Our aim is to deliver a broad and balanced curriculum that is based on the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum and the National Curriculum, but which is also values driven.
Our topic-based, creative curriculum is designed to enable children to work collaboratively, to aim high and show creativity leading to personal and academic fulfilment. Using the topic title as a starting point, teachers plan subjects that link together and are therefore more accessible, relevant and meaningful to the children.
Planning includes an ‘Exciting Entry’ and a ‘Fabulous Finish’.
Recent examples have been a visit by ‘Florence Nightingale’ and a ‘Stone Age Day’ in school and a visit to a local apple growing farm.
Such activities really help to enthuse and engage the children leading to better learning and higher quality work.
Horsmonden Primary School has introduced Ruth Miskin’s ReadWriteInc scheme to teach the children to read fluently, write confidently and speak articulately. It is a complete phonics and reading programme, which also assists spelling. ReadWriteInc meets the demands of the new national curriculum, giving your children the best chance of being able to read fluently and gives success in the national tests. Through this, we offer small group phonics and reading sessions as well as1-1 teaching for those children needing additional support.
Children are assessed each short term, and grouped according to their needs. This means that your children are thoroughly supported with resources that match their own learning and development.
At the bottom of this page are attached links for you to look at so you know a bit more about the phonics that is taught, and the strategies that are used. There are plenty of links and videos on the Ruth Miskin website for you to look at at your leisure, should you wish to.
We teach the children all 44 sounds in the English language, and most of the phonemes (sounds that we say) that match them. These are through 3 sets of sounds. Children need to have a firm grasp on each set of sounds before moving on to the next. By the end of Set 1 sounds, children must be able to blend words independently.
We have a green frog in class called Fred. Fred helps the children sound out words with their sounds in. We use Fred Talk and Fred in Your Head. Fred Talk enables the children to sound out a word using their knowledge of graphemes. Fred in Your Head is used when children are more confident with reading a word – they sound it out quickly in their head before saying or writing it. We use Fred in all of our Speed Sound lessons which form 10 minutes of our half an hour lessons. We use the other 20 minutes for a reading focus, teaching children to read with accuracy, understanding and fluency. They read books that contain the sounds they have learnt or are currently learning.Once the children are fluent with the book they have been reading, they will bring it home to celebrate their learning with you so please spend some time reading the book with your child and asking them questions as they have worked hard to be so fluent! Please ensure these books are well looked after – other children will be using them and they aren’t cheap to replace. Your child will be heard to read every day in school, even if it is not noted in their reading record.
The Oxford Reading Tree Scheme books will still be sent home for daily reading, unless your child is a Free Reader. There will be some overlap between stages as we have re-organised the books so they match the sounds the children are learning in their phonics session. Please don’t panic if your child appears to be flicking between the stages.
Year 3 and 4 will also be using the ReadWriteInc scheme to support any children who have gaps in their phonics understanding, or need extra support with their reading. This will be the same for Years 5 and 6, but these children will be using a programme called ‘Fresh Start’ which has reading material that is more age appropriate. These children will also be regularly assessed to ensure their needs are being met.
The more access a child has to books and reading the better! Be relentless with this but make it fun. Read their favourite stories over and over again, read stories that are at a higher level than they can read themselves and help your children discover their imagination. Feel free to also have some fun with Fred Talk at home. “What a tidy r-oo-m!” etc.
Please do pop in or email any queries or questions you may have. We are already seeing a huge impact on your children’s learning and we hope you do to.
The National Curriculum subjects are:
Please download our Long Term Plan PDF document.
Link to EYFS framework:
Link to Primary Curriculum:
Links to reading and phonics:
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Read our latest Ofsted report.
Ofsted report >