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Children begin their reading journey from the moment they start school at Wellsprings. Daily discrete phonics lessons in FS and KS1 enable children to decode efficiently and develop into fluent readers.  Phonics continues into KS2 where necessary. We use Read, Write Inc as our phonics approach across the school. Once children can read fluently, reading lessons continue across KS2 where children read interesting and inspiring texts that aim to promote independent reading beyond the lesson.

We have recently received nearly 3000 new phonics books, and provision doesn’t end there as you will find cosy book nooks in every class and in quiet places across the school that will tempt every reader.

We encourage pupil leadership in reading and many of our Year 5/6 children volunteer as Reading Ambassadors supporting individual readers in KS1 after their lunchtime.

Each year our whole school focused Book Week coincides with World Book Day. Over the years the theme has included non-fiction, maths and poetry themes all with an a stimulating assembly at the beginning of the week, a dressing up day linked to a theme and a ‘sharing assembly’ on the Friday. 2024 Book Week ‘Traditional Tales from Around the World’ will see us develop our intercultural understanding by reading tales from around the globe and appreciating the history and culture of fairy tales in general. We have invited parents and carers to three stay-and-read sessions throughout the week in our atmospheric Cinderella story gazebo.

We aim to continue to raise the proportion of children achieving above national expectation across the school in reading.

English at Wellsprings

So much of what we do in all the curriculum is linked to English.  From the talking partner work we do to plan our ideas in lessons, to the writing we do in all subjects.  The most important thing we always try to do is give a purpose to the activities we write about.

Pupils at Wellsprings will leave Year 6:

  • reading and writing with confidence, fluency and understanding
  • with a love of reading and a desire to read for enjoyment
  • with an interest in words and their meanings
  • understanding a range of text and genres
  • able to write in a variety of styles appropriate to the situation
  • be able to use their developing imagination and inventiveness
  • having a suitable technical vocabulary to share their ideas

Here is a link to the English National Curriculum document for Key Stage 1 and 2. Spellings and grammar are also broken down across the Key Stages.

Speaking and Listening

The four strands of Speaking and Listening – Speaking, Listening, Group Discussion and Interaction, and Drama – permeate the whole curriculum.  Interactive teaching strategies are used to engage all pupils in order to raise reading and writing standards.  Children are encouraged to develop effective communication skills in readiness for later life.


We aim to develop the children’s ability to produce well structured, detailed writing in which the meaning is made clear and which engages the interest of the reader.  Attention is paid throughout the school to the formal structures of English, grammatical detail, punctuation and spelling.

Teachers model writing strategies (with links to the Talk for Writing approaches) and the use of phonics and spelling strategies in shared writing sessions.  Guided writing sessions are used to target specific needs of both groups and individuals, whilst children have opportunities to write at length in extended independent writing sessions at the end of each unit.

​Whole school projects (Science Week, Health week, History Week and Book week which we have had in the last year) are all used to inspire our children to write for a purpose.

We also now formally teach elements of Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling as part of the new KS2 Spelling Bee competition!

National Curriculum across the school.

Here is our Handwriting Policy and English Policy.

We recently had an Arts week that was linked to poetry. Henri Rousseau’s ‘Surprised!’ painting was the focus study for the week, but we used it as an opportunity to link it to the poem, ‘That Stormy Night’ by Berlie Doherty. Berlie even did us an assembly (virtually) to talk to the children about how to become better writers. Even better still, Berlie read her poem aloud to the whole school!

We had a competition to help raise the children’s handwriting skills, and all children submitted their best handwritten version of the poem, and we awarded some class winners. The children will learn a poem to recite by heart every half term, and the whole school has learnt ‘That Stormy Night’ as the chosen poem for Autumn 2023. See below some of the wonderful examples of handwriting.

Take One Poem

Take One picture

Stories linked to Maths

Early years stories

Early years stories

Early years stories

Book competition- Potato characters!

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