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English Writing Curriculum


At Earlham we want all our pupils to be confident writers and effective communicators who write clearly, accurately, and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences whilst developing their own individual flair. We want them to apply spelling patterns correctly using a neat handwriting style, to write with grammatical accuracy and we aim to nurture a culture where children take pride in their writing.

We aim to expose students to a wide range of vocabulary to be able to decipher new words and use them when writing both formally and informally. We aim to provide opportunities to students to apply the learnt English skills to all areas of the curriculum.


High quality text

This foundation is then developed as children progress through the school. Each year group is introduced to age-appropriate high quality texts, and we use a range of techniques to help them understand and be inspired by the language and writing techniques they encounter.

Earlham’s Writing Approach

Our English lessons follow a three-way lesson structure: reading as readers, reading as writers and writing as writers - I do, we do, you do. All writing lessons employ the I do, we do, you do strategy to ensure an effective transition from modelling to independent learning.


EYFS follows elements from Talk for Reading and Writing approach successfully. This approach introduces a high-quality text each fortnight, supports pupils to understand and use new vocabulary, orally tell, and innovate stories, read key vocabulary and shared writing, and then write their own sentences about their stories. We know that vocabulary and oral storytelling are key to developing literacy skills-only when a child can say it, can they start to read and write. Through the daily retelling of a story our Reception pupils develop strong story telling skills, and we love watching them act out their stories in their play.

KS1 and KS2

In KS1 and KS2, a narrative unit is covered every term. Each genre is taught through a sequence of lessons showing clear progression starting from making predictions about a text, summarisation, comprehension for familiarisation of text type, role play/drama, capturing of ideas, text marking, planning, writing, editing, up levelling and finally publishing session.

Poetry is another key focus for our school; we believe poetry offers children an accessible but powerful format for exploring and expressing emotions, opinions and experiences.

Drama and role play


To be a successful writer, children need to be able to spell accurately. High-quality phonics work at Earlham ensures that children know the relationships between sounds and letters; this is the prime approach to spelling in EYFS and Year 1.

Children in Years 1-6 engage in weekly spelling starters which focus on the teaching of spelling conventions, common exception words and morphological knowledge through a recap, teach, practise, apply, assess cycle. Spellings are taken from the Year group spellings (including tiered spelling list), curriculum key vocabulary as well as from serial read.

Grammar and punctuation

Grammar and punctuation are taught using the 2014 National curriculum year group expectations, through short grammar starter activities in the beginning of English lessons linked directly to the genre being studied. There are also revision starter sessions to ensure children’s ability to recall grammar and punctuation knowledge for that particular genre. This is built upon by applying their knowledge in context in writing.


Children collect and explore vocabulary from the daily serial read, word family/word detective in reciprocal reading as well as key vocabulary from class lessons and use these in both formal and informal writing.


Handwriting sessions are taught using ‘The Letter Join’ curriculum which ensures a consistent progression of handwriting skills throughout from EYFS to Year 6. The programme highlights the importance of teaching and revisiting the warmup exercises, sitting properly in order to have the correct posture for writing, holding a pencil in the correct position and developing a legible handwriting style.

In EYFS there is a focus on pre-writing skills to develop fine motor skills before moving on to the formation of recognisable letters.

EYFS and Year 1 use the print script in line with phonics whereas Year 2 to Year 6 use the cursive script in writing.


SEND/EAL and children with speech and language difficulties are supported in their writing by using colourful semantics approach. This approach supports both the spoken and written language learning across the curriculum. It aims to help children develop skills when it comes to sentence development, understanding questions, developing narrative, understanding written text and developing vocabulary.

Training and support:

Earlham teachers have benefitted from high quality CPD around the writing curriculum. The Earlham English Team regularly supports staff in delivering the Writing Curriculum effectively through instructional coaching, modelling, and co-planning.

Assessment and Monitoring

The Earlham English Team consistently monitors the teaching and learning of writing, they are committed to continuous improvement to our curriculum and pedagogy, in order that we meet the needs of the children. They believe in high challenge and high support model of teaching and learning.

They monitor in a range of different ways- book looks, planning scrutinies, learning walks and pupil interviews.

They feedback strengths and small, manageable steps for improvement which are usually explored through instructional coaching.

Regular school and trust moderations ensure year group expectations are being met and good practice is shared.

Whole School Impact

The impact of our carefully designed writing curriculum on our children is that they have the knowledge and skills to be able to write confidently and communicate effectively, being mindful of the purpose and audience. With the implementation of the writing sequence being established and taught in both the key stages, children are more confident writers and have the ability to plan, draft and edit their own work.

By the end of key stage 2 children have developed a writer’s craft, they enjoy sustained writing and can manipulate language, grammar, and punctuation to create effect.

As all aspects of English are an integral part of the curriculum, cross curricular writing standards have also improved, and skills taught in the English lessons are transferred to other subjects; this shows consolidation of skills and a deeper understanding of how and when to use specific language, grammar and punctuation.

Parent and Carer engagement:

We strongly believe working in partnership with parents and carers to help develop strategies supporting writing at home.

We send weekly spellings home and inform parents of the scores achieved by their children. Our handwriting workshops have enabled parents to develop strategies on improving handwriting of the children at home

Handwriting workshop

Writing Progression

Please see below for details of our progressions standards for writing. The progression standards are those set out for English in the National Curriculum.

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