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The English curriculum is not only the foundation of education but also of society. At Cupernham Junior School we are proud of our English curriculum, which promotes high standards of language and literacy. We enable children to become well-rounded readers and writers across the whole curriculum. Through building on the skills and knowledge they have developed in the Key Stage 1 curriculum, we provide rich and varied learning opportunities that foster the skills they will need to become lifelong readers and writers. The skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing enable children to succeed across the whole curriculum, at home and in the wider world. This in turn leads to improved life opportunities.


At Cupernham Junior School we believe that by the time the children leave us, children should be confident, articulate and expressive individuals who will engage in the lifelong skills of communication. We will provide an ambitious, holistic curriculum, which will inspire and motivate children to engage in high quality learning in reading, becoming effective listeners, speakers, readers and writers.


This will be facilitated through a nurturing, cultural, focused environment, which will be rich with memorable experiences and transferrable skills.  We will ensure all children are challenged, respecting their individual starting points, focusing on growth, progression and resilience. We will make the learning of reading fun, interesting and memorable.


We strive to develop a culture that instils a passion for reading in all children, helping them to develop the life skill of reading habits, both for information and pleasure. Children are enabled to become enthusiastic and critical readers through their independent reading, as well as in engaging and challenging reading lessons, driven by high quality texts. All children are supported in becoming fluent readers and our extensive Library is at the heart of our school. 


How do we teach reading at Cupernham Junior School? 


Phonics and phonological awareness:

Early reading is taught through the systematic teaching of phonics. Using the approved Letters and Sounds programme, children will apply their growing phonics knowledge and skills as their default route to decoding unknown words. Children will learn to respond speedily, applying knowledge and reading by blending sounds in unfamiliar words. Sight words are taught through reading common exception words, noting unusual correspondences between spelling and sound and where these occur in words. Children read books aloud, building fluency and confidence, in small groups, through 1:1 intervention, accurately, building their fluency and confidence. Children engage with bespoke resources and are taught by experts in each cohort. Through regular assessment, progress is observed and gaps filled. The teaching of phonics is fast paced and active and is delivered through high quality teaching.

Each child who requires phonics takes home a phonics book matching their growing knowledge, which they can read at home with an adult.


Whole Class Reading Lessons

At Cupernham Junior School we aim to raise standards in reading by teaching whole class reading, which is supported by a variety of rich texts, both fiction and non-fiction. This allows all pupils to read with the teacher more regularly, moving faster through more or longer high quality texts and benefiting from the teacher’s expert explanations, modelling, questioning and feedback. This promotes rich discussion, collaborative learning, allowing for continual assessment.


Building vocabulary and knowledge

Vocabulary, the knowledge or words and word meaning, is one of the key building blocks to developing language and fluency. Through the use of challenging, engaging texts, children will explore new language, build specific vocabulary through each text progressively across the school, through most subjects taught. Children will use dictionaries regularly to explore new language, allowing them to become familiar with their use, which will also assist with their spelling accuracy.

Once per half term, children will study a non-fiction text which will support their lead foundation subject for that half term. This will expose them to specific and technical vocabulary required to support their foundation subjects, whilst building their knowledge of the subject being taught.