English Department: Primary
Head of Department: Ms. Rhea Sajnani
Our goals in teaching are to enable our students to read well, to write well, to think well and to provide them with appropriate knowledge of the discipline of English language and literature. At the Winchester School we believe that language and literacy are fundamental to the overall development of the child and enables their access to the curriculum in all its aspects. It is acknowledged that “speaking and listening” together with “reading and writing” are prime communication skills that are central to children’s’ intellectual, social and emotional development. More specifically, we aim to develop the students’ abilities to use and apply their literacy skills confidently and competently in their learning and in everyday contexts; to convey ideas and opinions clearly and respond creatively and critically to a wide range of information and ideas.
Department Facilities / Resources:
The Winchester school has well equipped English department in the Primary. We have rich bank of resources for the strands that are catered to in English teaching units. In addition to the resources being centrally located, copies of the same are provided to teachers for easy accessibility. In Early Years children follow the Jolly Phonics scheme. For Years 1 to 6 we refer to Collins Primary Literacy, Oxford Reading Tree with interactive ICT resources including: electronic stories, Nelson Handwriting; Pen pals Interactive Handwriting software Espresso resources for English, interactive whiteboard resources, Treetops reading comprehension interactive programme; class libraries, class novels, reading journals and reading logs, guided reading resources, Big Writing resources and a well-stocked primary library. We also have a very well-resourced EAL programme based on a combination of Bright Star books and the Read Write Inc. phonics teaching programme. The library works effectively in issuing reading books.
Key Points from Department Policy:
In Early Years children have opportunities to use communication. It is specific area of language development and would access Literacy in every part. We follow the Primary Literacy Framework to enable the deliver y of quality. First teaching of basic and higher order reading, writing and listening skills and equip children to become confident and successful in their literacy. We strive to deliver Literacy in a cross curricular manner to enable the learning.
Reading is taught through:
Writing is taught through:
Performing Arts week aims to boost reading and links to Emirates International Festival of Literature every spring in Dubai.
L & T style:
At The Winchester School we use a variety of teaching and learning styles in English Lessons, as recommended by the National Literacy Strategy and the National Curriculum Programme of Study. Our principal aim is to develop children’s knowledge, skills, and understanding in English. We do this through daily lessons that have a high proportion of whole-class & group teaching. Children have the opportunity to experience
A wide range of texts and use a range of resources such as dictionaries, thesaurus and online resources to support their work. Children use ICT in English lessons where it enhances their learning, as in drafting their work and using multimedia for presentations. Wherever possible we encourage children to use and apply their learning in other areas of the curriculum. Different learning tasks cater to multiple intelligences in class: debates, presentations, designing leaflets and using ICT skills in a range of tasks. Language and Vocabulary games are used to introduce an element of play into the learning process.
There are children of differing abilities in all classes at The Winchester School. We recognise the fact and provide suitable learning opportunities for all children by matching the challenge of the task to the ability of the child. We achieve this through a range of strategies.
Rhea’s English Blog: www.rheasajnani.weebly.com
Foundation Stage: This will take the form of ongoing formative assessment through observation of both indoor and outdoor activities. The tracker is used effectively to identify and plan the ELG (Early Learning Goal) from the seven areas of development.
KS1 & KS2: AFL (Assessment for Learning) forms an important part of every lesson. Success criteria are shared with the students before the beginning of the unit. We assess children's work formatively through observations and marking. At the end of a unit of work, review is done, it may take the form of a big write, short write or a written assessment – which provides opportunities for peer marking, self-assessment which help in identifying the targets and inform the next steps.
We also test reading comprehension and writing skills once every term using SATs style tests from Test Base and other sources. The students are assessed using the National Curriculum levels for English reading and writing.
Participating in extracurricular activities help students explore physical, creative, social, and career interests with like-minded people.
Students find friends: Trying something different may bring students in contact with people they didn't know who share similar interests and curiosity.
Therefore we have
Useful Subject-specific websites: