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In Literacy, there are three main areas of focus. These are comprehension, word reading and writing.
In Reception the children will have a daily phonics lesson using the 'Sounds-Write' programme. The children are encouraged to recognise sounds within words and write these on their whiteboards. We spend lots of time word-building using the sounds we have learned which increases confidence when segmenting (splitting a word into sounds) and blending (putting sounds together to make a word). This leads on to the children being able to write simple phrases and sentences that they can read themselves and can share with others.
As children develop their phonic knowledge and begin to blend sounds together children are introduced to phonetically decodable reading books. We use Dandelion Readers which are fine-tuned to the Sounds-Write programme. These books are complemented by finely levelled 'real' books. Children are read to daily and have the opportunity to use our school library so stories can be shared at home. To further encourage a home-school partnership, children will be given individual log-ins for online reading books.
Story-telling skills are also developed through puppet play and participating in helicopter stories sessions.
In Reception, time is spent developing children's comprehension skills. We do this by sharing lots of stories, talking about and anticipating key events and sequencing these in chronological order. Within stories, non-fiction, rhymes and poems, new vocabulary is introduced to the children which we hope they will begin to use in their role play and everyday language. Children are given the opportunity to retell stories in their own words and use story maps to help them.
Writing is embedded across all areas of learning and opportunities for writing are encouraged in all areas of provision. This may be: writing a shopping list in the role play area, writing about models they have created in the construction area or creating a party invitation for their friends in the small world area!
Children's attention is continually drawn to print in the environment and they are encouraged to recognise print in the wider world. As children become more proficient in their phonic knowledge, they apply this to their individual writing.
The children's fine and gross motor skills are continually developed through focused activities which enables the children to develop all the core skills necessary for writing.
We use the 'Letter-join' approach to help our children become legible and fluent writers.
To begin with, children learn a comfortable sitting position and how to position their paper when writing.
A lot of time is spent introducing pre-cursive writing patterns before the children learn how to write recognisable individual letters which are correctly formed.