“To make sense of the world around them, young people need an understanding of written and spoken language. They need the ability to interpret what has been written or said and to draw conclusions from the evidence that surrounds them. It is also about being able to communicate – accurately, fluently and persuasively.” National Literacy Programme
All of the staff at Tasker Milward see it as their responsibility to help raise standards in literacy across the school by:-
Where applicable, departments incorporate aspects of the National Literacy Framework to ensure that suitable progress is being made in the three areas of reading, writing and oracy. You can view the Framework using the link here.
What whole school strategies do we employ?
Individually, teachers draw from a range of tried and tested methods to support learners in their reading and writing. Writing frames and skeletons are commonplace, and staff are responsible for differentiating classroom materials and activities to meet the needs of all learners. Beyond this, the school has more recently begun using literacy target stickers on exercise books to support staff and pupils in achieving greater technical accuracy, as well as employing the strategies detailed below.
Gearing up for reading!
As well as engaging with programmes such as Accelerated Reader in the lower school, pupils in Key Stages 3&4 are supported in reading using our whole school reading strategy, “DRIVE”. This breaks down the mechanics of the reading process so that learners recognise the need to: Decide, Relate, Infer, Visualise and Evaluate as part of the mechanics of approaching unfamiliar texts. In employing the activities relating to each of these, teachers across the curriculum are able to support pupils in becoming increasingly independent readers.
Click DRIVE to read more about this approach.
To help ensure that the whole school is focused on achieving technical accuracy, a weekly literacy poster, the Literacy Lookout, appears in every classroom across the school. Each poster focuses on a particular aspect of technical accuracy in writing that learners often struggle with.
Click lookouts to see a range of sample posters.
In Years 7-9, pupils are regularly tested using the National Reading Test and our Literacy Assessment Online tool to ascertain their progress. Where interventions are required to support learners in making faster progress in reading, a range of programmes are available. Those in Year 7 & 8 requiring help in decoding and understanding what they read are placed on the Read Write Inc. programme. You can learn more about this using the link here.
Those whose reading age falls below the expected level (but who do not need the Read Write Inc interventions) are assigned a coach as part of our Reading Challenge scheme. They meet during registration three times a week to read and discuss strategies. We are very proud of those Year 12 students who help support the younger pupils by volunteering to become Reading Challenge coaches.