In Duckpuddle Class, we have half termly English topics where we focus on different genres of text. Where possible these texts are based on our overarching topic or foundation units. The children build on their knowledge of the text to achieve a purpose at the end of the unit. This may include getting to know the text through drama and hot seating, sequencing events, creating setting boxes, short bursts of writing and finally planning and writing their own versions. The children thoroughly enjoy the texts chosen for them, including some wonderful stories and gripping non-fiction units.
Phonics underpins all of our English work in Duckpuddle. We follow the Little Wandle validated scheme that allows children to progress through the phases with deep understanding. Children are supported to use their phonics when both reading and writing.
Our guided reading sessions follow the format from Little Wandle. The children have three adult-led reading sessions a week looking at a focus book. The sessions begin by building fluency, moving on to prosody and then comprehension.
Children who move on from the Little Wandle books (beyond phase 5) read colour banded books and focus largely on their comprehension skills.
Through lessons such as shared reading, drama and hot seating, children have lots of opportunities to develop their speaking and listening skills.
Year 1 children follow spellings from Little Wandle. Each week their spelling words will align with their phonics learning.
Year 2 children follow Essential Spellings. They are taught the spelling rules before practising these for their home spellings.
Children have regular handwriting lessons where they practise forming pre-cursive letters. They learn where to begin and end letters, and the correct size and line placement. When the children confidently form their letters correctly they will begin to learn to join up their writing.