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Highnam Church Of England Primary Academy

01452 525872

Wetherleigh Drive, Highnam, Gloucester, GL2 8LW

Children with Confidence


This links to, and should be read in conjunction with, the curriculum statement for phonics and early reading at Highnam.



At Highnam, we believe that a quality English curriculum, taken from the National Curriculum, should develop children’s skills of reading, writing and discussion, not just in English lessons but across the whole curriculum. We want to:

  • inspire children to be confident in the art of speaking and listening and enable them to use discussion to communicate and further their learning.
  • immerse our pupils in the wonders of quality texts to instil a love for reading, a passion for discovery and a confidence to explore a range of books fluently and with good understanding.
  • nurture a culture where children take pride in their writing, can write clearly and accurately and adapt their language and style for a range of contexts and purposes.

We believe that a secure basis in literacy skills is fundamental to a high quality education and will give our children what they need to access the wider curriculum and participate fully as a member of society both now and in the future.


English is taught everyday throughout the school and teachers follow the Early Years Curriculum in reception and the National Curriculum for years 1 – 6. Our children are encouraged to read widely and for pleasure (see our ‘Reading for Pleasure – What works?’ document). Guided reading takes place regularly (3/4 times a week in KS1 and daily in KS2). It is our priority to use high quality, age-appropriate texts that inspire and engage our children in both guided reading and English lessons. These are detailed in the Highnam Curriculum map. We use these in guided reading to develop reading fluency and comprehension with a focus on key reading strategies and skills. In English, they are used to develop grammar and punctuation knowledge (to be used and applied across the wider curriculum); explore the writing structure and features of different genres, identify the purpose and audience; plan and write an initial piece of writing with a clear context and purpose before evaluating the effectiveness of writing by editing and redrafting. We use The Write Stuff approach in the teaching of writing, using approaches such as FANTASTICs (ideas for writing sentences), GRAMMARISTICs (tools for writing sentences) and BOOMTASTICs (techniques for writing sentences). Our writing is enhanced through using resources from Talk for Writing, The Literacy Shed, Pobble and Vocabulary Ninja. Handwriting is taught through the Letterjoin resource (frequency of handwriting lessons depends on the age and needs of the children).

At Highnam, we value reading and writing as vital life skills and our aim is that every child will leave our school with the ability to read with fluency, understanding and enjoyment, and the ability to write and spell with confidence.

As a result of quality first teaching, we have a community of enthusiastic readers and writers who enjoy showcasing their developing literacy knowledge and skills. They are confident to take risks in their reading and writing, and love to discuss and share their ideas. Our attainment at the end of EYFS, KS1 and KS2 is above that of the national average – see table below for most recent data in English attainment.


Data from 2019

Phonic Screening Check

Y1 – 80% pass

Y2 – 97% pass

End of KS1

Reading – 80%

Writing – 77%

End of KS2

Reading – 87%

Writing – 93%

GPS – 97%