonics as they continue into key stage 2 and ensure that this provision is continued for those that need it through specific tailored programmes of study. Throughout Year 2 and Key Stage 2, children are then set spellings weekly by their teacher and these spellings are then expected to be applied correctly in their writing. Spelling resources are readily available in each classroom and the children are encouraged to access these as independently as possible. In addition, posters, prompts and other resources on our Working Wall displays are added to and refreshed to reflect the needs of each cohort and are regularly used by the children to support their spelling.

At Emsworth Primary we want our children to enjoy writing and to experience meaningful opportunities to write for a wide range of purposes and audiences. Our learning journeys provide a process for all children to be able to secure steps to successful, well-structured writing. They begin each learning journey by 'stimulating and generating' vocabulary from high quality texts and other stimuli such as video clips, first-hand experiences or role-play. Time is spent using the new language through speaking and listening activities before children are invited to evaluate and improve their language choices.

They then move onto the next phase of the journey, 'capturing, sifting and sorting' expected sentence structures and other grammatical and structural features of carefully selected example texts. At this stage, they are given opportunities to hone new skills through directed tasks as well as through modelled and apprentice writes. Through explaining these core structures and grammatical features, modelling them and providing scaffolding as children practise them, we are able to ensure that the children are appropriately supported and challenged at this crucial stage in the process.

Finally, they move onto the 'creating and refining' stage of the learning journey, creating their own writing outcomes and presenting these in a range of ways - evaluating, editing and improving them before they do so.

As a product of these carefully planned learning journeys, children are able to select high-level language and learn grammatical elements of writing before integrating them in their apprentice and final writing outcomes. These outcomes are celebrated across the school and children feel proud to show their teachers and school leaders their learning. The children are always especially excited to be issued with a special Headteacher's sticker when they have visited to share their writing and photographs of these moments are often shared with parents via our Facebook page. 






We feel it is important to revisit and refresh our core texts regularly and are currently in the process of updating the whole school curriculum map for English. We will publish it on this page once it has been completed.

Follow the link below for access to the National Curriculum content for English: