The aims for English, as set out in the new National Curriculum, are 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 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
  • 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 presentation, demonstrating to others and participating in debates




At Christleton Primary School our aim is to develop pupils’ abilities within an integrated programme of Speaking and Listening, Reading and Writing, with a high focus on basic skills in spelling, punctuation and grammar. Pupils will be given opportunities to interrelate the requirements of English within a broad and balanced approach to the teaching of English across the curriculum, with opportunities to consolidate and reinforce taught literacy skills. English is split into three areas as defined by the National Curriculum - the spoken word, reading and writing.




At Christleton Primary School, teachers use a range of techniques to engage children in the literacy lesson. Visual literacy, enlarged texts, books or pictures are used at the start of a unit of work to stimulate and enable children to experience what they will be writing about. Drama and role play are also used to encourage interactive learning and promote the children’s imagination, as an aid to scaffolding their writing. At the start of the writing process children are exposed to many samples of the writing genre, this fundamental stage provides the opportunity to introduce children to a specific genre form, enabling them to capture ideas and secure understanding. As the writing process continues, the teacher models writing and undertakes shared writing, guided writing and talk for writing to develop the children’s knowledge and skills, in readiness for the independent writing they then undertake.

During the literacy lesson, the teacher will engage the whole class in shared reading or writing focusing on specific skills to be developed. The children then work in groups or individually, on independent activities differentiated by the teacher according to ability. In addition to the Literacy lessons, teachers plan for pupils to practise and apply the skills, knowledge and understanding acquired through literacy lessons to other areas of the curriculum.


At Christleton Primary School, early reading is taught using synthetic phonics as the main approach to reading. Pupils are systematically taught the phonemes (sounds), how to blend the sounds all through the word for reading, and how to segment the sounds in order to write words. They are taught to use their phonic skills and knowledge as their first approach to reading, but are also taught high frequency words that do not completely follow the phonic rules. We call these ‘tricky words’.

The school begins teaching phonics using the ‘Read Write Inc.’ programme. In reception, multi-sensory Jolly Phonics pictures, songs and actions support this. Phonics Play an online resource is also used.



In addition to phonics teaching, children from year 1 to year 6 use the Look, Cover, Say, Write, Check approach to learn spellings. From year 2 to year 6 the we follow the Read Write Inc spelling programme and utilise Spelling Shed to practise spellings online.

Reading Schemes

At Christleton Primary School, all our early reading books are colour banded. Your child will be given a colour band to choose their home reading book from which will help to ensure that the book they select is at the right reading level for them. Every colour band includes books from a range of reading schemes so that your child will experience a range of stories, text types and illustrations. The majority of books within the early book bands can be decoded using phonics skills and knowledge. A range of published schemes used including Rigby Star Phonics, Big Cat Phonics, Fun with Phonics, Floppy Phonics, Phonics Bug, Storyworlds, Oxford Reading Tree, Heinemann Sails, Project X, Rapid Reader and Songbirds are used.

Teachers plan guided reading sessions to teach individual children to become fluent in reading and comprehension skills of inference and deduction. Teachers group the children into small groups according to ability.

When a child has sufficiently developed their reading skills they will be moved from the book banded books onto ‘free reads’. Children at this stage are able to choose from a wide range of reading material in our school library.





Reading for Pleasure

At Christleton Primary School, we encourage pupils to develop a love of reading by having a well-stocked library and book selections available in each classroom.

We actively promote the local libraries summer reading scheme and organise events such as extreme reading competitions, World Book Day, and the ‘Ten Million Minute Reading challenge’.

Year 6 children take on the role of librarians and promote reading and the love of books through competitions and assemblies.

Within the classroom, high quality texts are used as the basis for planning English teaching and class reads are chosen to provide whole class engagement. Children also start to bring in books from home that link to their personal preferences. School also sends home suggested reading lists and links to useful reading information are posted regularly onto the school twitter feed.




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Christleton Primary School

Quarry Ln, Christleton, Chester CH3 7AY
Our school is a place of learning where everyone is valued and positively encouraged to achieve their full potential in a safe and caring environment.
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Telephone 01244 455288
Contact Lisa Bowes, Taryn Croft & Jacqui Gittins
Bursar and School Admin Assistants
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