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English at Pownall Hall School ensures the best possible foundation in reading, writing, speaking and listening whilst encouraging creativity, imagination and a love of literature and of words. As Dr Seuss once said, ‘The more you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you will go! ’ Therefore, we try to ensure that through the teaching of English, the world becomes an exciting place for our pupils.
Our broad and creative curriculum brings English to life from Nursery to Form 6. The journey begins in the EYFS where there is a focus on phonics and the exploration of different genres and forms.
In the EYFS, phonics is introduced in the Nursery and Kindergarten. Once the children enter Reception a more structured approach takes place. We follow the RWI scheme and the children have daily phonic lessons. After the first half term the children are taught in small groups where they have targeted teaching by trained staff. The groups are fluid and the children are assessed regularly. Writing takes place in the phonic lessons as well as separately. There are many writing opportunities inside and outside for the children to develop their independent writing skills.
From Pre-Prep in Form 1, we use the National Curriculum as our guide, covering a variety of classic and contemporary texts as well as exploring poetry, media and non-fiction writing. Children are taught in a stimulating environment and our creative lessons provide opportunities for our children to communicate independent views and opinions, listen and respond imaginatively and express feelings through spoken and written language. This helps develop their confidence to have a voice. Children develop their handwriting, being encouraged to use cursive during Form 1 and 2 and work towards achieving their pen licenses, typically in Form 3 and 4.
From the beginning of childrens’ Prep School journey, we build on their strong foundation skills and begin to uplevel their learning, providing them with opportunities to analyse, critique and reflect as well as expressing themselves in a range of different ways in order to ensure they are fully prepared for 11+ examinations.
We nurture a love of reading at Pownall and recognise its potential to transport children to different places, whilst positively impacting their ability to access all other areas of the curriculum. World Book Day celebrations are always a highlight of the year at Pownall and we make great use of our Library and school librarians to make reading a pleasure a habit in all our children. Our impressive Boddington Theatre gives our children plenty of opportunities to show off their speaking skills as they build confidence while performing on stage in drama lessons, performances, productions and assemblies.
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