North Leigh C of E Primary School
North Leigh C of E Primary School
North Leigh C of E Primary School
The Curriculum

English at North Leigh

Why do we teach this? Why do we teach it the way we do?

At North Leigh Primary School, our English curriculum is designed to develop children’s love of reading, writing and discussion and support our learners to realise their full potential, live full and meaningful lives, making a positive difference as global neighbours.


At North Leigh CE school, we intend for all our children to become enthusiastic and motivated readers, developing their confidence reading a wide variety of genres and text types. They will have the necessary skills to decode words in order to be able to read fluently with a good understanding of what they have read. We will encourage a love of literature and an enjoyment of reading for pleasure, as well as using reading as a tool to provoke thought within children.


At North Leigh, we strive to help our children to become articulate and imaginative communicators, well-equipped with the basic skills they need to become life-long learners; English learning is key in this. We aim to ensure all our children develop a genuine love of language and the written word, through a text-based approach. Careful links are made across the curriculum to ensure that children’s English learning is relevant and meaningful: where possible linking our reading, writing and the topic. We ensure that children develop an understanding of how widely writing is used in everyday life and therefore, how important and useful the skills are that they are learning. We want our children to write with a purpose, seeing themselves as real writers. This will encourage them to take ownership of their writing and see writing as an interesting and enjoyable process.

IMPLEMENTATION: What do we teach? What does this look like?

Early Reading and Phonics
In Reception and Year 1, the emphasis is on decoding:
In Reception, children are taught to read and spell words using Phase 2 and 3 GPCs, and words with adjacent consonants (Phase 4) with fluency and accuracy.

In Year 1 they review Phase 3 and 4 and are then taught to read and spell words using Phase 5 GPCs with fluency and accuracy. Children take part in small group Little Wandle reading lessons three times a week using the same book. On each occasion, children revisit the graphemes, tricky words and vocabulary they encounter and the sessions always follow the same sequence, practicing skills: decoding, prosody and comprehension. Children identified as falling behind receive daily catch up sessions.

In Year 2, the children complete the Little Wandle programme as appropriate and transition into a guided and / or whole class reading session in preparation for teaching approaches in KS2. Children identified as not reaching end of Year 2 phonics expectations continue to receive additional phonics provision, using Little Wandle Rapid Catch up.

Coloured reading bands continue to be used into Lower KS2 to support children with their reading choices that match their ability. Additionally, these children identified as working below the expected standard in reading follow the Little Wandle Rapid Catch up and the Nessy programme in class.


In Key Stage 2, reading skills are taught through a carefully planned mixture of guided and whole class reading, using high quality texts that engage the listener, develop a breadth of Tier 2 vocabulary and inspire ideas for writing. Reading materials include a wide variety of quality fiction, non-fiction and poetry. We teach the National Curriculum, supported by a clear skills and knowledge progression. This ensures that skills and knowledge are built on year by year and sequenced appropriately to maximise learning for all children. To support our skills based approach to reading, we use VIPERS within our regular Reading lessons. (Vocabulary, Inference, Prediction, Explain, Retrieve and Sequence/Summarise).

All teachers read to their class every day, and include a range of authors and genres. Class book corners promote reading for pleasure and contain high quality texts that include a diverse range of fiction, non-fiction and poetry that match reading abilities. They are arranged to ensure all children are supported with their reading choice.

Children are continually encouraged to read for pleasure through events such as visiting the local library weekly, celebrating World Book Day and enjoying our popular Bedtime stories event. We regularly invite authors and drama groups in to share their expertise with the children.

Rigorous assessment and review helps us to ensure that we are able to provide targeted support so that all children experience success in literacy; we believe that a secure basis in literacy skills is crucial to a high quality education and will give our children the tools so they are able to reach their full potential.

