English at Wantirna Primary School is based on the Victorian Curriculum and as such is organised by three modes of language:
- Reading and Viewing,
- Writing and
- Speaking and Listening
These modes are interrelated and the learning in one often supports and extends learning of the others.
Our aim is to provide students with the skills in, and an appreciation of the richness of language whilst developing confidence, enjoyment and an authentic sense of purpose for communication.
Reading skills are underpinned by the CAFÉ approach which is founded in developing strategies in Comprehension, Accuracy, Fluency and Expanding vocabulary. Teachers assess, instruct and monitor student progress based on reading strategies. This approach provides tools whereby teachers construct group and individual goal setting to ensure all students reach their potential.
Students engage in a range of Writing tasks which cover the standard text types. Instruction is explicit and supported by focus groups whereby students can be conferenced to improve their craft. Wantirna Primary School uses a variety of means to engage students in writing which include Writer’s Notebook and the VOICES menu. (Voice, Organisation, Ideas, Conventions, Excellent word choice, Sentence fluency).
During Spelling lessons, students are taught the 44 phonemes which represent the 26 letters of the alphabet. They use the THRASS chart to make accurate spelling choices which can represent these sounds. This phonographic, multisensory approach supports students to build on existing knowledge and learn to strategies to assist them to spell unfamiliar words.
Students’ speaking and listening skills are developed across all areas of the curriculum, in particular emphasis is placed on the various formal and informal ways in which oral language is used to convey and receive meaning. This incorporates the understanding of appropriate language for particular audiences and occasions, which includes body language and voice. It also involves the development of active-listening strategies and an understanding of the conventions of different spoken texts.