At Tidemill Academy, we recognise the fundamental principle that writing is key to improving learning and raising standards; it enables pupils to gain access to all subjects across the curriculum. In addition, writing allows the children to express themselves creatively whilst developing key skills for organising and communicating ideas. All the skills of language are essential to participating fully as a member of society, and we believe that literate pupils will ultimately emerge as confident and articulate communicators.
During their time at Tidemill Academy, children are given the opportunity to write across a wide variety of genres. While we help them to develop a vivid, creative imagination, we also provide a range of stimulus material including children’s literature, poetry, film and art. In addition to this, opportunities for cross-curricular writing are regularly made, so children can confidently adapt and apply their writing skills to other subjects. Marking is constructive, with plenty of encouragement and advice, which the children regularly respond to. Furthermore, we provide specific learning objectives to help pupils make clear and understandable progress towards their expected standard. Children’s writing is regularly celebrated, with a variety of displays across the school and opportunities for the publishing of work.
Teachers plan for writing on a weekly basis following the guidelines of the National Curriculum and Tidemill Academy writing guidelines, which form part of our current English policy; this ensures progression of skills across and within each key stage. Our daily planning includes the units and genres to be taught with clear learning objectives and success criteria, differentiated activities and opportunities for assessment. Grammar, spelling and punctuation are emphasised as an important foundation of all writing. Pupils are taught to use grammar correctly, to punctuate properly and to develop accurate spelling. All children have weekly spelling lists as part of their homework. We also encourage neat handwriting and help the children to achieve a legible script as a matter of course.