Language and communication


At Red Hall we recognise that language is an essential building block in child development and we aim to equip each and every pupil with the English skills they need to enjoy lifelong learning. This allows them to enjoy reading for knowledge, as well as pleasure and enjoyment, and to write with a sense of purpose and audience. We also encourage our children to express themselves effectively orally and to listen and learn from each other.

Early reading/ Phonics

Reading is a key priority at Red Hall and a child’s journey begins right from their starting point in Nursery. At Red Hall, we introduced the Monster Phonics programme in February 2022. Monster Phonics is a DfE validated programme which uses a colour coded system linked to monsters. The programme delivers the phonics and spelling curriculum in EYFS and KS1.

Each coloured grapheme is paired with a monster character. This enables the children to quickly identify the sound (phoneme) that it represents.

All children in Early Years and Key Stage 1 are taught a daily phonic lesson. In some cases, this is also continued into Key Stage 2. Each phonic session follows the same structure:-

· Revisit

· Teach

· Practise

· Apply

· Assess

All Year 1 children take the phonic screening check in June. This is a statutory assessment.

Please take a look at the Monster Phonic website, where there are some free resources for you to use with your child at home.

Guided reading

Reading is taught in line with the National Curriculum expectations for word reading and comprehension. As well as a school library in KS1, each class in school has a book corner with a wide range of books by popular children’s authors. We use a reading spine influenced by Pie Corbett to ensure that texts are of a high calibre and engaging as well as a range of books which promote diversity and inclusion.

Guided reading takes place on a regular basis and centred around the VIPERS approach (Vocabulary, Infe, Predict, Explain Retrieve, Summarise or Sequence). At Red Hall, we have a flexible approach to our Guided reading. For the children, these sessions can include a mixture of a whole class approach, teacher-led group work, follow up activities linked to the current group read, opportunities for the application of phonics, independent reading and even some time to simply immerse themselves in books. We ensure that we frequently assess children to check that books continue to match their progress and attainment.


At Red Hall, our English curriculum is based on the fundamental principles of Talk for Writing. Through daily English lessons, children learn the essentials of the English language such as phonics, spelling, grammar, punctuation and sentence construction; together with a clear progression of skills to help shape and organise texts. We aim to make learning fun and relevant by linking activities and experiences to other areas of the curriculum such as history, geography or science.

At Red Hall, children are taught to listen well, speak clearly, read enthusiastically and write effectively for a wide range of purposes and audiences. Children are supported and encouraged as they learn to express themselves creatively and imaginatively on their way to becoming enthusiastic and independent learners.

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