Selling C of E Primary School

petham primary school
Village Acedemy


Within our English lessons, children are encouraged to develop a broad range of skills in speaking and listening, reading and writing. Children participate in a daily English lesson as well as frequent Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar (SPaG) lessons from Year 1 onwards.

Reading is a fundamental skill and we encourage parents to join in the excitement of their children learning to read. We don’t use a single reading scheme but rather match children to books that will best develop their skills and interest. Every class has its own book corner with a variety of books suited to a particular age group.

We also have a well stocked library in which we have a range of fiction and non-fiction books, which have been banded. We use Micro Librarian to issue books and children are taught library skills, enabling them to issue and return their own books.

Although the aim is for all children to be able to fluently read, an important stepping stone to this is the learning completed in Phonics sessions.  At Petham we follow the Letters and Sounds program. All children in Reception and Key Stage One take part in sessions, which introduce sounds like "s" (as in set), "ch" (as in catch) and "a_e" (as in lane).  Getting to know these sounds helps children to be able to decode the words they read, as well as make plausible attempts at spelling them in their own writing.  We do not follow a particular scheme, but use the Letters and Sounds document as a basis to our teaching.

Writing skills are a key priority within the school. We emphasise presentation and handwriting skills. Children are taught cursive script when they are ready, first using a pencil and progressing to fountain or handwriting pens. All classes undertake extended writing sessions (our weekly Big Write) with activities ranging from poetry, creative writing, persuasive letter writing and factual work. 

Speaking and listening skills are developed across the whole curriculum; classes regularly put on a role plays, discussions or productions to encourage confidence and self-expression.