Our role in the English department, along with teaching the ‘nuts and bolts’ of punctuation, grammar and spelling, is to help our children find a simple pleasure in the world of literature.
This in turn stimulates their own writing, giving them the confidence to experiment with new words and stylistic techniques. Through reading, pupils develop empathy. Indeed, classmates learn from each other, as well as the teacher, how to articulate their thoughts and feelings. Of course, developing good reading skills reaches far beyond the English Department. Fluency in reading is essential for children to be able to access an increasingly sophisticated curriculum: you need to understand what the complex mathematical task or scientific challenge is asking you before you can demonstrate your high levels of numeracy or scientific knowledge.
Across a range of subjects, reading is also a doorway into other worlds, times in history and cultures. Throughout the year there are various poetry, public speaking and writing competitions in which the children participate enthusiastically. Above all, it is hoped that the subject will enhance the pupils’ self-esteem and self-confidence.