Writing at Highfield J&I School
At Highfield School, our intention is for our writing curriculum to be representative and raise achievement and aspirations for all pupil groups. An effective writing curriculum will enable our children to be fluent and successful when speaking and writing. Being able to speak and write fluently are necessary for our children to thrive in society. Our children need to be confident and competent speakers and writers by the time they finish at Highfield. We want for our children to enjoy writing and understand the importance of this area of learning.
In line with the national curriculum, out curriculum allows our children to develop the knowledge and skills that enable them to be successful. The curriculum is mapped out progressively within and across year groups and ensures that the key skills and knowledge that children encounter is built upon year on year. Our curriculum develops the language and written skills that our pupils need to master throughout their time at primary school.
At Highfield, our children are fully engaged in the writing process, giving them opportunities to write for a range of purposes. Our curriculum ensures that our children are clear on the purpose and audience: they understand what they are writing and who it is for through being taught how to write for the main purposes.
In order to do this, children are immersed in high-quality texts that they examine and extract ideas from. Our children are taught the importance of language choices and how they impact upon the overall quality of their written piece. Oral rehearsal is utilised to support our children with this. Our units of work all incorporate audience and purpose, composition and effect and grammar, punctuation and spelling.
Our children are provided with a clear context for writing – linked to our non-core curriculum where possible – and always based around a quality class text.
Our writing curriculum is planned to ensure writing opportunities are sourced carefully and developed based on the needs of each individual pupil. The end outcome is shared from the beginning so that children are clear on expectations for their written work. Teacher modelling is utilised to support children in achieving this. A range of writing stimuli are used to develop children’s written work and to enhance and enrich the writing process as a whole.
Each unit of writing lasts between 2 to 4 weeks. Skills are developed and embedded in a clear, progressive, sequence of learning across each writing unit. In KS1 and KS2, pupils complete the full writing process in each writing unit and they are given opportunities to write at length in extended, independent writing sessions at the end of the unit. This may be in a different context or linked to a different curriculum area as it demonstrates the understanding command and use of language, composition and skills through independent application. Handwriting is also taught across school beginning with individual letter formation through to joining and developing fluency and style.
In the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS), pupils are provided with opportunities to explore, learn and use words and text in a broad range of contexts, including through stories, role play and drama. We create a language rich environment so that children are given every opportunity to build their language repertoire.
Our writing curriculum ensures that children can produce high quality texts in a range of contexts, curriculum areas and for differing audience and purposes.
The impact of the curriculum is measured through:
- Ongoing assessment of children’s written work
- Termly assessments of the children’s portfolio of writing
- Monitoring (progress and achievement) by senior leaders through regular book scrutiny, learning walks, pupil data and pupil conferencing
- Achievement in line with age-related expectations
- Moderation across the Trust/against standardised materials where available
This informs next steps for the implementation of writing, for individual pupils and for the development of staff within school