At Weston Point Primary School, the teaching of writing within the English curriculum has been carefully considered to enable our pupils to become confident and creative writers.
Our curriculum is designed to develop pupils’ competence in the two dimensions for writing:
- transcription (spelling and handwriting)
- composition (articulating ideas and structuring them in speech and writing).
From EYFS to Y6, the Pathways to Write Scheme is used to support composition. Pathways to Write is a proven methodology built around units of work which develop vocabulary, reading and writing skills through the mastery approach. The units, for use with pupils from EYFS to Y6, provide clear detailed lesson plans and resources, linked to high-quality texts to ensure engaging and purposeful English lessons. Effective teaching strategies to challenge greater depth writers are included within each unit of work. In addition, pupils are taught how to plan, revise and evaluate their writing. These aspects of writing have been incorporated into the programmes of study for composition.
Opportunities for teachers to enhance pupils’ vocabulary arise naturally from their Pathways to Read and Pathways to Write units. As vocabulary increases, teachers show pupils how to understand the relationships between words, how to understand nuances in meaning, and how to develop their understanding of, and ability to use, figurative language. Classroom working walls are utilised by pupils and pupils are taught how to work out and clarify the meanings of unknown words and words with more than one meaning. Pupils are taught to control their speaking and writing consciously and to use Standard English. They are taught to use the elements of spelling, grammar, punctuation and ‘language about language’ listed.
Writing down ideas fluently depends on effective transcription: that is, on spelling quickly and accurately through knowing the relationship between sounds and letters (phonics) and understanding the morphology (word structure) and orthography (spelling structure) of words. Effective composition involves forming, articulating, and communicating ideas, and then organising them coherently for a reader. This requires clarity, awareness of the audience, purpose and context, and an increasingly wide knowledge of vocabulary and grammar. Writing also depends on fluent, legible and, eventually, speedy handwriting. At Weston Point, we use the strategies from Pen Pals Handwriting Scheme to ensure progression in handwriting across year groups (please see separate long term overview). The Floppy’s Phonics Early Reading programme is used in EYFS and Y1 to develop pupils’ spelling skills. In Y2-Y6, the Pathways to Write transcription is used alongside the Pathways to Spell scheme. Pupils in Y2-Y6 have 4 weekly spelling sessions.