Our Vision for English

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English Curriculum Map

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Download English Curriculum Map



Our Vision

Our vision is to foster a love of language and literature through the use of quality texts and books; to inspire, excite and engage our pupils, so that they have an independent desire to explore literature (both through reading and writing), and thus become equipped with lifelong literacy skills. 

At Phil & Jim, we promote:

  • the pleasure of reading to empower our pupils to become lifelong readers. We believe that books should be seen as a gateway to other worlds, the opening of our imaginations
  • the love of writing – through our curriculum and our weekly ‘Writer of the Week’ – so that children have the capacity to share their imagination and express themselves confidently and effectively through the written word
  • the art of public speaking and performance so that our pupils have the skills to articulate thoughts, debate and explore their imagination through drama

National Curriculum (English Programmes of Study KS1 & KS2)

The overarching aim for English in the National Curriculum is to promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment.

The programmes of study for English are set out year-by-year for key stage 1 and two yearly for key stage 2. By the end of each key stage, pupils are expected to know, apply and understand the matters, skills and processes specified in the relevant programme of study.

Our Curriculum Overview

At Phil & Jim, each class follows the objectives of the year group, as set out in the NC programmes of study. These are primarily taught and learnt through the use of high-quality texts and whole school projects. This is in order to provide purpose and context to our writing and reading, and to combine the two skills so that our pupils are readers who write. We also look for opportunities to apply the basic skills of English purposefully across the broader curriculum so that our pupils continue to master the fundamentals of literacy.

English Projects Cross-curricular Projects (Basic Skills)
Fiction: Myths & Legends (British or Greek) Science & Engineering Week
Author focus: William Shakespeare or Charles Dickens Famous Scientists
Author focus: Female Author focus Black History
Performance: Classic Poetry recitals and Shakespeare Performances Safer Internet Day
Fiction: Fantasy or Science-fiction International Day
Non-fiction: Journalism (current affairs)



Spelling, vocabulary, grammar and punctuation

The two statutory appendices on spelling and on vocabulary, grammar and punctuation give an overview of what is taught in each year group.


Please see the National Curriculum objectives for details on what is being covered in specific year groups.

We follow the Letterjoin scheme. Please see here for the Letterjoin outcomes and objectives, and here for an example of the font.


Phonics is taught throughout the school using the Read Write Inc. scheme, a whole-school programme for 5-11year-olds, which ensures systematic coverage and progression.

In Key Stage 1, the children are taught in smaller groups, led either by class teachers or by trained learning support staff. The children are assessed regularly to ensure that they are making progress and that they are in the appropriate group for supporting and extending their individual needs. Year 1 children take part in statutory Phonics Screening during Term 6, and parents are informed of their child’s achievement at the end of the school year.

Writing progresses from talking and composing sentences orally to being able to write sentences with support and, later on, independently. Writing is linked to storytelling and to the children’s own experiences, as well as to the topics taught. Phonics is used to support the early stages of writing, and spelling patterns are taught as the children’s skills progress. Great emphasis is also placed on handwriting and learning the correct letter formation and pencil control from early on.

Useful Phonics/Early Reading links:


Guided reading (whole class and 1-1) takes place on a daily basis throughout the school, and includes at least two sessions of reading for pleasure each week.

The school does not use one specific reading scheme, and has instead classified a wide range of books into different colour bands to create reading progression. Children in KS1 work their way through the colour bands, and upon completion read books from the school or class libraries. Some children in KS2 follow the Project X or Rapid Reading schemes.

Reading expectations at home

We encourage and expect our children to read every day at home. This can be with a parent, sibling or even to the family pet! All children have a Reading Record that is taken home daily. This is a journal that children and parents can fill in together which is regularly checked by class teachers. We understand that some children enjoy to read independently, in addition to reading with an adult. On these occasions, KS2 children can independently fill out their reading records.

We feel that it is important for children to regularly read with an adult (in addition to reading independently – if they can) so that discussions and joint exploration can take place around the text.

Through these discussions, we would appreciate your support in reiterating the six key reading skills that we are teaching across the school. When filling in your child’s Reading Record, it is helpful to document which of the reading skills you have explored.

It is important that children experience a wide range of texts, so please encourage your child to read as widely as possible. (Examples include: comics, graphic novels, picture books, novels and age-appropriate newspaper reports/articles.)

Useful links:


Reading Record House point reminder:

Filling in a reading record regularly is an easy way to tally up house points:

3x recordings = 1 house point

5x recordings = 2 house points

7x recordings = 3 house points


What books are recommended?

We recommend looking at the United Kingdom Literacy Association’s long and short lists.



Why read for pleasure at home?

Reading for pleasure opens up new worlds for children. It gives them the opportunity to use their imagination to explore new ideas, visit new places and meet new characters. (Oxford Owl)



Useful Links:

KS1 Bitesize

KS2 Bitesize


Topmarks English Games 3-5 years

Topmarks English Games 5-7 years

Topmarks English Games 7-11 years