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Acquiring literacy is an empowering process, enabling millions to enjoy access to knowledge and information which broadens horizons, increases opportunities and creates alternatives for building a better life.

Kofi Annan

The development of an effective literacy skill set (that is, speaking, listening, reading and writing) is fundamental to the achievement of a rich and fulfilling life. We use these skills every day in order to communicate with, and make sense of, the world around us. As such, the better we are at these skills the more successful we can expect to be in life. At Ryhope Infant School Academy we recognise that at the heart of improving literacy skills is the opportunity to practice them.

Improving literacy and learning can have an impact on students’ self-esteem, motivation, behaviour and attainment. It allows them to learn independently and is empowering.  We want to Nurture a love of literacy as part of pupils’ life-long learning journey by developing all pupils ability to speak, listen, read and write for a wide range of purposes, including using language to learn, communicate, think, explore and organise. Helping our pupils to express themselves clearly, through development of vocabulary, both orally and in writing, enhances and enriches teaching and learning in all subjects and prepares the student for life after school.

We believe that reading, and particularly reading for pleasure, has a direct impact on cognitive and social communicative development.

Speaking and Listening


Our overall aim is for our children to become efficient language users who are able to communicate effectively both in formal and informal situations, both inside and outside of the classroom. This will be achieved by devoting time, energy and resources to the development of oral communication.

Speaking, listening, group discussion, interaction and drama permeate the whole curriculum. Interactive teaching strategies are used to engage all pupils in order to raise reading and writing standards. Children are encouraged to develop effective communication skills in readiness for later life. We aim for children to be able to speak clearly, fluently and coherently, to be able to listen attentively with understanding, pleasure and empathy, and contribute to group discussions effectively.



The ability to use words to express your thoughts is crucial and will enable children to communicate with the world in a more meaningful manner. Writing makes a significant contribution to the development of children as thinkers and learners. At Ryhope Infant School Academy, we treat our pupils as writers, from the earliest stage, by providing experiences where the child can acquire confidence and a positive attitude towards writing. We help children to use texts to gain more knowledge about improving their own writing and to allow practice of extended writing in a variety of purposeful contexts. Developing a positive attitude towards the writing process including planning and redrafting is essential. Through the teaching of writing we encourage children’s ability to organise and present imaginative, factual writing and poetry in different ways. We teach strategies for spelling to enable children to become confident and competent spellers. We believe that Writing is a complex skill that will not develop without teaching and practice and so we endeavour to meet our aims by ensuring that pupils are provided with experiences that:
• Help children to use texts to gain more knowledge about improving their own writing.
• Allow practice of extended writing in a variety of purposeful contexts.
• Develop positive attitudes to the writing process including planning and redrafting.
• Support improvement and high expectation of core skills i.e. Spelling, Grammar and Punctuation.
• Provide feedback to pupils which will enable them to improve their writing skills.
• Maintain and develop a high writing achievement ethos at all stages in the School.


For information about reading please see the reading and phonics section of the website


English Documentation

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