The quality of all children's learning depends on how well they master the skills of our language - speaking, listening, reading, writing. Developing these skills is at the heart of our work in school. Children are given the opportunity and encouragement to take part in a variety of activities as part of the new English curriculum, which enables them to develop these skills with confidence and a sense of achievement.
We provide enriched reading opportunities using a variety of texts including popular story books as well as published schemes. We have invested in high quality reading texts to extend our guided reading provision throughout school. All the storybooks are carefully matched so that the children's progress is structured and appropriate to their ability. Guided reading activities provide regular opportunities for children to practice and develop their skills. Reading in school is supported by home reading. A reading scheme using 'Rigby Star' is used through Key Stage 1, this is supported by phonics reading books, linked to the phases the children are working at. Children bring home their reading books and parents are asked to record 'home reading' in planners. In order to support your child's reading it is important to understand that school is involved in the teaching of reading skills and parents and carers must ensure regular practise of reading at home.
The children participate in Literacy lessons each day, which involve whole class and group work activities. St Catherines uses a wide range of fiction and non fiction books to develop children's understanding of a range of genres. All aspects of literacy are developed including phonics, comprehension skills, writing, speaking and listening and drama. These are linked to cross curricular topics when appropriate.
Daily phonics lessons take place in Reception and Key Stage 1 classes, to teach the children the different sounds each letter and groups of letters make. The Letters and Sounds scheme is used alongside other resources to teach phonics. Speaking and listening activities are a key feature of Literacy lessons and promote language development and individual confidence. In Y2 and Key Stage 2 the children are encouraged to develop their public speaking and presentational skills. All children complete extended pieces of writing to develop their writing skills and to provide regular opportunities for sustained indpendent writing. Extended writing focuses on developing the writing voice through a variety of genres which develop vocabulary, connectives, sentence openers and punctuation.
We have an extensive library of ficton, non fiction, encyclopedias and poetry books. The main library is located in the junior department with a smaller lending library in the infant department where children are able to borrow story books. In addition to this all classes have their own library which has year group appropriate text.