English Overview 2023-24

At Hillside Primary School, English and the teaching of English is the foundation of our curriculum. Our main aim is to ensure every single child becomes literate and progresses in the areas of reading, writing, speaking and listening. 

We recognise that each child has their own starting point upon entry to every year group and progress is measured in line with these starting points to ensure every child can celebrate success.

English at Hillside will not only be daily discrete lessons, but is the cornerstone of the entire curriculum.  It is embedded within all our lessons and we will strive for a high level of English for all.  Through using high-quality texts, immersing children in vocabulary rich learning environments and ensuring curriculum expectations and the progression of skills are met, the children at Hillside will be exposed to a language rich, creative and continuous English curriculum where reading and writing are intrinsically linked.

This will not only enable them to become primary literate but will also develop a love of reading, creative writing and purposeful speaking and listening.
English at Hillside is taught following the 2014 National Curriculum.

At Hillside we have a rigorous and well-organised English curriculum and framework that provides many opportunities for reading, writing and the development of spoken language skills. We use a wide range of quality texts and resources to motivate and inspire our children.

We ensure that cross-curricular links are woven into the programme of study. Please see the ‘ English Overview’ grids for each year group.

We have comprehensive, regularly updated, policies for all aspects of the English curriculum. Teachers each have a file containing all policies which they share with their support staff. The policies and guidance for teachers are more detailed than those published on the website. Please see:-
Class timetables, planning and examples of children’s work are scrutinised by the subject leader, who also carries out lesson observations and monitors progress.

Professional development meetings are held regularly to ensure consistency of implementation and assessment. The ‘secure fit’ assessment of children’s writing ensures our judgements are honest and based on evidence. From these we plan for progress in areas needing more input.
The lack of pre-school experiences for our Reception children in recent years have proved challenging.
2023 EYFS results show that the children were achieving marginally above the National levels for Listening, Attention and Understanding and Speaking. Very little difference between National and School for Comprehension. Word Reading and Writing are significantly lower than National levels.

From this year we have a new approach to reading and writing starting in the Nursery and continuing through Reception, and where necessary, into Year One. The learning environment and more sequenced teaching of early literacy skills features highly on the EYFS teaching and learning plans. Our new EYFS leader is implementing new ideas to improve the standards in these areas.
EYFS ResultsNationalNorfolkSchool
Listening, Attention and Understanding82.2%84.2%83.3%
Word Reading76.2%77.1%62.1%
Key Stage 1 has had a much more settled year with consistent and capable staff. Although below National levels the results have improved.
2023 Key Stage 1 resultsNationalSchool
The school has strived to overcome the disadvantages and disruptions to learning over the previous years by the robust teaching of English. We aim that by the end of Key Stage 2 all our children will have made considerable progress from their starting points in EYFS. By the time the children are in Upper Key Stage 2 all genres of writing are familiar to them and teaching can focus on creativity, the writer’s craft, sustained writing and the manipulation of spelling, grammar and punctuation skills.
Our children also become more confident, fluent readers and they read for pleasure along with reading for information and knowledge.
2023 Key Stage 2 resultsNationalSchool
As all aspects of English are an integral part of the curriculum, cross-curricular writing standards are monitored. Skills taught in English are transferred into other subjects; this shows consolidation of skills, progression and a deeper understanding of how and when to use specific genre skills eg non-fiction skills when writing an information text, instructions or a report; plus the use of grammar and punctuation objectives.
We hope that as children move onto secondary education that their creativity, passion for both English language and literature, and their high aspirations travel with them.