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Holy Cross English Curriculum Intent


It is our intent that the Writing curriculum at Holy Cross will enable children to develop and thrive with the transcription and compositional elements of writing. Children will write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences. Children will find writing engaging and enjoyable by basing their writing on a range of quality texts and will understand the importance of writing as a life-long skill.




It is our intent that our Reading curriculum will instill a personal love of reading for all children. Children will become fluent and confident readers whilst engaging with a stimulating range of texts from a variety of genres in both fiction and non-fiction. are presented with many opportunities to read for knowledge across the curriculum. Children Through this curriculum, children will develop and nurture the essential skills of word reading and comprehension.

Reading ambassadors

The reading ambassadors in Year 6 have a very important job- to promote reading across the school. In October, they will be sharing posters of 50 books to read in each year group.

Holy Cross English Curriculum Implementation


The aims of our English curriculum are embedded in all English lessons and across the wider curriculum. We have a rigorous and well organised English curriculum and framework, that provides many purposeful opportunities for reading, writing and discussion. We use a wide variety of quality texts and resources to motivate and inspire our children. Teachers also ensure that cross curricular links with topic work are woven into the English programmes of study.

At Holy Cross Catholic Primary School we use the Read Write Inc Programme to support the children in developing early reading and writing skills and to give them confidence in  English lessons. Read Write Inc is a method of learning, centred on letter sounds and phonics.

Using Read Write Inc, the children learn to read effortlessly so they can put all their effort into comprehending what they read. It also allows them to spell easily so they can focus on the composition and content of their writing.



When using Read Write Inc to read the children will:

  • learn that sounds are represented by written letters
  • learn 44 sounds and the corresponding letter/letter groups using simple picture prompts
  • learn how to blend sounds
  • learn to read words using ‘Fred Talk’
  • read lively stories featuring words they have learned to sound out
  • show that they comprehend the stories by answering questions

When using Read Write Inc to write the children will:

  • learn to write the letters/letter groups which represent 44 sounds
  • learn to write words by saying the sounds in ‘Fred Talk’
  • write simple sentences


As the children move through the school, they are taught a variety of skills to support their reading confidence. These include strategies such as: reading with expression, predicting what might happen next, retrieving information from the page to answer comprehension questions. Higher order reading skills are also taught and help the children to infer and deduce meaning from the text.


The implementation of ‘Quality text based writing’ and ‘Talk for Writing’ ensures a consistent and systematic approach to teaching the skills of writing across all cohorts.  This also means that children know what to expect when they move year group/key stage.. 


Early writing is taught through early mark making. When the children begin RWI Phonics, they are taught the correct letter formations. This begins with writing (whether with a writing tool or in the air) CVC words, moving onto short sentences using the sounds they have been taught. EYFS children are encouraged to write independently during continuous provision. We use the same phonics programme across the school providing continuity and a vehicle for guaranteed progression. RWI sessions take place four times a week for one hour. Pupils are taught in ability groups from Reception to Year 2, thus enabling them to be taught according to their reading level not their age. Teaching is very precise and tailored to the needs of each child, irrespective of year group.


As children progress through the school, we continue to use quality first texts and Talk for Write strategies to engage the children. There is also a strong focus on handwriting, spelling and grammar. To support the teaching of new and adventurous vocabulary, all year groups have access to, and make full use of, a range of quality texts. All children are read to, regularly, in class and high quality texts are used for whole class and guided reading sessions. 


There is an expectation that grammar will be modelled and used correctly by all teachers. To ensure progression in grammar skills, all teachers use a progression of grammar document, on which they highlight the grammar skills that have been taught.  Any areas for development are identified during independent ‘Extended Write’ sessions, then taught as part of the next modelled text, in focused SPaG sessions or during grammar sessions.


At Holy Cross, we follow the 'Read Write Inc’ spelling scheme. The children take part in whole class spelling sessions and are encouraged to complete spelling activities related to these for homework. The Read Write Inc spelling scheme builds on the phonics knowledge, children have gained in previous years.

Holy Cross English Curriculum Impact



The impact of our English Curriculum on children’s learning is evident in the progress they make and in their transferrable skills.  The implementation of reading and writing based on quality texts is well established and taught thoroughly in all key stages thus, children become confident writers and, by the time they are in upper Key Stage 2, most genres of writing are familiar to them and the teaching can focus on creativity, confidence, sustained writing and use of grammar and punctuation skills.


We hope that as children move on from Holy Cross, to further their education and learning, their creativity, passion for English and high aspirations will travel with them and continue to grow and develop as a life long skill.



Parent Reader Prompts


Here are a few prompts to help you when reading with your child.


  • Discuss the books cover and title
  • Make predictions about the story
  • Ask the child to send out letters/sounds of the words and then combine them
  • Use the pictures to help the child make sense of the meaning
  • Ask questions of who, what, when, where and why.
  • What did they enjoy least and most?
  • Always give praise and encouragement
  • Make the story come to life by encouraging them to read with expression
  • Remind children to pause at full stops and commas.
  • Ask the child to retell the story in their own words.


Key Stage 2 Readers

  • Discuss the Author- have you read any of their other books?
  • Who are the main characters?
  • Can you describe the personality of the characters, referring to the text?
  • What is the setting?
  • What is the author trying to tell you?
  • Can you relate it to a real experience?
  • What is your opinion of what you have just read?
  • What question would you like to ask the author?
  • Why did you pick this book?

United improvements


In year 3 we have been working on improving our editing skills. We work in small groups to edit our writing together. It really helps us to read our work out loud and dicsuss it with our friends.

Little Red and the very Hungry Lion


Year two have begun their class text for this half term. Today we compared the similarities of our book to the fairy tale 'Little Red Riding Hood.'


Reading for pleasure


Year 3 ordered some new books and they arrived today! We were very excited to start reading them. I snapped these pictures of the children reading them during their free time.

Year 1 Float. Daniel Miyares

In English, year 1 have been working on book called Float. They have created story maps, sequenced the story and wrote their own instructions, as well as labelling and describing settings.

Year 3. Wolves in the Wall. Neil Gaimon

The children worked in pairs to write questions about wolves. They then used books and the internet to research the answers. They presented their findings to the class.  Next we will use this information to write non-chronological reports. 

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