At OLA, English is central to the whole curriculum, and the skills our pupils learn here will equip them for life. Children learn to communicate clearly with others and to understand and appreciate literature. We aim to produce children who are enthusiastic readers, keen and competent writers, children who can listen carefully to others and present their own views confidently and articulately. 

      Special events such as Book Week, author visits, workshops and competitions take place throughout the year to enthuse the children about English.  


      At Key Stage 1, teachers listen to each child read daily. Phonics teaching is enhanced by having a wide range of books for the children to choose from. At Key Stage 2 children’s reading continues to be carefully monitored and support is given with choosing texts which provide the right level of challenge, either from the classroom or from our well-stocked library.


      Writing is linked to real life contexts where possible and writing skills are used across the curriculum. Spelling and handwriting are taught discretely. We follow a progressive spelling scheme which encourages children to become independent learners who take responsibility for checking, correcting and learning spellings. Grammar is taught, where possible, through the use of engaging texts and as a means of enhancing the children’s writing.

      Speaking and listening

      Children are encouraged to participate in discussion, to work supportively with others in pairs or small groups, to ask questions and to put forward their opinions. Many Key Stage 2 children take the English Speaking Board exams, and achieve excellent results. 

      “Pupils across the school are articulate and willing contributors in lessons, often asking probing questions. They usually listen well to their peers, and write clearly and in a range of styles.” 

      ISI report, 2016