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At All Saints School we use a reading scheme called ‘Big Cat’ that is provided by Collins.  Every child from Reception (where appropriate) to Year 6 will have a colour band levelled book (please see attached) matching their reading ability.  Children are placed onto a reading colour based on assessments that are carried out every 6 weeks. Children may move reading bands before the 6 weeks at the discretion of the class teacher.  In some cases children will become ‘Free Readers’ which means they have a reading level above that of primary school. These children then read books from the recommended 100 book challenge for KS2. For more information on the 100 book challenge please see the document attached.

Tile Big Cat

Reading is taught in two main ways at All Saints school.  During English lessons children will become familiar with a text / story that will be used for their writing.  During this time children will take part in a range of tasks that develop their understanding of this text. They will be asked questions linked with: Vocabulary, Inference, Prediction, Explain, Retrieve and sequence/summarise (VIPERS).  After lunch each class from Year 1 - 6 teaches a reading skills session 4 times a week. This session is normally differentiated in 3 ways based on a child's reading ability.

How we promote a love of reading at All Saints

  • Reading Mufti Rewards - when children read 5x a week for 5 weeks they gain a mufti ticket
  • Visits to and from the Local Library (Wellingborough Library)
  • Class Book Corners that reflect the current topic and recommended authors
  • Daily story time sessions
  • Weekly Class award for the class who has had the most readers of the week
  • Weekly timetabled school library sessions
  • Set reading challenges such as the 100 book challenge
  • Lunch Time club run by the ‘Book Squad’ for children who do not get the chance to read as frequently at home
  • Children have a ‘Reading for Pleasure book’ each week




Talk for writing

  • Evidence of writing is built up over time with a mix of adult observation, recorded work and adult knowledge of the child.  This can be adult led or independent from the EYFS provision.  The evidence may be written or come from audibly retelling a story.
  • Writing to be accompanied by a highlighted standard sheet in line with the ELGS
  • Photo of the writing work to be included on Tapestry / in books if completed in the provision rather than group work

Big Write Expectations per half term (adult led activity with highlighted sheet)

By Christmas

By February Half Term 

By Easter 

By May 

2 examples

2 more examples

2 more examples

2 more examples

Big Writes

Writing at All Saints is based around a ‘Big Write’ schedule that follows the teaching approach of Talk for Writing.  Children spend a range of time preparing for a big write.  During the weeks prior to a big write the children learn all of the skills needed to be successful in the big write.  Big Writes are frequently based around a key text or video that stimulates the children’s imagination.  During writing lessons children will learn spellings, grammar, handwriting and sentence structure in line with the schools progression framework.

Big Write

Imitation (Week 1)

Innovation (Week 2)

Independent Application (Week 3)

The Imitation Stage The teacher establishes a creative context for each ‘Talk for Writing’ unit with a ‘hook’ to draw the children in. 

Teachers then introduce children to an exemplar text, supported visually by a text map. Actions are created to help the children recall the story or non-fiction piece and reinforce the specific language patterns.

 In this way, children hear the text, say it for themselves and enjoy it before actually seeing it written down. Children interact with the text through drama activities and internalise the language patterns through sentence and word games based on the text. 

Once they have internalised the language of the text, they are introduced to the written text and encouraged to identify the key writing ingredients and ‘magpie’ key words and phrases. 

Children will develop their understanding of the structure of the text with the use of the boxing-up technique and by analysing the key features

Once the children have internalised the text, they are then ready to start innovating on the pattern of the text. Using an adaptation of the text, children orally rehearse what they want to say then create their own version.

During innovation, spelling, sentence games and drama activities continue to be incorporated so that children have a wealth of oral and written practice in the language features required to write. The key activity in this stage is shared writing – which helps the children to create their own version by ‘doing one together’ first.

 This begins with the children boxing-up their innovated version of the exemplar text. Each stage of the writing process is modelled by the teacher. 

Throughout this process key words and phrases and shared writing are displayed so when children begin to write they have models and examples to support them. Children are encouraged to swap their work with a response partner to discuss their successes

In this stage, children move towards becoming independent writers. 

They write the same text type but choose the content. This stage still requires a ‘hook’, games to help children to internalise the language patterns and understand the text, boxing up and shared writing (driven by teacher assessment). 

Teachers guide children through the whole process which ends with rereading and polishing.


  • Weeks 1 and 2 - Main teaching focused around a key text/video that will enable the children to produce a hot task big write at the end of the third week.
  • Week 3 - a focus on editing and improving work from over the course of the week.  For children with shorter big writes the English lessons will be editing previous work and then teaching grammar more explicitly. Children can peer-mark over this time and have spellings corrected by peers or use a dictionary.  Children will edit over the original big writes to show progress in a different colour (Y4,5,6)
  • Lessons should be around 45 minutes each day
  • The theme of writing should match a writing type from the Year Groups Moderation books. E.g. short narrative autumn term Year 4
  • Big Writes should be on plain paper and stuck into books (Y3 to be on plain paper when deemed appropriate by the teacher) Some children may have lined paper due to a specific need.
  • Grammar and punctuation are taught within the given context of each ‘Talk for Writing’ unit. Teachers plan a range of grammar and punctuation games and activities focusing on children’s next steps for learning and based on the exemplar text or topic.

Stages of a writing Lesson

Feedback - this may be a photo an analysis of work from the previous day, group feedback, peer marking that has been modelled.

Handwriting Target / Practice - each week children will have a handwriting target for the class and an individual area as they become older.  This will be shared with the children at multiple points through the day.  Children will be given a stamp when they achieve the class / individual target.

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Spelling Activity - a spelling element to lessons using the resources provided by spelling shed and your own

Grammar Game - using the talk for writing ideas and resources a daily grammar / vocabulary game will be used

I do, We do, You do - 3 clear stages of a writing lesson from EYFS to Year 6

Plenary - bringing the learning to an end. Seeing if the learning objective has been met, celebrating successes from the lesson.


 Kinetic Letters1

Handwriting at All Saints is taught using the Kinetic Letters handwriting scheme.  This approach starts in nursery and runs all the way to year 6. The school has invested heavily in the scheme with all classrooms having specially trained staff.  The school also has a wide range of resources linked with Kinetic Letters such as, story books, whiteboards and pupil target books.


Kinetic Letters


How do we ensure high quality Phonics?

All Saints uses the Sounds Write phonics scheme that is a recommended DFE Phonic scheme.  At All Saints, high quality phonics is valued by all members of the leadership team who have been on Sounds Write training. The leadership team consists of the EYFS Lead as well as the English Subject Leader.  

Image result for sounds write

Every member of staff that delivers phonics has been on a 4 day training programme that is delivered with Sounds Write to ensure that they are fully aware of how to deliver the programme. If a new member of staff joins in the early reading phase they are given Sounds Write training.  Many other members of the school staff have also been on the Sounds Write programme to ensure an understanding of how children begin to read at All Saints.

Phonics is taught every day in Nursery, Reception and Year 1.  These lessons follow a clear teaching sequence so that all members of staff are aware of the expectations for children in their stage of learning. Sessions are 20 minutes in length and phonics activities are placed in the classroom at the appropriate unit level.

Monitoring of phonics teaching is carried out in line with the schools Monitoring and Evaluation schedule.  This monitoring is carried out by the English Subject Leader and the EYFS Lead. 

All Saints invests heavily in staff training for Phonics to ensure consistency across the school.  The school has also invested in matching Sounds Write books to ensure that all children have a phonics book that matches their level of learning.