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  • English Home Learning

    Ten Top Tips for Reading to Your Child

    1. Make reading to your child an enjoyable experience. Introduce each new book with excitement.
    2. Try to find a quiet time so that both of you can see and hear the book read out loud.
    3. Show curiosity in what you are going to read. You might say, “Oh no! I think Arthur is going to get even angrier now.”
    4. The first time you engage with the book, read the whole story or chapter without stopping too much. If you think your child might not understand something, model an explanation: “I think what’s happening here is that…”
    5. Chat about the story: “I wonder why he did that. Oh no, I hope she’s not going to… I wouldn’t have done that, would you?”
    6. Avoid asking too many questions that simply test what your child remembers.
    7. Link stories and non-fiction texts to your own experiences, e.g. “This reminds me of…”
    8. Read your favourite stories over and over again. Invite your child to join in with the parts they know, or suggest a different ending.
    9. Read with enthusiasm. Do not be embarrassed to try out different voices for the characters. Your child will enjoy the entertainment and start to understand characterisation.
    10. The Year 6 children love being read to. Don’t forget to read to them, too.

     

    Common Concerns

    My child is reluctant to read
    If your child seems to be reluctant to read, visit a local library and ask for booklists and recommendations. Some libraries are proud to offer services that enable you to submit your child’s likes and dislikes. They will then provide you with some suggestions or booklists.  The Norfolk Children’s Book Centre does this. Visit them at www.ncbc.co.uk. Also, take advantage of second-hand book websites. Very often, the ‘used’ books appear to be almost as good as new, and are much cheaper! Have a look at https://www.abebooks.co.uk/ and similar websites. Just type in the title and/or author, e.g. The Sheep-Pig by Dick King Smith. With this website, the price for packing and postage is clear. Of course, please choose a book shop or website of your own preference.

     

    My child only reads books about dragons
    Perhaps you are concerned that your child only seems to read a particular genre or text type. Be positive and pleased that you have noticed what arouses your child’s curiosity. It is good that your child is showing signs of deep involvement. Ensure that your child has the time and freedom to become involved in activities that interest them. This shows that your child can maintain focus for a sustained period of time. Introduce a different genre, text type or topic every now and then. Don’t worry. At school, they will have access to many different texts across the curriculum.

     

    I am not sure if the book is too easy or too challenging
    Sometimes parents are worried about giving their child a book that is perceived to be too easy. Reading progress for some children may be slower as they learn to decode. Children need to read a text a couple of times to decode and understand it. When a text has become more familiar and seemingly ‘easy’, this is an opportunity to encourage the child to critically engage with it by discussing the plot, focusing on how characters have been portrayed, or identifying how and why information has been presented in a certain way. By Year 6, they may need to interact with a text several times to retrieve information, make inferences and make justified comments about the author’s use of language. 

    On other occasions, parents are concerned that a book is too challenging. However, sections of the programme of study for English advocate children listening to and discussing a wide range of poems, stories and non-fiction at a level beyond that at which they can read independently. Having a challenging book that is read to them by an adult is an opportunity for your child to hear vocabulary and ideas that they would not be able to access themselves. So, read to your child!

     

    Phonics Flashcards
    These packs are available to purchase from school; please see your child’s teacher for further details.

    Set 1 cards for Nursery, Reception, Year 1
    £5 per pack

    Set 2 & 3 cards for Reception (Summer term), Year 1, Year 2
    £5 per pack

    My Reading and Writing Kit 1 for Reception
    Includes: Set 1 Phonics Flashcards, Handwriting Workbook, Wipe-clean Sheet and Pen, Bedroom Frieze and Parent Handbook!
    £10 per pack

    My Reading and Writing Kit 3 for Reception (Summer term) & beginning Year 1
    Includes: Set 2 Phonics Flashcards, Handwriting Workbook, Six storybooks and Parent Handbook! 
    £10 per pack

     

    Click here to view Information for Parents: What is Read Write Inc. Phonics?

    Click here to view Information for Parents: How to say the sounds

    Click here to view Information for Parents: Sound-blending

    Click here to view Information for Parents: The Phonics Screening Check

     

    Helping with English Grammar

    Below, are the grammar topics that your child will be studying each half term in class. The Trust have also produced grammar homework sheets for children to complete every week which will be kept in a plastic wallet. There is no need to purchase grammar guides, as the homework sheets give a full explanation of the grammar being studied and examples.

    KS2 GRAMMAR YEAR 3 YEAR 4 YEAR 5 YEAR 6

    Autumn 1

    1. Sentences
    2. The Alphabet
    3. Writing words (syllables)
    4. Nouns
    5. Adjectives
    6. Verbs
    7. Subjects

    1. Capital letters
    2. Subjects and objects
    3. Clauses and co-ordinating conjunctions
    4. Subordinating conjunctions

    Revise Year 3 and 4 grammar.


