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Chiddingstone Church of England School

Educating for life in all its fullness - John 10:10


Literacy is taught at Chiddingstone School both explicitly through direct lessons and underpinned by a broad range of foundation subjects, taught through the Cornerstones Creative Curriculum. This provides a context, which gives learning meaning, and enables the children to engage fully with the subject matter.


Literacy reinforces all aspects of learning, and we believe it is a vital medium enabling our children to access other areas of knowledge; we offer rich experiences in reading, writing, speaking and listening or drama. The children are actively encouraged to enjoy reading and writing, choosing exciting and challenging texts for study into which we also interweave the teaching of spelling, grammar and handwriting.


As with mathematics, our mornings are very structured with well organised timetables and high quality teaching and learning. Speaking and listening opportunities are a high priority, with children talking about their learning and explaining their thinking, with frequent opportunities to write for a range of audiences. We run a number of intervention support and extension programmes to support all pupils in achieving age-related expectations and to offer challenges to our more able children.


Phonics lessons, which are matched to the understanding of each child, are delivered throughout the school and in addition, children are involved in individual and group reading activities. In guided work, your child will read in a group working at the same level, with the teacher focussing on a specific aim. This is carefully planned, differentiated to be at the correct level for your child and builds skills over time.


From Reception through to Year 2 the teaching of reading is taught using the synthetic phonics programme called ‘Letters and Sounds ’ and supported with resources from Read, Write Inc. Scheme.


Beyond this, we use the spellings from the National Curriculum Programme of Study - using a 'Five A Day' challenge.  


Initially children are encouraged to write individual letters and attempt spellings phonetically. From Year 1, more formal spelling begins by the end of the year and from then onwards the children are given spellings to learn which follow the statutory requirements of the curriculum. The use of dictionaries is taught and encouraged.


In addition, we use the ‘Oxford Tree Reading Scheme’ supports the ‘Letters and Sounds’ phonics programmes.


We have a well-equipped library and use the Junior Librarian system, which means children become used to borrowing and returning books, accessing a broad spectrum in line with their varied interests. Every child has their own library card and books must be scanned in order to be checked out. Junior Librarian builds a record over time of a child’s reading habits and can include book reviews and comments for readers to share.


Click on the links to find out some more about how you can support your child's literacy development.

Phonics Guide for Parents

At Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 the school follows the National Curriculum English Programmes of Study. These can be viewed here: