English Intent

At Chellaston Infant School, reading is at the heart of everything we do. We believe that reading is the golden thread that ties our English curriculum together; reading is the gateway to accessing the curriculum leading to a lifelong love of learning.

Through an engaging curriculum, we promote positive attitudes towards the foundations of learning to read. At Chellaston Infant School, we follow a sequenced and progressive Systematic Synthetic Phonics (SSP) Scheme that is research informed and allows children to acquire the building blocks to lifelong skills. Children then nurture these foundation skills through an inclusive approach to reading, which focuses on developing fluency and prosody. Quality, core texts are used to support the teaching of writing to ensure the children have access to rich vocabulary through diverse texts, which cultivates empathy and a deeper understanding of the world.

We are determined to ensure that children leave Chellaston Infant School as articulate, capable writers with a love and passion for reading.



At Chellaston Infant School, we use FFT “Success for All” Phonics (a validated scheme) to teach phonics. This is used daily from the beginning of Reception, enabling children to make a smooth transition from Reception to Year 1.

Daily lesson plans cover all the main Grapheme–Phoneme Correspondences (GPCs) and Common Exception Words (CEW) to provide children with the phonic knowledge and skills required for success in reading and writing.

Teaching Sequence

We have very clear expectations about what sounds will be taught and when, alongside which common exception words will also be taught.  These are then matched to your child’s reading book (based on the phonic knowledge they have secured) in order for them to continue to practise these skills when reading (both at home and in school).

Teachers will assess which phonics skills have been mastered by children at each phase. Children’s interactions with books and other texts will give teachers a good indication of how well they are able to apply their phonics knowledge and skills to reading.

From Year 2, children build on their phonics knowledge by developing their spelling skills through the use of FFT’s Jungle Club.

Phonics Sequence EYFS And KS1

Year 2 Jungle Club Spelling


Shared Reading Lessons

To ensure our children become fluent readers, shared reading sessions teach children how to read (using their phonic knowledge to date) by modelling fluency and prosody. This is achieved through strategies such as: choral reading and echo reading. The use of repeated reading eases children’s cognitive load, which allows them to develop their comprehension skills, alongside fluency.

It is important that children can apply their phonic skills to reading. Children have a daily reading session, based on the phonic skills they have been taught. We use fully decodable texts to give children opportunity to use their new skills.

Supporting your child at home:

In order to support your child at home, we recommend that they read at least 4x a week with an adult to practice their reading skills.

Teachers in Reception classes will update the class dojo page to reflect the week’s phonics learning so you can reinforce this at home.

All year groups are also given a link to the e-book, which children have been working on in lessons, so you can share a story with your child.

Further information to our Phonics Scheme is available on the FFT Success for All website:


The following Powerpoint presentation below explains how our phonics and reading scheme works:

Parent Presentation

Children in Reception will learn the sounds in sets 1-4:

Embed videos from FFT (videos 1-7)




In EYFS, developing the children’s motor skills is a key element to starting their writing progression. The children take part in activities such as dough disco to build their strength and support pencil control. The confidence to write is developed through a nurturing approach, which builds children’s self-esteem as writers. We develop a love of writing by giving children a clear audience and purpose for their writing, which enables them to think like an author.

The following progression document shows the learning journey that children will make in EYFS, from initial mark making to writing clear and coherent sentences.

Stages Of Writing Development In FS2


At Chellaston Infants School, we follow the Literacy Tree curriculum for writing. It is a complete, book-based platform for primary schools that covers all requirements of the Primary English curriculum.

The books we use to teach writing help children to grow ideas and expand their minds. We have chosen significant and important children’s literature to enrich our curriculum.

Our children are taught progressive skills to write by immersing them in a quality text, where their final writing product has a clear audience and purpose. Throughout the units of work, children have opportunities to create a variety of genres through their writing. This ensures children build their stamina for writing to become articulate authors. Children are exposed to rich and varied vocabulary, which is shared through the use of working walls within classrooms.