    1. Sentence types
    2. The colon

    Revise Year 3, 4 and 5 grammar.


    1. The subjunctive after that
    2. The subjunctive in conditional sentences
    3. Determiners

    Autumn 2

    8. Commas
    9. Clauses
    10. Pronouns
    11. Direct speech
    12. Capital letters
    13. Determiners

    5. Direct speech
    6. Lists
    7. The past perfect tense
    8. Direct speech
    9. Reported speech

    Revise Year 3 and 4 grammar.


    3. Question tags
    4. Active and passive

    Revise Year 3, 4 and 5 grammar.


    4. Non-finite clauses
    5. Adverbials
    React time
    6. Ellipsis

    Spring 1

    14. The apostrophe of possession
    15. The apostrophe of omission
    16. Clauses
    17. Prepositions

    10. Apostrophe of possession
    11. Practice with the apostrophe
    12. Possessive adjectives
    13. Prepositions and preposition phrases

    Revise grammar from autumn term.


    5. The semi-colon

    SATs and end of key stage preparation
     

    Selecting language that shows good awareness of the reader (e.g. the use of the first person in a diary; direct address in instructions and persuasive writing).

    Selecting grammatical structures that reflect what the writing requires (e.g. using contracted forms in dialogues in narrative; using passive verbs to affect how information is presented; using modal verbs to suggest degrees of possibility).

    Using a range of devices to build cohesion (e.g. conjunctions, adverbials of time and place, pronouns, synonyms) within and across paragraphs.

    Using verb tenses consistently and correctly.

    Using the range of punctuation taught at key stage 2 (e.g. inverted commas, semi-colons, colons, brackets, dashes).

     

     

     

    Spring 2

    18. Tenses
    19. Direct speech
    20. Adverbs
    21. Subject-verb agreement
    22. Negatives

    15. Relative clauses
    16. Brackets
    17. Dashes
    18. Grammar demons

    Revise grammar from autumn term.


    6. Tenses

    Summer 1

    23. Modal verbs
    24. Progressive tenses
    25. Adverbs
    26. Word families
    27. Commas
    28. Present perfect tense

    19. Adverbs and adverb phrases
    20. Grammar demons
    21. Nouns and noun phrases
    22. Adverbs
    23. Pronouns and possessive pronouns

    Revise Year 3, 4 and 5 grammar.


    7. Verb prefixes
    8. Grammar demons

    Summer 2

    29. Adverbs
    30. Sentence types
    31. Synonyms and antonyms
    32. Prefixes
    33. Punctuating noun phrases

    24. Using nor
    25. Participles
    26. Appositive phrases
    27. The comma: mixed exercises

    Revise Year 3, 4 and 5 grammar.


    9. Suffixes
    10. Hyphens

     

     Helping with Spelling

    Your child will usually have a spelling test every week. Please help your child to learn the spellings before the test, and then revise them with your child after.

    There are many ways to practise spellings:

    • Ask your child to write the spellings out;
    • Support your child in using the ‘look, cover, spell, check’ method;
    • Create home-made, colourful posters together for the words your child is having difficulty in spelling. Pin them up in a prominent place at home;
    • Play a game by looking for words within words, e.g. ‘iron’ and ‘men’ in ‘environment’;
    • Break the words up into syllables or chunks, e.g. ono, mato, poe, ia – onomatopoeia;
    • Read regularly. Ask your child to follow the text while you read. Also, encourage your child to read independently. This will help increase sight recognition so he or she will be able to check whether the spelling attempt ‘looks correct’.

    Below, are the current KS2 spelling lists for Autumn 1. Please review these with your child to check that he or she can still spell them accurately.

    YEAR 3 AUTUMN 1
    WEEK 1 WEEK 2 WEEK 3 WEEK 4 WEEK 5 WEEK 6 WEEK 7

    First 10 words from NC Year 3 and 4 List:

    accident
    accidentally
    actual
    actually
    address
    answer
    appear
    arrive
    believe
    bicycle

    Key vocabulary from Shackleton’s Journey:

    keen
    crew
    breed
    vital
    robust
    conquer
    expedition
    engineer
    endurance
    navigator

    Adding suffixes beginning with vowel letters to words with more than one syllable.

    forgetting
    forgotten
    beginning
    beginner
    prefer
    preferred
    gardening
    gardener
    limiting
    limited

    Second set of 10 words from NC Year 3 and 4 List:

    breath
    breathe
    build
    busy
    business
    calendar
    caught
    centre
    century
    certain

    Key vocabulary from Shackleton’s Journey:

    sail
    groan
    cruel
    attempt
    proceed
    encounter
    resemble
    abundant
    furiously
    laborious

    The / I / sound spelt y elsewhere than at the end of words:

    hymn
    myth
    mystic
    gym
    gymnast
    Egypt
    Egyptian
    pyramid
    mystery
    rhythm

