Best practice in the reading and writing of pupils aged 7 to 14 ... - Estyn

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Best practice in the reading and writing of pupils aged 7 to 14 ... - Estyn

OutcomeThe programme helps to secure pupils’ reading and writing skills and gives thembetter access to their subject studies. Over recent years, almost all the pupils on thisprogramme achieved the level expected nationally of 14 year olds by the end of keystage 3.Case study 10BackgroundIn a medium sized secondary school, staff introduced an innovative literacyintervention programme in Year 9 to provide pupils with the opportunity to catch upand consolidate reading and writing skills before GCSE. The programme targetspupils most at risk of underachieving at key stage 4.StrategyThe programme is offered to pupils as a choice from a range of pre-GCSE subjecttasters. Normally, about 60 pupils from a cohort of around 200 choose to do theprogramme. This is a remarkable number given the attractiveness of the alternativesfor pupils.Pupils are taught in small groups of around 10 for two hours each week. The coursecomplements work in English and focuses on higher order reading skills andorganising ideas, length and accuracy in writing. While the intervention programmeis expensive to run because it requires 12 ‘teacher’ lessons a week, the schoolvalues this investment because less able pupils are enabled to do well in range ofsubjects at GCSE.OutcomeA very few pupils leave this school without a qualification.Meeting the needs of more-able and talented pupilsCase study 11BackgroundThe junior section of a primary school recognised that more-able pupils would benefitfrom specialist provision to extend their learning.StrategyMore-able pupils from each year group in key stage 2 attend an ‘Excellence’ class forhalf an hour each week to explore challenging reading texts, including Shakespeare.OutcomeThe ‘Excellence’ class provides pupils with good opportunities to develophigher-order skills of critical analysis and thinking. Their work is mature andperceptive. The work done in this class has inspired pupils to extend the range oftheir own personal reading.

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