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St Robert Southwell

Catholic Primary School

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The journey to becoming a writer, starts in Reception. Writing is carefully planned to encourage children to write in a wide variety of genres in their English lessons and within the wider curriculum. Throughout the year pupils will learn, practice and develop writing skills such as writing a diary, writing a recount, story writing, letter writing, and writing instructions. The skills we teach within writing are; handwriting, spelling, phonics, grammar, punctuation, style, content and appropriate and adventurous use of vocabulary.

Learners need to be given the opportunity to reflect on their writing, they are taught editing skills so that they can understand how to improve their own work. In KS2, children have a writing checklist in their English books so that they can see what they have achieved and what targets they are working towards.




Reception - Children practice handwriting with each new sound taught, Monday-Thursday, followed by a practice of all four sounds on a Friday. They will also practice in weekly Busy Bee activities and for pre-lunch and pre-home time carpet activities.


Y1 - Children have two taught lessons a week. 


Y2 - Children have two taught lessons a week on letter formation plus practice within a morning starter to focus on the week’s spellings.


Y3 - Children have one lesson a week to explicitly teach letters/join of letters plus independent practice of letters.


Y4 - During the Autumn Term, the children follow an 8-week scheme to consolidate letter formation taught in Y3, followed by practice, small groups & intervention work.


Y5/Y6 - Children work towards getting their Pen Licence for clear letter formation and neat writing.




Reception and Y1 - Using their learnt sounds to sound out words and learning to spell the tricky words.


Y2 - Children practice their phonic knowledge within their spellings; the words are chosen based on the graphemes taught each week. Families are given a list of the spellings for each week and on a Friday, the children have a mini test to check if they have learnt and retained the new sounds. To start each English lesson, the children explore words from the Y2 common exception words. 


KS2 - Children have a spelling test on a Monday, practice their spelling words through the week and then are retested on a Friday. Spellings are sent home in addition to other class homework (spellings can be found on each classes homework page).




Reception and Y1 - Grammar is taught within the Song of Sounds phonic scheme and embedded into English lessons. Grammar in reception includes full-stops and capital letters.


Y2 - Grammar is embedded into English lessons and as a morning starter.


KS2 - Grammar is taught explicitly once a week and embedded within English lessons, as appropriate.



  • Through continual writing and spelling assessments, children's next steps are created and planned for. Interventions are put into place for children who may require additional support. 
  • By the end of upper key stage 2, children at St Robert Southwell have explored a range of genres of writing.
  • Most importantly, we hope all children develop and love of writing in their unique writing styles. 
  • Children are using their English skills cross-curricular showing consolidation of their skills as well as understanding of grammar and punctuation.