The development of literacy is central to the school curriculum. Literacy involves speaking and listening, reading and viewing, word study, and writing across all of our lessons, every day. The skills for literacy build in complexity over the years, nurturing students as learners and communicators who speak with confidence and poise and read and write with enjoyment and purpose.
The Literacy Program caters for all students with learning tasks at each child’s point of need. Teachers at Newham Primary school use The Gradual Release of Responsibility Model where students are supported with the necessary teaching and learning scaffolds for them to achieve success.
Newham Primary School takes pride in the innovative and evidence-based approach to literacy undertaken as our whole school approach.
Newham Primary School’s literacy approach is based on the use of synthetic phonics and in particular the PLD (Promoting Literacy Development) program. The PLD program provides the first steps in reading, spelling and writing. Following is a summary of our approach.
First implemented at Newham Primary School in 2021 the writing revolution has provided the necessary clarity for our students in the art of writing and is demonstrating early positive results in their writing prowess.
The Writing Revolution provides teachers with an evidence-based and proven instructional methodology, the Hochman Method Ⓡ The methodology rests on explicit, carefully sequenced instruction, building from sentences to compositions. The Hochman Method is not a separate writing curriculum but rather an approach designed to be adapted to and embedded in the content being taught in any subject area and at any grade level.
The 6 principles of the Hochman method 1. Students need explicit instruction in writing, beginning in the early primary school years.
2. Sentences are the building blocks of all writing. 3. When embedded in the content of the curriculum, writing instruction is a powerful teaching tool. 4. The content of the curriculum drives the rigor of the writing activities. 5. Grammar is best taught in the context of student writing.
6. The two most important phases of the writing process are planning and revising.
Teachers will model good reading behaviours and skills, share reading with students, provide time for independent reading, and guide students as individuals or small groups through particular goals and skills. Students learn from an early age how they can use and choose reading strategies for different genres (informational, instructional, persuasive, narrative, poetry, etc.) and how to respond to their reading through peer conversations, in guided groups and through written formats.
Students are assessed regularly using the Fountas & Pinnell Framework throughout the year, and teachers work with the students on individual goals that will support the reading of more complicated materials.
Phonics & Word Study
Newham PS offers a comprehensive synthetic Phonics Program in the early years (F-2) grounded in the Letters & Sounds Program. Students are supported to make the links between the letters of the alphabet to the common sounds they make, individually and blended. In support of this is a whole school approach to word study that directly teaches children Phonological Awareness, Regular Spelling Patterns, Morphology, Word Origins and the purposeful building of a wide Vocabulary to use when speaking, writing and reading.
Oral language lays the foundation for the reading and writing skills children will develop at Newham PS. They use oral language in all aspects of their education – in the classroom as they connect with peers and teachers, to explore and explain their thinking, to discuss their feelings and emotions, and in finding new ways to communicate ideas. We firmly subscribe to the evidence that having a solid foundation in oral language helps children to become successful readers and strong communicators as well as build their confidence and overall sense of well being.