Writing (including spelling, grammar, punctuation and handwriting)

Throughout the Early Years, Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2, we teach writing through a text-based approach, which allows us to meet the needs of the children that we are teaching – through choosing a text that engages, inspires and motivates. As well as reading a wide variety of genres, children are given frequent opportunities to develop their skills in writing in different genres. During the term children should help to develop a set of success criteria/writing toolkit during each taught unit which enables them to assess their own writing. Teachers will regularly model the drafting and editing process to and with the children as well as providing good examples of published writing of a similar genre. Children are required to write at length, regularly and at an age appropriate length, producing at least one piece of extended writing every two weeks. Tier 2 vocabulary from the text/unit is displayed to encourage children to use new words in their writing. Pupils are taught discrete punctuation and grammar skills, appropriate to their year group, within our textbased approach to planning, allowing opportunities to identify, practice and consolidate grammatical understanding, whilst also being immersed in a text. Children then apply the grammar and punctuation skills that they have learnt in their extended pieces of writing.

Spelling in Reception and Year 1 phonics for decoding will be taught as an integral part of Little Wandle Revised Letters and Sounds scheme.

In Year 2, teachers will begin to use the Rising Stars Spelling programme to support the children’s spelling progression. Children who have not yet completed the Little Wandle scheme will continue on this as appropriate. In Years 3 – 6, teachers follow the Rising Stars Spelling programme to support with the teaching of the different spelling rules. Spelling lists generated from the Rising Stars spelling programme are sent home for practice weekly through Seesaw homework provision. Children are assessed on these spellings regularly through dictation exercises, tests or activities.

In Reception and Year 1, children learn to sit correctly at a table, holding a pencil comfortably and correctly. They begin to form lower-case letters in the correct direction, starting and finishing in the right place. They also understand which letters belong to which handwriting ‘families’ and how to practise these. All children are introduced to cursive handwriting from the end of Year 2. We believe this raises standards in handwriting throughout the whole school, developing confidence, accuracy, fluency and improved presentation. In Year 2 they learn how to form letters using a lead in and exit line. In KS2 they continue to refine their handwriting. A copy of the agreed letter formation is displayed in each classroom.

IMPACT: What will this look like?

By the time children leave our school they will:
  • have the necessary skills to decode words in order to be able to read fluently, with a secure understanding of what they have read
  • be enthusiastic and motivated readers who are confident and will enjoy reading a wide variety of genres and text types
  • enjoy and write confidently for different purposes and audiences
  • be able to effectively apply spelling rules and patterns they have been taught
  • have a wide vocabulary that they use within their writing.
We hope that through nurturing and challenging our children, they will move on from us to further their education and learning with a passion for English and high aspirations that will travel with them and so be able to reach their full potential in life.

Reading for Pleasure
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Class Reading Corners
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Book Club
Author of the Week
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Reading drop in KS1 2023 (Adobe pdf without video)
Reading drop in KS1 2023 (MS PowerPoint)
North Leigh C of E Primary School
KS2 Reading worshop (Adobe pdf without video)
KS2 Reading worshop (MS PowerPoint)

North Leigh C of E Primary SchoolTarget Tracker
As a school in the Oxford Diocese Schools Trust (ODST), we use Target Tracker, an on-line assessment software program to provide teachers with both an on-going assessment tool and an end of term measure. Target Tracker enables teachers to plan and assess more effectively for all pupils, helping them to meet their targets and make good levels of progress throughout the year. The school leadership team and governing body use the Target Tracker reports to support school improvement measures. A link to the statements for each year group from 1-6 is below. We also use Target Tracker to record progress and attainment in EYFS to ensure continuity throughout school.

Target Tracker statements
Year 1 Reading
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Year 2 Reading
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Year 3 Reading
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Year 4 Reading
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Year 5 Reading
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Year 6 Reading
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Year 1 Writing
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Year 2 Writing
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Year 3 Writing
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Year 4 Writing
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Year 5 Writing
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Year 6 Writing
North Leigh C of E Primary School

Reading Links
North Leigh C of E Primary School
National Literacy Trust
North Leigh C of E Primary School
Bookfinder: find children's books for every age.
I enjoy the book corner because we have an amazing range of books and we are encouraged to read.

I like reading because our teacher gets us to read a wide selection which opened up a whole new world to me.

I like writing stories so it’s good to learn the punctuation.

I like English because we get to express ourselves in character.

I like to read because it helps my vocabulary when I write.

I like to read because I like making up stories and reading helps.

North Leigh C of E Primary School
Park Road
North Leigh
OX29 6SS
01993 881525