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Our aspiration for every learner

Our aim is to secure outstanding teaching, learning and achievement for all pupils across Guru Nanak Sikh Academy through high quality, impactful teaching. Reading and writing is at the core of our curriculum and is embedded across all subject areas within our school. Our English curriculum develops pupils’ love of reading and writing by allowing them to build upon skills and knowledge that will enable them to communicate effectively and creatively through spoken and written language while facilitating them with the skills to become successful individuals. 

Literacy is a fundamental life skill and proficiency in English enables pupils to communicate effectively at home, school and in the wider world. We want our pupils to develop a secure knowledge-base in Literacy, which follows a clear pathway of progression as they advance through the primary curriculum.The skills of listening, speaking, reading and writing facilitate the pupils to effectively organize and express their own thoughts in an articulate manner, in a range of real-life situations. These skills are interlinked with one another while still being valued as separate entities, and are embedded exceptionally well across our curriculum. 

Through the English curriculum, we help children develop the attributes needed to enable them to communicate effectively and creatively through spoken and written language; facilitating them with the skills to become lifelong learners. 


Speaking and Listening

National Curriculum Objectives:
  • to speak clearly, fluently and confidently to a range of audiences
  • to listen to, understand and respond to other people
  • to join in group discussions
  • to participate in a range of drama and role-play activities

The National Curriculum for English reflects the importance of spoken language in pupils’ development which underpins the development of reading and writing across the whole curriculum. The quality and variety of language that pupils hear and speak are vital for developing their vocabulary and grammar and their understanding for reading and writing. 

At Guru Nanak Sikh Academy, pupils are taught to develop their competence in spoken language and listening to enhance the effectiveness of their communication across a range of contexts and to a range of audiences. They have opportunities to work in groups of different sizes – in pairs, small groups, large groups and as a whole class. Pupils understand how to take turns and when and how to participate constructively in conversations and debates.


National Curriculum Objectives:
  • to develop writing skills through planning, composing and editing
  • to use punctuation and grammar correctly
  • to create sentences and texts
  • to use a range of spelling strategies
  • to understand text structure and organisation
  • to have an awareness of audience and purpose thus adapt writing appropriately
  • to write legibly and fluently
  • to understand and use Standard English

At Guru Nanak Sikh Academy, we adopt a text-based approach to writing following the Power of Reading scheme, incorporating lessons that are interactive, collaborative and varied. Our pupils get a chance to express themselves not only through their writing, but also through fun-filled activities such as drama and role play. It is imperative that we explicitly teach the grammar skills needed to ensure that children meet their end of year objectives whilst exploring a range of genres and text types. We recognise the importance of nurturing a culture where pupils take pride in their writing, can write clearly and accurately and adapt their language and style for a range of contexts and audiences. A secure basis in literacy skills is crucial to a high quality education and we equip our pupils with the tools they need to fulfil their potential.


National Curriculum Objectives:

Pupils should be able to:

  • sit correctly at a table, holding a pencil comfortably and correctly
  • begin to form lower-case letters in the correct direction, starting and finishing in the right place
  • form capital letters
  • form digits 0-9
  • understand which letters belong to which handwriting ‘families’ (ie letters that are formed in similar ways) and to practise these

It is our aim that every child develops a fluent, legible style of handwriting. Capital and lowercase letters should be used appropriately and the letter size should be consistent. We teach Kingston Cursive Handwriting which provides a clear, practical framework for implementing and developing a whole-school handwriting policy.

Handwriting Policy:

Please click the link to see the school’s handwriting policy:

Kingston Handwriting Policy - March 2021

Guidance for parents

Pen licence




National Curriculum Objectives:
  • to read with fluency, accuracy and understanding, using a range of strategies
  • To develop a love for reading and read for pleasure
  • to read to obtain information and further their own understanding in an area/topic
  • to understand, interpret and appreciate literary and non-fiction texts

Reading is a high priority in our book-led English curriculum and through teachers' choice of high quality texts, we develop a love of reading and allow pupils to recognise the pleasure they can get from it. In weekly Guided Reading lessons, we aim to provide pupils with the skills to decode and comprehend what they read through effective questioning linking to the National Curriculum objectives. Children begin to understand that reading provides opportunities to: discover new knowledge, further their learning,  ignite their imagination, and understand more about the world around them.  

It is essential that children read daily at home choosing books they can read independently, from a variety of genres, including fiction and non-fiction. 
For age appropriate recommendations please click the following links:

Reading Objectives:

Please click below to see the Reading Objectives for each year group. 

Year 1 Reading Assessment

Year 2 Reading Assessment

Years 3 and 4 Reading Assessment

Years 5 and 6 Reading Assessment


Phonics (EYFS and KS1)

How we support our pupils to acquire this learning:

At Guru Nanak Sikh Academy, our Phonics and Early Reading is the starting point to build competent and lifelong readers. We teach reading through Little Wandle Letters and Sounds Revised; which is a systematic and synthetic phonics programme.

For further information on the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds programme, please click here.


We are very lucky to have a well-resourced and efficiently run library at Guru Nanak Sikh Academy. The borrowing section of our library is electronically logged and pupils can borrow a book of their choice every week. We also have an extensive reference section of the library which children can use for independent research during or outside lesson time. Staff members are able to recommend texts or help pupils select reading materials, fostering a love of books and promoting a positive reading culture. Author displays and recommended book displays further engage the pupils making them more excited about reading and encourage them to read books from a wide range of genres and by a variety of authors.

Online Literacy Resources & Activities

The links below are child-friendly websites that have been created by other schools and organisations. They provide excellent, free resources online which you can use to support your child(ren) at home and encourage them to become independent learners. 

For an extended breakdown of the Literacy programme set by the Department of Education, please click the link below: