Writing at Firfield
At Firfield Primary School, we aim to give our children a writing curriculum which enables them to become confident, creative and independent writers who are effectively able to articulate their own ideas. We support our children to develop transferable skills which they can use across the wider curriculum and throughout their lives. Our writing curriculum is built around high quality texts which are used as a vehicle to ensure children develop a strong understanding of the disciplinary knowledge and skills of a writer, and produce high quality learning outcomes. Firfield writers leave with a strong independent writer’s voice and the technical skills necessary to communicate clearly in the modern world.
Through using high-quality texts, immersing children in vocabulary rich learning environments and ensuring new curriculum expectations and the progression of skills are met, our children will be exposed to a language rich, creative and continuous English curriculum. This will not only enable them to become primary literate but will also develop a love of reading, creative writing and purposeful speaking and listening.
In Key Stages 1 and 2, children follow the national curriculum through a genre-mapped scheme devised by the school. The teaching sequence within writing, grammar and spelling lessons are built upon a book-led approach where pupils are exposed to a high-quality text, complete grammar work and lead towards unpicking a modelled text which leads to independent writing. Grammar is mapped by genre and year group, based on the new National Curriculum expectations. In order to ensure children develop a strong knowledge of different genres, we have created a progressive list of writing genres. The purpose of this is to ensure that children experience different types of writing in each year group but they do not need to experience every type of writing in every year group. Children revisit these genres across the year and their school-life in order to deepen their mastery. In Year 1, children focus on a narrower range of genres, learning 5 different genres in-depth, so that they can concentrate more fully on developing the craft of writing. As the children progress through school, more genres are introduced and previously taught genres are revisited to help support long-term memory; children broaden their experience of different genres and have the opportunity to develop their writing skills across a range of subjects. Therefore, by the time children reach upper KS2, they are able to write a range of different genres with confidence because they have a deep and rich understanding of each type of writing style.
Within each style of writing, children follow a similar path:
- Immerse – immersion in vehicle text. Determine purpose, audience and form. Sharing of example texts.
- Analyse – Familiarisation with text structures & language features. Build success criteria. Build substantive and disciplinary knowledge of the writer.
- Plan – Gather information and plan writing.
- Write – Modelled and guided writing
- Edit and proof-read– Improving work with support from their teacher and peers
- Reflecting on their feedback and redraft their work.
Teachers use the progression document and the National Curriculum to derive long term plans in the subject. Careful consideration is given to the sequence of the curriculum through medium term planning in order to ensure that lessons build towards a piece of writing, showcasing pupils’ acquired knowledge, skills and understanding.
At Firfield, we want all children to leave our school reading and writing with confidence, fluency and understanding, using a range of independent strategies. They will be able to take a responsibility for their learning including correcting their own errors, thereby, enabling them to become resilient learners and ambitious thinkers. Our aim throughout our English curriculum is for children to leave Firfield as thoughtful, reflective, articulate individuals who are able to communicate their opinions, their ideas and their emotions in a wide range of spoken and written ways.
To measure the impact of our curriculum, we regularly use pupils' books to capture an insight into the effectiveness of our curriculum. Pupils' work demonstrate the effectiveness of the curriculum where age-appropriate grammar knowledge and writing skills are developed over a sequence of lessons which lead towards pupils writing independent pieces. In addition, we regularly collate pupil voice to ensure our curriculum meets the needs of the children at Firfield Primary School. As a result, children are exposed to a varied menu of genres and write for a range of audiences and purposes, with high quality models derived from a range of texts used to inspire their own writing. Through pupil interview, children can articulate the resources they have access to in order to improve and establish themselves as authors in their own right. Pupils' gain cultural capital through the carefully crafted choice of texts used as a basis to the book-led curriculum - the exposure to a range of genres, authors and novels allows for pupils to read often and widely and provide a stimulus and high quality model to inspire pupils to have future aspirations as authors, journalists, editors and beyond.