At St. John's, we believe that literacy and communication are key life skills. Through our English curriculum, we support children to develop the skills and knowledge that will enable them to communicate effectively and creatively through spoken and written language, equipping them with the skills they need to become lifelong learners.

As a school we use the 'Power of Reading'project to guide our learning. The project is designed to enhance children’s enjoyment of literature and their engagement in the English curriculum. The project aims to capture children’s enthusiasm and raise achievement by developing teachers’ knowledge of literature and its use in the primary classroom. Central to the project is the use of high quality books and creative teaching approaches, such as role-play, hot-seating, freeze-framing, conscience alley, reader's theatre, story mapping, writing in role, reading journals and art activities. 


Each year, children are immersed in a wide range of carefully selected texts around which their learning, both in English and across the curriculum, is focused.



Throughout the school the importance of good comprehension skills is emphasised so that children understand what they are reading, as well as developing fluency and speed. The children have regular opportunities to read a range of texts throughout the school week as well as experiencing structured reading lessons which teach these key skills. The staff at St John's aim to make these lessons engaging and enjoyable by incorporating the high quality texts identified through the power of reading project. 



Through working with one of our partner schools, we have been developing a 'Try it, Use it, Prove it' approach to writing. This is a structured lesson format which is aimed at ensuring that every child at St. John's can create writing for a purpose. Children are given tasks that build their confidence with specific skills, meaning every child experiences success whilst being challenged. The three stages are described as:

Try it - Sentence and/or word level tasks which introduce children to the writing objective. The children continue to practise and to try the skill in sentences until they are confident. 

Use it - Short tasks are planned that the children have opportunities to demonstrate they can use their writing skills in a variety of contexts. This may be through many different contexts, including character descriptions, story starters and blurbs for fiction books. 

Prove it - Children are given a stimulus that they use to create a longer, extended piece of writing. Within this piece of writing, children are expected to prove they have fully mastered the writing skills by using it in many different ways.