In the Literacy and English section of curriculum information on the Highland Council’s Schools’ Hub, you will find the up-to-date Literacy Framework. It contains information about the learning and teaching progression which is embedded into the Curriculum for Excellence’s Experiences and Outcomes and Benchmarks.
You will find assessments and resources which may help you as you tailor make the curriculum to meet the developing needs of the children in your class.
We all know how important it is to plan for change, progress, and challenge, always keeping the Experiences and Outcomes in mind as well as the benchmarks. Planning can be time-consuming.
These plans contain dropdown boxes for the Es and Os as well as for the benchmarks, with space for you to plan your learning intentions, success criteria and what activities and resources you will use to support the children through their learning.
Many children struggle to read fluently and accurately. This may be because their decoding skills are not yet automatic, or there are many words which they do not know or understand, or because they have not yet mastered the automatic attention to punctuation.
Many of these reasons, come down to the need for further repeated practice in decoding and reading aloud as well as hearing texts read to them.
Here are some things which may help the children in your class:
Practising decoding words containing the phoneme/graphemes that they know is a good start. The Humpty Dumpty Word Walls can help with this as well as Word Chains – Swap it!. Many children also need help with blending the sounds together in words. The Blending Board can be useful for helping to develop this skill.
Structuring into your daily routine The Daily Three Read for Fluency can be useful to build up a child’s confidence and fluency through repeated readings of texts that they have already been taught. During the Daily Three Read, they read short texts silently to themselves, to someone else and they hear a reading partner read to them. It takes around five minutes per session.
Another great way to develop fluency in reading through repeated practice is by using Reader’s Theatre. Children practise short plays (2 to 5 minutes in length) in groups over a number of days and then read them to their class – no props or costumes are required. Children can also write their own very short plays to perform.
The Speed and Fluency Cards are also useful for giving children repeated reading practice using short texts which provide quantifiable evidence of progress.
Are you thinking about purchasing an intervention for some aspect of literacy?
When considering purchasing a commercial intervention it can be useful to research the intervention first. Brook’s What Works for Literacy Difficulties, contains a lot of useful information around the effectiveness of different interventions based on research trials. It will also indicate the purpose of the intervention, the length of time that the intervention should run for and whether it is a one-to-one intervention or designed for use in small groups or usable within a class situation.
You can access this book, using the hyperlink below.
The third Emerging Literacy Network will run on Thursday 16th March 2023 from 15:45 to 16:45.
We will be focusing on Progression and Writing. Practitioners attending the session should have looked at the Highland Literacy Oral Language Tool kit and looked at the information around Sequence and Narrative prior to the network.
This network will provide the opportunity to ask questions and share best practice around writing.
Practitioners in Highland Council should sign up through the CPD calendar.
We all know the importance of developing a culture of reading in the classroom and beyond, for reading for enjoyment as well as reading for information and continuously showing the value of reading.
Although we constantly face a battle with time, we should try to ensure that children are reading every day and that we are providing challenges as well as activities that will support increased fluency and accuracy.
As children progress through school, it is important to increase their exposure to, and engagement with, different types of factual books and to provide them with the skills they need, to read for information and purpose.
Although you will have your own bank of resources and resources which fit into your whole school approach, you may also find others below which can be used to augment or substitute your current day to day learning and teaching provision.
If you are looking for information and resources on different aspects of literacy, you will find a variety of useful documents on the Highland Literacy Road Map. It is situated on Highland Council’s Share Point under the English and Literacy tab.
One slide which you may wish to look at, is the Literacy Road Map Signposts, which holds information around assessing, planning, learning and moderation. You will find that on slide three of the Road Map.
By now your school will have received a free copy of Mission Dyslexia to help teachers support pupils with dyslexia. These books were sent to all primary schools in Highland Council.
We hope that the books have been shared with relevant staff such as support for learning teachers.
The books were paid for by your local volunteer-led branch of Dyslexia Scotland.
We’d like to offer 2 free short sessions to explain a little bit more about the background to the book, how you can use it in your school and how others have used it. The informal sessions will take place on Zoom.
One of the book’s authors and Dyslexia Scotland Ambassador Paul McNeill will give a short overview of the resource and help you maximise its use in schools.
The philosophy of Curriculum for Excellence is that of a future-oriented education, aiming to help students develop into successful learners, confident individuals, responsible citizens and effective contributors (referred to as the “four capacities”).
Join this Book Discovery session where Scottish Book Trust staff will take you through some contemporary text recommendations on this theme; activity ideas to use in your setting; and highlight resources that will support you. There will also be the opportunity for discussion with other learning professionals about using texts to explore the four capacities.