Curriculum Intent

A high-quality education in English will teach pupils to speak and write fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them.

Through reading in particular, pupils have a chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Literature, especially, plays a key role in such development.

Reading also enables pupils both to acquire knowledge and to build on what they already know.
The overarching aim for English in the national curriculum is to promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment.

The national curriculum for English aims to ensure that all pupils:

  • read easily, fluently and with good understanding
  • develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information
  • acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language
  • appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
  • write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences
  • use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas
  • are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate

Spoken language underpins the development of reading and writing. The quality and variety of language that pupils hear and speak are vital for developing their vocabulary and grammar and their understanding for reading and writing.

Teachers should therefore ensure the continual development of pupils’ confidence and competence in spoken language and listening skills. Pupils should develop a capacity to explain their understanding of books and other reading, and to prepare their ideas before they write.

They must be assisted in making their thinking clear to themselves as well as to others and teachers should ensure that pupils build secure foundations by using discussion to probe and remedy their misconceptions. Pupils should also be taught to understand and use the conventions for discussion and debate.

All pupils should be enabled to participate in and gain knowledge, skills and understanding associated with the artistic practice of drama. Pupils should be able to adopt, create and sustain a range of roles, responding appropriately to others in role. They should have opportunities to improvise, devise and script drama for one another and a range of audiences, as well as to rehearse, refine, share and respond thoughtfully to drama and theatre performances.

We want children at The Priory Catholic Voluntary Academy to:

  • listen and respond appropriately to adults and peers
  • ask relevant questions to extend their understanding and knowledge
  • use relevant strategies to build their vocabulary
  • articulate and justify answers, arguments and opinions
  • give well-structured descriptions, explanations and narratives for different purposes including for expressing feelings
  • maintain attention and participate in conversations, staying on topic and initiating and responding to comments use spoken language to develop understanding through speculating, hypothesising, imagining and exploring ideas
  • speak audibly and fluently in Standard English
  • participate in discussions, presentations, performances, role play, improvisations and debates
  • gain, maintain and monitor the interest of the listener
  • consider and evaluate different viewpoints building on the contributions of others
  • And select and use appropriate registers for effective communication.


How is spoken language implemented at The Priory Catholic Voluntary

Spoken language skills are taught at a level appropriate to the age of the pupil. The oral language skills that have been taught in preceding years is built upon with opportunities to revisit, practise and repeat learning which is key to deep understanding and having a mastery of skills.

Teachers look for links across subjects to help deliver the writing curriculum effectively in a way that will engage the children and stimulate interest.

Pupils are taught to develop their competence in spoken language and listening to enhance the effectiveness with which they are able to communicate across a range of contexts and to a range of audiences. At The Priory, we provide pupils with opportunities to work in groups of different sizes – pairs, small groups, larger groups, whole class, whole key stage, whole school and whole school community.

Constructive formative feedback is provided to pupils regarding their spoken language and listening skills, not only to improve their knowledge and skills but also to establish secure foundations for effective spoken language at primary school right through to secondary education and beyond.

We want the pupils at Priory to develop a wide vocabulary and be confident speakers. We encourage them to talk amongst their peers and to adults in school and to demonstrate excellent listening skills.

Opportunities for children to develop their competence in Spoken language:

  • Class discussions in all subject areas
  • Role plays in different subject areas
  • Class debates and Talk Partners
  • Presenting work to the class
  • Reading out loud
  • Circle time
  • Outdoor Learning
  • Termly Class Assemblies for Parents
  • Key stage Collective Worship and Class Collective worship
  • Christmas Nativity Productions for families
  • Easter Production
  • Christmas Carol Services
  • End of year productions
  • Visitors in class/school (DARE) and visits/trips to places
  • Special assemblies (Harvest)
  • Nurture time
  • The Celebration of Mass

We place a particular emphasis on:

  • increasing pupils’ vocabulary when describing their immediate world and feelings
  • developing a broader and richer vocabulary to discuss abstract concepts across a wide range of topics
  • enhance knowledge about language as a whole