    Third set of 10 words from NC Year 3 and 4 List:

    circle
    complete
    consider
    continue
    decide
    describe

    different
    difficult

    disappear
    early

     

    YEAR 4 AUTUMN 1
    WEEK 1 WEEK 2 WEEK 3 WEEK 4 WEEK 5 WEEK 6 WEEK 7

    Revise the first 10 words from NC Year 3 and 4 List:

    accident
    accidentally
    actual
    actually
    address
    answer
    appear
    arrive
    believe
    bicycle

    Key words from Charlotte’s Web:

    runt
    litter
    grunt
    brook
    enchant
    relieve
    discard
    captivity
    lonely
    cunning

    Adding suffixes beginning with vowel letters to words with more than one syllable.

    permit
    permitted
    permitting
    attract
    attracted
    accept
    accepted
    accepting
    vomit
    vomiting

    Revise the second set of 10 words from NC Year 3 and 4 List:

    breath
    breathe
    build
    busy
    business
    calendar
    caught
    centre
    century
    certain

    Key words from Charlotte’s Web:

    errand
    decent
    meekly
    briskly
    merely
    anxious
    hysterics
    conscience
    approximately
    vaguely

    The /I/ sound spelt y elsewhere than at the end of words:

    mythical
    mystical
    gymnasium
    gymnastics
    hieroglyph
    pyramid
    mysterious
    hysteric
    hysterical
    rhythmical

    Revise the third set of 10 words from NC Year 3 and 4 List:

    circle
    complete consider
    continue
    decide
    describe

    different
    difficult

    disappear
    early

     

    YEAR 5 AUTUMN 1
    WEEK 1 WEEK 2 WEEK 3 WEEK 4 WEEK 5 WEEK 6 WEEK 7

    First 10 words from NC Year 5 and 6 List:

    accommodate
    accompany
    according
    achieve
    aggressive
    amateur
    ancient
    apparent
    appreciate
    attached

    Key words from Tales of the Greek Heroes:

    trident
    haunted
    torrent
    immortal
    clustered
    nymphs
    sceptre
    hearth
    wielded
    deceitful

    Endings which sound like /∫es/ spelt – cious or – tious:

    vicious
    precious
    conscious
    delicious
    malicious
    suspicious
    ambitious
    cautious
    fictitious
    infectious

    Second set of 10 words from NC Year 5 and 6 List:

    available
    average
    awkward
    bargain
    bruise
    category
    cemetery
    committee
    communicate
    community

    Key words from Tales of the Greek Heroes:

    plough
    yield
    improvident
    prophecy
    prudence
    precious
    kindle
    devoured
    chasm
    guileful

    Endings which sound which sound like /∫el/:

    official
    special
    facial
    crucial
    artificial
    partial
    martial
    confidential
    essential
    substantial

    Third set of 10 words from NC Year 5 and 6 List:

    competition
    conscience
    conscious
    controversy
    convenience
    correspond
    criticise
    curiosity
    definite
    desperate

     

    YEAR 6 AUTUMN 1
    WEEK 1 WEEK 2 WEEK 3 WEEK 4 WEEK 5 WEEK 6 WEEK 7

    Revise the first 10 words from NC Year 5 and 6 List:

    accommodate
    accompany
    according
    achieve
    aggressive
    amateur
    ancient
    apparent
    appreciate
    attached

    Key words from Private Peaceful:

    skeletal
    agitated
    boisterous
    blaspheme
    tribulation
    commandment
    mesmerise
    conspiracy
    menacing
    meningitis

    Endings which sound like/es/ spelt – cious or – tious:

    gracious
    unconscious
    ferocious
    nutritious
    fictitious
    infectious
    atrocious
    capricious
    fractious
    facetious

    Revise the second set of 10 words from NC Year 5 and 6 List:

    available
    average
    awkward
    bargain
    bruise
    category
    cemetery
    committee
    communicate
    community

    Key words from Private Peaceful:

    vulgar
    confiscate
    liberate
    abandoned
    entice
    unkempt
    trespass
    intermittent
    embellish
    precarious

    Endings which sound which sound like/el/:

    residential
    impartial
    potential
    demential
    primatial
    circumstantial
    consequential
    commercial
    beneficial
    antisocial

    Revise the third set of 10 words from NC Year 5 and 6 List:

    competition
    conscience
    conscious
    controversy
    convenience
    correspond
    criticise
    curiosity
    definite
    desperate

     

     Inspiring Resources

    The World Book Day website is a useful resource all year round. Click here to visit the website.

     

     

    Use the Centre for Literacy in Primary Education’s (CLPE) website to find out about your favourite poets and their poems. You can watch and hear poets being interviewed and reading their poems. Click here to visit the website.

     

     

    Millbank Academy

    Millbank Academy, Erasmus Street London SW1P 4HR
    office@millbankacademy.org.uk
    Tel: 020 7641 5945