Holy Trinity Catholic Primary School



At Holy Trinity, we want all our children to develop a passion and interest for all aspects of the English Curriculum. We want their aspirations to know no bounds and to understand that their skills in English will enable them to be successful in whatever they do. We know that English is essential for the educational and social progress of all our pupils. At Holy Trinity, we value reading and writing as key life skills and high priority is given to the teaching of this subject within our school. We are dedicated to enabling all of our pupils to become confident, lifelong readers and writers. Careful selection of texts throughout school enables our pupils to develop a rich and varied understanding of language, with opportunities to transfer this understanding to other areas of the curriculum and to prepare them for their future journey, in education and beyond.

It is our aim to encourage all our children to learn to love reading and to read regularly outside of school. We have recently installed our book vending machine kindly donated by Everton in the Community and sponsored by the Steven Morgan foundation. We also value our partnerships and work collaboratively to bring books to life. Our pupils have enjoyed productions and workshops through our work with The Liverpool Everyman and Playhouse Theatre and The Children’s Bookshow. Celebrations such as World Book Day and the Children’s Reading festival are used to invite authors into school and promote the pleasure and knowledge that can be gained from books.


English has a key place in the education of pupils and we are following the demands of the English National Curriculum. The National Curriculum has enabled us to evaluate our provision and allowed us to be both challenging and creative. Wordsmith is the main driver behind our English curriculum. This approach enables us to engage and motivate children in their literacy learning. It also enables children to deepen their understanding of texts, offers extensive opportunities for speaking and listening and provides a meaningful context for writing whilst following the English programs of study.


At Holy Trinity we believe that the best way to ensure that pupils do well in English is to ensure that they become life-long engaged readers. Children and staff at Holy Trinity are enthusiastic readers and we endeavour to foster a love and passion for reading in our children from the outset. We hold a variety of whole school events throughout the year to encourage and develop the passion for reading. We were delighted to be awarded the Liverpool Reading Quality Mark GOLD award for teaching reading across our school.

Reading is a key part of our curriculum and to support our commitment to this all teachers dedicate time daily and weekly to teaching this invaluable skill.

A number of strategies with regards to reading are employed across the school including: Phonics RWI, individual reading, reading for pleasure, DEAR and shared reading.

Books give us pleasure. They teach us about the world now and in the past. They stimulate our imagination and our emotions. We place a very high priority on reading for pleasure. Each class has a set of high quality vocabulary rich novels. Drop Everything and Read (DEAR) and Reading for Pleasure takes place in all classes every week.

Reading for Pleasure

The 2014 National Curriculum for English in England emphasises ‘reading for pleasure’ – a move which is very welcome and long overdue. Recent studies (for example, Save the Children, 2014) have shown that those children who choose to read, enjoy reading and read regularly reap the benefits in many areas, not least:

  • academically: language acquisition; vocabulary growth; reading proficiency; improved comprehension and understanding; ability to absorb and understand information in all subjects
  • socially: gaining an understanding of people, the world, life experiences (and thereby improving relationships and creating connections with the wider world); ability to empathise; sense of humour; ability to interpret situations; making links between content of books and personal life
  • areas of health: self-confidence and self-esteem; understanding emotions; develop emotional vocabulary.

Reading class novels to children:

We place a very high priority on reading to the children, accessing texts which they are unable to access themselves. Book discussion enables pupils to gain a deeper understanding of more challenging texts as well as developing their vocabulary. There can be few things as powerful as regularly reading to children. It has astonishing benefits for children: comfort and reassurance, confidence and security, relaxation, happiness and fun. Giving children time and full attention when reading to them builds self-esteem, vocabulary and feeds their imagination.


We aim for all pupils to leave us able to write clearly, accurately and coherently. Each half term, children study different genres of writing, considering the different audiences they may be writing for. Teachers skilfully immerse children in these different genres and support them in their planning of their writing.  A weekly ‘extended writing’ lesson provides the opportunity to write at length on a regular basis both linked to the topic or with topical tasks that link with other areas of the curriculum. Writing is not, however, solely a focus in literacy lessons, children also have planned opportunities for extended writing in other subjects such as RE, Topic and Science, where, using their skills and understanding of the different styles of writing, they can apply them in context.

Handwriting is rigorously taught throughout the school focusing on pre-cursive letters in EYFS and developing to cursive script.

Speaking and Listening

Through all lessons, not just English lessons, children regularly use and develop their speaking and listening skills in a variety of independent, paired and group activities. We place a huge emphasis on this particularly in the Foundation Stage, where children develop those skills at an accelerated rate.

Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling

Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling (GPS) is taught discreetly and also interwoven into English lessons taught in a meaningful context with opportunities to apply learning across the curriculum.


At Holy Trinity we believe that literacy holds the key to a successful future, therefore we aim to develop confidence in reading, writing and communication skills. Creating a love for reading and writing is at the heart of our literacy curriculum and we strive to teach lessons that are motivating, fun and inspiring for all pupils. The texts we explore are high quality, rich and exciting and draw on a variety of genres.

We strive to ensure that our pupil's attainment is in line with, or exceeds, their potential when we consider the varied starting points of all our pupils. We measure this using a range of assessment materials, whilst always considering the age-related expectations for each year group. Rigorous evaluation of these assessments allows for early intervention in an attempt to narrow the gap so that pupils will make at least good progress in Reading, Writing and oracy from their last point of statutory assessment or from their starting point in Nursery. We intend the impact of our English curriculum will ensure our pupils are academically prepared for life beyond primary school and throughout their educational journey.

‘Reading feeds pupils' imagination and opens up a treasure-house of wonder and joy for curious minds’.

National Curriculum 2014

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