Runnymede St Edward's Catholic Primary

Part of the Edmund Rice family of schools ‘Inspire, Challenge and Support through Faith’



“Reading is the breathing in; Writing is the breathing out.”

Pam Allyn




At Runnymede St. Edwards Catholic Primary School, the overarching aim for English is to promote the high standards of language and literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word. Through immersing our pupils in the wonders of quality texts, we hope to instil a love for reading, a passion for discovery and a confidence to explore their imagination. This, in turn, helps build a rich curriculum where intent and implementation lead to the impact and improved outcomes for children.

As part of the English curriculum, children develop their skills in Speaking and Listening, Reading and Writing, which also includes Spelling and Handwriting. English is taught explicitly through daily lessons and is built upon throughout the wider curriculum. In addition, we have 30-minute daily reading sessions which focus on teaching the key reading skills linked to the content domain areas.




Speaking and Listening

The Impact of Speaking and Listening give us the skills we need to communicate with the world around us. Children are given a range of opportunities to develop these skills, in a safe and stimulating environment. The wide range of speaking and listening activities, which are woven throughout our curriculum, help to develop ideas, vocabulary and confidence, as the more we talk, the more we pick up on different words that other people use. These include: exploratory play, story time, hot-seating, collaborative learning, presenting reasoned arguments, debating and performance poetry.


Drama is used across all subjects to explore and engage children in their learning. This gives children the opportunity to embed vocabulary in shared activities. Children are also encouraged to develop their oracy skills outside of the curriculum. This is promoted through: Collective Worship, School council and other pupil voice activities.



The ability to decode words, will be taught through the use of the synthetic phonics scheme ‘Read Write Inc.’ Children will be bench marked to assess which level of books they should be reading and to ensure that they progress appropriately.


Read Write Inc (RWI) is a phonics complete literacy programme which helps all children learn to read fluently and at speed so they can focus on developing their skills in comprehension, vocabulary and spelling. The programme is designed for children aged 4-7. We begin the programme in Reception and will continue teaching RWI to children beyond the age of 7 if they still need support in their reading. For more information please refer to our Phonics in Runnymede page.


“The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”

Dr. Seuss



At Runnymede St. Edwards Catholic Primary School, we work hard to make sure that children have a love of books and literature and we're very proud that so many of our children enjoy reading. Each class, from Reception to Year 6, will study a different class text each half-term and this is supported by the Literacy Counts - Read to Write and Steps to Read English programmes. They are used throughout our English lessons and, where possible, linked to other curriculum areas.


Reading is at the core of many curriculum areas. Throughout school, children are presented with many opportunities during the school day to read or listen to stories being read aloud. Reading is a high priority in our book-led English curriculum. Through teacher’s choice of high-quality texts, we intend to develop a love of reading and allow children to recognise the pleasure they can get from reading. With this we aim to provide children with the understanding that reading provides opportunities to discover new knowledge, revisit prior knowledge and understand more about what they learn.

We ensure we have a wide range of texts displayed around our school, to correlate with our wider curriculum. We work hard to raise the profile of reading, sharing the importance of reading with our parents, carers and wider community. Within our classrooms, we explore ambitious vocabulary across the wider curriculum to ensure we acquire an understanding of tricky language through the use of our knowledge organisers, vocabulary mats and working walls.

The school library and class libraries are important resources for children in all areas of the curriculum, which can be used to select books to read for pleasure, or in order to find out information. Classes use the library to teach library skills and to enjoy reading.

Home reading is very important at Runnymede St. Edwards Catholic Primary School. Children have access to a wide range of different books. In Reception and KS1 (infants), children’s home reading books are linked to the RWI phonics lessons in school. In KS2 (juniors), children’s home reading books are linked to their reading ability.

Children’s comprehension skills will be taught through high quality discussions with teachers and teaching assistants, individual and group reading times and whole class reading activities. We have a whole class reading approach and we have found that children have become motivated to read and discuss more challenging texts. This is supported through the Literacy Counts – Steps to Read English programme.


Steps to Read (Literacy Counts) is planning support for whole class Shared Reading through carefully crafted units of work. The units of work also help to provide curriculum knowledge for foundation subjects. They empower teachers to teach all aspects of word reading and comprehension through high-quality fiction, non-fiction and poetry texts.


Steps to Read provides a clear teaching sequence to reading sessions that explicitly teach reading skills and strategies in a cumulative way through evidence-based approaches. The comprehensive units have been constructed so that the entire statutory curriculum for reading is covered from EYFS to Y6. The primary aim of Steps to Read is to teach reading comprehensions skills and strategies explicitly.

Steps to Read:

  • Is sequenced, coherent and progressive
  • Uses language-rich texts for vocabulary teaching
  • Includes all elements of comprehension, taught sequentially across an academic year
  • Has a clear focus on the skills and strategies needed to be a proficient and confident reader
  • Uses engaging texts to promote a life-long love of reading



We provide children with a range of opportunities for writing in all areas of the curriculum for a range of purposes and audiences, from different types of fiction to non-fiction. Children take part in a writing lesson every day where they learn and develop age appropriate grammar and punctuation skills that can be applied to planning, writing and evaluating a final piece of writing. We believe it is important to evaluate, edit and re-draft at all stages of the writing process and teach children how to be independent in these self-checking skills. This is supported through the Literacy Counts – Read to Write English programme.


Read to Write (Literacy Counts) provides high-quality teaching of writing through high-quality literature. From Reception to Year 6, the detailed units of work centre on engaging, vocabulary-rich texts, with a wealth of writing opportunities within and across the curriculum. They also provide clear, sequential episodes of learning; contextualised spelling, grammar and punctuation; wider reading for the wider curriculum; curriculum enrichments for all year groups; model texts linked to writing outcomes and a wealth of supporting resources.


Read to Write empowers teachers to provide high-quality teaching of writing through high-quality literature. The detailed units of work centre on engaging, vocabulary-rich texts, with a wealth of writing opportunities within and across the curriculum and they also signpost wider curriculum enrichments.

The units provide:

  • Clear sequential Episodes of Learning
  • Model Texts linked to writing outcomes within the unit
  • Vocabulary learning and contextualised spelling, grammar and punctuation
  • Wider reading for the wider curriculum
  • Curriculum Enrichments
  • A wealth of resources
  • Explicit links to the national curriculum
  • Includes poetry, non-fiction and fiction that enhances knowledge learning across the curriculum


Read to Write is evidence-based teaching of writing. The units have been carefully mapped out so the entire statutory curriculum for English is covered for each year group, supporting our school to build a rich curriculum.

The documents below give you more information about the texts and genres that your child will be covering. Please note that this document should be read in conjunction with our curriculum overviews as the order of the units may change throughout the year. In addition to this, we are looking forward to adding to our Read to Write Units.



At Runnymede St Edwards Catholic Primary School, we are very proud of our pupil’s handwriting and take particular care in our cursive handwriting style. We use Letter-join’s on-line handwriting resource as the basis of our handwriting policy as it covers all the requirements of the National Curriculum.

Handwriting is a basic skill that influences the quality of work throughout the curriculum. By the end of Key Stage 2 all pupils should have the ability to produce fluent, legible and, eventually, speedy joined-up handwriting, and to understand the different forms of handwriting used for different purposes.

Our intention is to make handwriting an automatic process that does not interfere with creative and mental thinking.




We regularly use a number of ways to measure and assess the impact of our intent and implementation. This helps to refine and adapt our planning further which, in turn, improves the quality of teaching and learning. We consistently review objectives from previous learning to ensure a clear progression in knowledge, skills and understanding. Leaders conduct book monitoring, learning walks and pupil voice to establish the impact, as well as the use of Termly NFER summative tests, End of KS National Curriculum Assessments and ongoing formative assessments.