28.2.24 Lesley Lyon, Chair of Governors

I joined Mrs Buttress this morning to look at the work in English. As you will know from the school development plan, one of our priorities for the year is to improve writing across the school so we went to observe classes in Years 6 and 2; we talked to two groups of pupils from Key Stage 1 and 2 and we looked at the written work of pupils in all year groups.

We saw a wonderful lesson in Year 6 about the exploitation of Earnest Shackleton in the Antarctic. However, interwoven with this the pupils were learning to use the subjunctive form to enhance their writing. Their grasp of this extremely complex form in grammar was impressive as they showed their knowledge and recall. They went on to start their own piece of writing giving advice for Shackleton as he was about to set out.

The Year 2 lessons were enormous fun with the children listening to the hilarious poem The Slithermonchowchuck and then writing a poem about their own monsters. However, beneath that they were learning to use adverbials to make their writing more interesting. They worked with knowledge and confidence.

Talking to the pupils across all year groups about their writing was delightful. They told us that they loved writing, they got ideas from their reading and that they were proud of their efforts. They read their work aloud to us and they were able to see the progress they had made since the start of the year. They said that their handwriting was really important to them.

When we looked at the pupils’ writing books, they bore out what the children had told us. Sometimes they needed to respond to the teachers’ marking a little more frequently but the books were well kept, neat and a delight to read.

Thank you to Mrs Buttress, Miss Guinard, Miss Watts and Miss Whysall and the pupils for welcoming me into their classrooms.

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