‘Pupils should be taught in all subjects to express themselves correctly and appropriately and to read accurately and with understanding.’
QCA Use of Language across the Curriculum
Literacy is the ability to read, write and speak in English at a level necessary to function and progress at work and in society in general.
Statement of Intent
Literacy is fundamental to maximising student achievement. All teachers are teachers of literacy and have a responsibility for improving the literacy skills of students. As such, the staff of Le Rocquier School are committed to developing literacy skills in all of our pupils, in the belief that it will support their learning and raise standards across the curriculum, because:
- pupils need vocabulary, expression and organisational control to cope with the cognitive demands of subjects;
- reading helps us to learn from sources beyond our immediate experience;
- writing helps us to sustain and order thought;
- language helps us to reflect, revise and evaluate the things we do, and on the things others have said, written or done;
- responding to higher order questions encourages the development of thinking skills and enquiry;
- improving literacy and learning can have an impact on pupils’ self-esteem, on motivation and behaviour. It allows them to learn independently. It is empowering;
- stressing the importance of accurate spelling punctuation and grammar across all subjects will help students to achieve better in written examinations;
- people with high levels of literacy succeed in all aspects of life, both socially and economically.
Literacy is important for all learning. Language is the prime medium through which pupils learn and express themselves across the curriculum, and all teachers have a stake in effective literacy.
Roles and Responsibilities
- Senior Managers: lead and give a high profile to literacy;
- English Faculty: provide pupils with knowledge, skills and understanding they need to read, write and speak and listen effectively;
- Teachers across the curriculum: contribute to pupils’ development of language, since speaking, listening, writing and reading are, to varying degrees, integral to all lessons;
- Literacy co-ordinator: coordinates whole school initiatives and supports departments in the implementation of strategies, encouraging the sharing of good practice;
- Parents: encourage their children to use the range of strategies they have learnt to improve their levels of literacy;
- Pupils: take increasing responsibility for recognising their own literacy needs and making improvements.
Across the school we shall:
- Identify the strengths and weaknesses in students’ work from across faculties.
- Model good practice to students when speaking, reading and writing.
- Focus on the identified literacy cross-curricular priorities for each year; reading and Fortnightly Focuses for writing.
- Seek to identify progression in the main forms of reading, writing, speaking and listening undertaken in each faculty and strengthen teaching plans accordingly.
- Plan to include the teaching of literacy to support learning in all subject areas.
- Adopt whole school policies regarding marking for literacy and promoting our priority literacy standards.
- Assess the literacy training needs of staff.
- Review this literacy policy annually.
Reading (see Le Rocquier School Reading Policy)
We aim to give pupils a level of literacy that will enable them to cope with the increasing demands of subjects in terms of specific skills, knowledge and understanding. This applies particularly in the area of reading, as texts become more demanding.
- We will highlight reading skills explicitly in lessons and teach pupils strategies to help them to: read with greater understanding; locate and use information; follow a process or argument; summarise; synthesise and adapt what they learn from their reading.
- Students will benefit from being made aware of the purposes of the reading activity and staff will use strategies to make reading an active process.
- Staff will be aware of students’ reading ages and provide texts and worksheets of an appropriate level.
- Support will be provided for students identified with reading difficulties and reading ages will be monitored.
- Use of the Library will be encouraged throughout school.
- Reading for pleasure will be promoted throughout school.
We will help our students to reach a good standard of written communication, ensuring that they have the best chance of securing employment and success in later life.
It is important that we provide for co-ordination across subjects to recognise and reinforce pupils’ language skills, through:
- Reminding students frequently of the basic rules of writing, such as using capital letters and full stops;
- Encouraging the use of sequencing and paragraphs to structure writing;
- Being clear about audience and purpose;
- Showing students examples of the text type being asked for;
- Using the modelling process to make explicit to pupils how to write;
- Providing opportunities for a range of writing including sustained writing;
- Teaching students how to review and redraft their own writing.
Speaking and Listening
We will teach pupils to use language precisely and coherently. They should be able to listen to others, and to respond and build on their ideas and views constructively.
We will develop strategies to teach pupils how to participate orally in groups and in the whole class, including: using talk to develop and clarify ideas; identifying the main points arising from a discussion; listening for a specific purpose; discussion and evaluation.