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St John's CofE Primary School

Nurturing potential within a Christian ethos



Within our Christian ethos, we aim for our children to develop into lifelong learners who speak, read, (both for purpose and pleasure) and write with confidence. We aim for our children to have the skills to do so at the highest level of attainment.

We strive to enable our children to express themselves creatively and imaginatively as they become enthusiastic and critical readers and writers of stories; poetry and drama, non-fiction and media texts.

We understand the importance of developing children’s understanding and knowledge of the English language to enable them to access all the subjects taught within the Primary Curriculum.


The aims of our teaching of English at St. John’s:

  • to enable children to speak clearly and audibly, and to take account of their listeners;

  • to encourage children to listen with concentration, in order to understand the main points of what they have heard;

  • to show children how to adapt their speech to a wide range of circumstances and demands;

  • to teach children effective communication, both verbal and non-verbal, through a variety of drama activities

  • to help them become confident, independent readers, through an appropriate focus on word-, sentence- and text-level knowledge;

  • to develop enthusiastic and reflective readers, through contact with challenging and substantial texts;

  • to foster the enjoyment of reading and writing, and a recognition of their value;

  • to encourage meaningful imaginative and thoughtful writing, and an awareness of the reader;

  • to develop accuracy in grammar and punctuation in line with National Strategy expectations

  • to improve writing through planning, drafting and editing;

  • to enable children to read, write and spell confidently through a variety of strategies which will include a systematic phonics programme.



  • We use a variety of teaching and learning styles in our English lessons; for example, a whole-class reading or writing activity, a whole-class focused word or sentence activity, a guided group or independent activity. In addition, we also work together as a whole school on a writing task once a term.

  • Children have the opportunity to experience a wide range of quality texts, and to support their work using a variety of resources, such as dictionaries and thesauri.

  • Children use ICT in English lessons to enhance their learning, as in drafting their work and using multimedia to study how words and images are combined to convey meaning.

  • There is an expectation that children will use and apply their learning in other areas of the curriculum wherever possible.

  • Children in all our classes have a wide range of abilities, and we provide suitable learning opportunities for all children by matching the challenge of the task to the need and ability of the child.

  • Success criteria, quality next steps marking and differentiated targets help to provide a range of learning opportunities and guide children to know how to make progress.

  • We use teaching assistants to support some children, and to enable work to be matched to the needs of individuals.

  • Teachers model good use of English in their own speaking and writing.