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What does English look like at Heath Hayes Academy?



English lessons, which are delivered through the adventure, include handwriting, spelling, punctuation and grammar activities that are specifically planned to support English basic skills. Reading skills are also delivered through the adventure, through use of age appropriate texts.

In Reception, children learn Communication, Language and Literacy through guided teaching and a range of appropriate activities. Children are taught daily phonics following Read, Write, Inc.  

To support phonetic readers, we have developed the use of several published schemes, which have been arranged in coloured 'book bands'. Children are encouraged to read at home every night to develop their skills and parents record comments for the teacher in the diary. When the children have reached a required level, they are deemed confident and fluent readers and can become a ‘free reader’, choosing any book they wish from the school library.


Early Years and KS1 

Phonics is taught daily for 45 minutes. Currently the school follows Read, Write Inc. phonics, within Early years and KS1. Children, in KS1, are split into ability level following an initial assessment. Then they are taught in groups between a number of teachers and teaching assistants. Reading sessions are also regular session in KS1 in the form of DERI reading in which children will answer a decode, explain, retrieval, and interpret question appropriate to their age for comprehension.

Within English sessions, children are taught a range of skills from letter formation, to applying phonetic knowledge in order to write. When children are secure in their basic skills for writing they learn a range of technical grammar including nouns and verbs in order for them to write accurate sentences.



Following the essential start children receive from phonics in KS1, children will then build on these skills in KS2. Reading is then delivered in the form of DERIC reading sessions (an extension of DERI from KS1 which includes an author choice question) 4 times per week in KS2 to develop age appropriate reading comprehension. Interventions take place as necessary if children have any missing phonetic knowledge from KS1. Within KS2, children are taught a wide variety of grammatical terms in order to further develop their writing. Across the school children in KS2 develop a firm understanding of grammatical rules and then are able to apply these into a range of genres when writing.


Marking and Feedback

At Heath Hayes Academy, our marking is planned carefully, prior to the lesson. We use stickers which are specific to each area of the curriculum in both English and Maths known as RAR (read and respond). Stickers provide a question for children to respond to which will either extend or consolidate learning from a lesson. Children also receive celebrate stickers on their work to show their successes.

Children are give time to respond to their RAR and staff use this time to engage in verbal conversations about progress and understanding. If a child does not understand a particular aspect of learning from a lesson or marking, this will be acted upon through appropriate intervention.