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Herne CE Infant and Nursery School





  • Our main aim is to provide our children with opportunities to develop a love of learning and access to the wider curriculum and develop life skills.
  • We teach English in a cross-curricular way, linking with other areas of the curriculum. Our pupils are taught to speak clearly, to convey their ideas fluently and confidently and to ask questions. Vocabulary is developed systematically through all areas of our curriculum.
  • To embed a love of story, our pupils are encouraged to read for pleasure and to read widely, as well as be read to, watch video film and engage in drama.
  • Phonic awareness helps the development of reading by segmenting and blending sounds. Our children are heard reading both individually and in groups in school, and we expect children to practice reading at home to develop fluency.
  • Guided reading sessions cover a wide range of text types, including both fiction and non-fiction books. Guided reading also develops the children’s comprehension skills. When reading at home, we expect children to further practice these skills by asking and answering key questions about the text.
  • We develop writing skills so that our pupils have the stamina and ability to write at the age expected standard. To support children in moving towards independent writing, we provide a wide range of activities including discussion, role play, use of film and imagery and modelled, shared and guided writing. Children of all abilities are challenged appropriately and next steps identified.
  • We have daily, dedicated sessions to develop our fine motor skills to support with formation and stamina of cursive handwriting.
  • We provide opportunities for writing for purpose and we encourage pupils to see themselves as authors.



Our approach to teaching Reading not only supports the development of phonics and reading skills but also nurtures a passion for reading for enjoyment and enjoying a variety of texts. Children are exposed to a wide range of quality texts and opportunities to explore language and broaden experiences.


Phonics skills are taught using the Letters and Sounds scheme (2007) and this is used throughout the Foundation Stage to Year 2. This is broken down into 6 progressive phases.


Year R

Year 1

Year 2

Phase 1

Phase 2

Phase 3

Phase 4

Revise Phase 3

Revise Phase 4

Phase 5

Phase 6



Please click on the link below to access Letters and Sounds (2007):


Children will read with an adult at least once a week alongside this and we encourage children to read at home regularly with an adult to support their learning. Each class will have access to the library once a week and each child are able to select and take home a library book to share with their families alongside their reading books.



Useful links to websites that support reading:


Phonics Play

Phonics Bloom

Teach your monster to read

Oxford Owl -




Our approach to Writing begins with developing the physical skills needed for Writing including Fine Motor and Gross Motor skills to enable children to adopt the cursive style of writing. These are developed throughout all year groups through specific teaching and the PE curriculum. Children begin to develop their cursive handwriting through specific Herne handwriting patters which are introduced when they enter Year R, they will then learn to form letters in the cursive style.


Visit Teach Handwriting for cursive handwriting practice -

The Herne Sentence Train


The Herne Sentence Train is a visual support used throughout the school to scaffold sentence construction, grammar and punctuation. Each part of a sentence is represented by a colour coded train carriage. The train is used in the Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 in a progressive way that both supports and challenges the children to explore, develop and build on their understanding of different types of words and punctuation.


Writing contexts


We teach writing in a cross-curricular way, linking with different areas of the curriculum where possible. We provide opportunities for children to write for a purpose and to see themselves as authors, spending equal time on fiction and non-fiction genres. The table below outlines the writing contexts covered in each year group:



Year R



  • Scribe stories based on their own ideas (Early Learning Goal)


  • Develop their own narratives and explanations by connecting ideas or events (e.g. writing descriptions)


  • Retell familiar narratives verbally and scribe in time order


  • Poetry  (appreciate and continue a rhyming string)

  • Write own name


  • Write simple factual sentences based around a theme


  • Write labels, captions, lists


  • Write messages such as letters and cards


Year 1



  • Sequence sentences to form short narratives (e.g. descriptions)


  • Retell stories (using talk for writing, story mapping, planning etc)
  • Poetry (appreciate and write)
  • Write simple factual sentences based around a theme


  • Label diagrams, write captions and lists


  • Write simple instructions


  • Write messages such as letters, cards, postcards

Year 2



  • Poetry (appreciate, write in different forms and perform)


  • Write fictional narratives (stories, fictional diary entries, letters from a fictional character e.g. using talk for writing, story mapping, planning etc)


  • Retell/innovate stories (using talk for writing, story mapping, planning etc)
  • Recount real life events through diary / letters / narrative


  • Write detailed instructions


  • Write fact sheets/non chronological reports in paragraphs


  • Write persuasive adverts/create posters involving a sequence of sentences


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