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At Burhill we believe passionately that good learning in English is the key to success throughout a child’s school life. The English curriculum has many elements including speaking & listening, reading, writing and drama. We regard the development of literacy skills as vital in enabling children to access the broader curriculum, and emphasis is therefore placed on encouraging children to use language effectively and creatively. Time is devoted each day to the development of specific language skills (punctuation, grammar, spelling etc.) as well as more creative aspects such as poetry and story-writing.

Reading skills begin to develop at an early age and are fostered by listening to stories, sharing books and developing a love of literature. Children will focus on the meaning of stories, pictures and the sounds of letters in becoming increasingly independent readers. Phonics is used as a key strategy in developing children's understanding of sounds and words; phonics is taught daily in EYFS and KS1, and the principles continue to support children’s reading in KS2.

As children progress they will develop the ability to read a wider range of fiction and non-fiction material. In key stage 2, children will be encouraged to read lengthier and more complex books and to evaluate their reading material critically. All children are able to use the school’s libraries on a regular basis.

Our creative curriculum at Burhill provides children with many cross-curricular opportunities for writing, which we believe is important to encourage high pupil engagement and high standards. Children will experience a range of writing styles, including lists, notices, stories, poems, factual writing, diaries, historical accounts and reviews. They are encouraged to write independently from an early age, and all writing is valued and encouraged.