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BurlingtonJunior School

English Area

English at Burlington Junior School

It is our intention when teaching the English curriculum that our pupils obtain the necessary knowledge, skills and understanding to become lifelong readers and writers. We strive to ensure that all our pupils receive a well-rounded learning experience when reading, writing, speaking and listening, which will give them the fundamental tools to achieve throughout their life. It is our intention to immerse pupils in the wonders of quality texts, to instil a love for reading, a passion for discovery and a confidence to explore their imagination.

Our Reading Intentions:

  • For children to enjoy reading
  • To provide a stimulating reading environment to enable all children to become independent and confident writers by the end of Key Stage 2
  • To develop independence in decoding words
  • To develop comprehension, interpretation and the ability to form opinions of a broad range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry

Our intention is to provide pupils with a high-quality texts in order to develop a love and a true interest for English. Writing is an integral part of our curriculum. All children are provided with many opportunities to develop and apply their writing skills across the curriculum. It is our intention that pupils develop a clear understanding of the writing process in order to establish themselves as a writer. We plan using the Power of Reading initiative which successfully enables the children to write for purpose and audience. It also allows the opportunities for the children to explore a variety of genres, planning, drafting and re-drafting of their writing. It is our intention to broaden our pupils' exposure to high level vocabulary to allow pupils to apply their understanding of vocabulary and grammatical features within and across the English curriculum. 

Our Vocabulary Development:

We endeavour to ensure we provide our pupils with a 'language rich' environment. We do this by:

  • ensuring the children have access to a range of texts in the whole-school library, class book corners and the outdoor library shed
  • book fairs to allow children to purchase and raise money for the school
  • vocabulary within our skills ladders across all subjects
  • ‘Tier 2’ vocabulary lessons taught weekly across all year groups
  • the use of vocabulary rich within our writing across all working walls

Recommended Reading Books:

‚ÄčIs your child finding it difficult to choose their next reading book? The Book Trust's website is a fantastic place to start. Using their website, you can search for a new book to read based on your child's age or interests. The Book Trust have also created a number of different book lists including '100 books that children should read from the last 100 years' and 'the Great Books Guide' to name a few. Please use the links below to access these book lists on the Book Trust website.

Books for Topics is a great website. You can search 'Topic Books', 'Home Learning' and 'Key Stage' as well searching for a variety of NEW authors based on books your child enjoys reading. This will give your child exposure to brilliant written books by fantastic authors. Make sure you read the section about top reads for your child's year group plus, fiction and non-fiction books that have been given awards! Happy reading.


How to find the ‘just right’ books for your child:

The five finger rule is a quick and easy way for your child to check if a book is suitable to read on their own. Before they start, ask them to turn to a random page in the book and read it. For every word that they don’t know, they should hold up a finger. Your child can use the following guidelines according to how many fingers they hold up:


0 or 1 – Most probably too easy for your child.

2 – A good choice that will give your child a reasonable challenge and allow them to learn new words.

3 – Your child might need some help, but still a good choice if they’re up for a challenge.

4 – May be too difficult for your child to read on their own. If you are on hand to give them help or read along with them it can be suitable, but if they are reading on their own, choose a different book.

5 – Most probably a bit too advanced, try a different book.

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The five finger rule should only be taught as a guideline for helping your child to find ‘just right’ books. It’s worthwhile remembering that if they have their heart set on a book that seems too hard, it’s probably OK to let them have a go. Be nearby to help them if they get stuck on a tricky word, and don’t forget to praise them for making an effort.

Out Writing Intentions:

  • To enable all children to become independent and confident writers by the end of Key Stage 2.
  • To ensure a competent grasp of cursive handwriting.
  • To encourage enjoyment of writing for purpose.
  • To teach spelling, punctuation and grammar to improve the quality of written work.

Our Writing Implementation:

Our English curriculum is derived around a sequence of high quality age-appropriate texts. We use each book to create opportunities to:

  • develop reading fluency and comprehension with a focus on key reading strategies and skills
  • develop grammar and punctuation knowledge and understanding to use and apply across the wider curriculum
  • explore the writing structure and features of different genres, identify the purpose and audience
  • plan and write an initial piece of writing with a clear context and purpose before evaluating the effectiveness of writing by editing and redrafting

British Values in English

At Burlington Junior School, our values are at the heart of all we do: within our English teaching, we strive to provide opportunities for pupils to develop their own core values whilst instilling the Fundamental British Values in many opportunities within units of work.