KS1 Writing Progression


At Chellaston Infant School, we believe that high standards of handwriting and presentational skills are essential to success across the curriculum. This policy sets out a systematic programme of teaching handwriting, which enables children to learn how to form letters correctly and to take pride in their work. In order to support pupils in developing their handwriting skills, and to foster values of pride and high aspirations, Chellaston Infant School follows the Martin Harvey Handwriting  programme Achieving Excellence in Handwriting. Children use the handwriting skills they have been taught to present work across the curriculum in an attractive way that develops personal pride and a strong sense of achievement.

To support handwriting development pupils will:

  • Learn how to develop the correct pencil grip.
  • Develop a handwriting style that is consistent in size, orientation and formation.
  • Develop a legible and comfortable handwriting style with increasing confidence, fluency and speed.
  • Become competent when using a range of writing implements.
  • Develop good writing habits and understand the benefits to be gained from working in a clear and tidy area.
  • Feel a sense of achievement in completing their work to the best of their abilities.
  • Understand that writing is a high priority and valued by their teacher.
  • Be motivated by the celebration of their written work in classroom displays.
  • Receive high quality teaching of handwriting.


At Chellaston Infant School, we use a consistent approach of teaching handwriting throughout the school using Martin Harvey’s guidelines and clear terminology. All members of staff support and believe in the drive for excellence in handwriting. A consistent approach is taken to the handwriting style and the shape of the letters being taught and the language used when teaching handwriting.

Establishing Good Habits

The Martin Harvey method emphasises the importance of establishing good working habits in order to consistently achieve high quality handwriting and excellent presentation of work in every class. We aim to have these habits in place across every class in the school, during every lesson across the curriculum. These include:

Two hands on the paper – Children are encouraged to use two hands when writing: One hand to hold the paper or exercise book and one hand to write with.

Correct posture – Good posture and correct seating position are vital components of developing good handwriting.

In KS1, the four ways in which we ensure the correct seating position are:

  1. Six feet on the floor – The child’s two feet and the four feet of the chair. Children are discouraged from kneeling on a chair or to sit cross-legged on the chair. The chair’s feet stay on floor so that children do no rock forward or forward on the chair.
  2. BBC – Children should be expected to sit at tables in the BBC position (Bottom Back in Chair). They pull the chair towards the table, so bottoms are at the back of the chair.
  3. TNT (Tummy Near Table) – Children are expected to sit with their tummy near the table, but not squashed up to the table. This prevents sitting with the chair a long way from the table so that the children need to slouch forward to do their work.
  4. Paper Position – When writing, the paper or exercise book should be placed in an upright position. A slight angle is acceptable; however, this should not be more that 45 degrees.




Throughout EYFS and KS1, children are assessed formatively in daily phonics sessions to identify children who require further support. When children reach the end of the set that they are being taught, an end of unit assessment is carried out. This focuses on decoding and fluency as well as phonic accuracy.

Phonics Screening Check

In June of Year 1, the children will sit the statutory Phonics Screening Check. This check assesses decoding skills through a variety of real and ‘alien’ words to ensure they are able to accurately blend. Children have ample opportunity to practise for these screening checks during the year, so that they are fully prepared for these checks.


EYFS and Year 1

Children complete reading assessments linked closely with our phonics scheme. These assessments are through FFT’s Reading Assessment Programme. Children are assessed in decoding, fluency, prosody and comprehension.

Year 2

As well as completing the FFT Reading Assessments, children in Year 2 also complete a termly reading assessment provided by the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER).



Children in EYFS are assessed against the Early Learning Goals (ELG) with a final judgement being made at the end of the summer term. The skills they are assessed against in writing include those such as: writing recognisable letters and spelling words by identifying phonetically plausible sounds in words.


Throughout KS1, children will complete a final piece of writing at the end of each teaching unit. These pieces of writing will be assessed against the writing objectives for that year group. The objectives in Year 1 link progressively to the objectives that children are assessed against at the end of Year 2 in the Teacher Assessment Framework (TAF) for KS1.

CIJS Year 1 Writing Assessment

CIJS Year 2 Writing Assessment

Please see the Powerpoint presentation below which explains how our phonics and reading scheme works. Phonics Parent Presentation