The West Bridgford School

Literacy

Literacy is embedded throughout school in the curriculum; in tutor time; in and around school and after school clubs. One morning a week in tutor time pupils in Year 7 and 8 have a literacy morning to promote literacy skills: activities include spelling, punctuation, grammar, countdown, scrabble, discussions and creative writing. Year 9 expand their vocabulary in tutor time through weekly participation in Wordle based activities.

We know how important reading is: all students bring a book as part of their basic equipment and all tutor groups in main school participate in weekly independent reading mornings. This is followed by time to discuss and recommend books to peers. In September, we will also be launching the West Bridgford School’s ‘read aloud’ cannon.

A word of the week is selected to help with vocabulary; this is announced during assemblies and is also on display on screens across school, the Learning Centre and on Brightspace. There is a weekly tutor activity to help promote the word of the week. The schools’ annual debate week further helps to develop oracy and vocabulary skills through engagement in tutor time with a topical issue: these discussions culminate in a debating assembly and a whole school vote.

Throughout school, there are various displays promoting reading and books; additionally, students can see what staff are reading as teachers have posters that are updated with current reading books. Year 7 have access to the E Library and are encouraged to borrow and recommend books. Some students are selected to be paired up with reading mentors from Post 16 and have the challenge of becoming reading centurions with the support of their mentor. 2022 has also seen the launch of our inaugural WBS Lit Fest, which promoted an enjoyment of literature, in all its forms, across school.

Within lessons, teachers highlight important vocabulary and promote language rich classroom. They understand that literacy is important for all subjects promote reading where relevant.

If students are stuck on selecting books to read, they are invited to use the BookTrust website to help them discover a new and exciting book to read or check the 50 books to read before you turn 16 poster and 100 books to read before you leave the West Bridgford School poster. Additionally, all departments have recommended subject and Key Stage specific books that may be of interest – this list can be found on Brightspace.

Each year, literacy screenings are conducted for Year 6 and Year 10 in order to ascertain reading abilities. In addition to this information being used by teachers to ensure they give the best support across school, this also helps to determine if students need any additional tailored literacy support beyond the classroom, whilst maintaining our aim to ensure there is a broad and balanced curriculum for all students.