Spoken language skills are essential for pupils to participate fully as members of society. Pupils who learn to speak and listen, fluently and confidently are at an advantage in their future lives and therefore at Herne CE Junior School, we want children to be able to:
- develop their vocabulary and have a secure command of Standard English;
- express their opinions, articulate their feelings and listen to and respond appropriately in a range of situations;
- collaborate effectively, valuing the views of others;
- communicate, perform and present ideas with confidence;
- speak audibly and confidently before an audience of peers or adults.
At Herne Juniors, we teach spoken language skills as part of English lessons and these skills are applied and practised across the curriculum:
- Teachers and teaching assistants model a high standard of spoken English, with a rich vocabulary;
- Subject specific vocabulary is embedded across the curriculum, through teacher modelling, in context (and displayed on working walls);
- Opportunities are given to participate in a range of activities that encourage effective spoken language across the KS2 curriculum;
- Talk partners is embedded in every classroom and we provide numerous opportunities for children to listen and respond appropriately to others in class discussions, across the curriculum;
- We provide a creative curriculum with lots of opportunities for children to ask relevant questions to extend their understanding and knowledge;
- Children are expected to work collaboratively, including turn taking and negotiation, and present their learning to peers, when appropriate, to enhance their own learning;
- Children are encouraged, and prompted, to answer questions expansively;
- Pupil voice is valued and children are encouraged to share their opinions on issues that matter to them e.g. School Council, Equality Ambassadors, Online Safety Crew;
- Subject leaders conduct pupil voice interviews to gather feedback;
- English units in every year group include drama-based approaches, as part of the planning process in every genre, to develop children’s ideas and responses to stimuli;
- In every year group, there are three poetry units within the year and children are given opportunities to practise using tone, intonation and volume to engage an audience in a performance;
- Class worships, pupil-led worships and year group services and productions provide opportunities for all children to speak in front of an adult audience;
- Numerous leadership roles (e.g. house captains, vice captains, school councillors) involve children speaking in front of adults and peers;
- All pupils receive feedback on their speaking and listening so they can improve their knowledge and skills and develop their use of effective spoken language;
- Children who are having difficulties with speech and language or communication will receive additional targeted provision.
Herne Juniors truly believe that skills in spoken language give our pupils the tools they need to communicate with the world around them. Pupils are given a range of opportunities to develop these skills, in a safe and stimulating environment. The wide range of activities – which are interwoven through our curriculum – help to develop ideas, vocabulary and confidence. By the time they leave us, we aim for our pupils to have the fluency and confidence to use language to convey information, ideas, comments and personal views in a socially acceptable manner appropriate to the purpose and audience.