Our school is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people. We expect all staff, visitors and volunteers to share this commitment.
If you have any concerns regarding the safeguarding of any of our pupils please contact the school
Our Child Protection and Safeguarding policies can be found here
Well done to Anastasia and Imogen-Amelie in Early Years who have completed their reading rainbows today. We shall have to buy some more books soon!
Well done Imogen from EYFS. She has completed her first reading rainbow and chosen a book from Mr Churchill's bookcase. Good job Imogen!
Well done to Alisha-Mai and Juliette who have completed their reading racetracks and chosen a book from Mr Churchill's bookshelf this morning. Great choices!
English for communication, consolidation and community
At Heatherlands Primary School, communication is at the heart of the curriculum. All children will be equipped with the skills they need to interact with the learning in all subjects, and to navigate their daily lives. Teaching and learning in English provides the bedrock for developing excellent communication skills: within spoken language, within reading and within writing.
We have a text-driven English curriculum, whereby high-quality texts support progress and outcomes in reading and writing. Children are encouraged to read widely; in the earlier stages to decode, and then to develop fluency and confidence, which in turn will build their comprehension skills. High quality literature sparks children’s imaginations and inspires high quality writing outcomes in each year group.
As the National Curriculum 2014 states, “Pupils’ acquisition and command of vocabulary are key to their learning and progress across the whole curriculum.” The school aims to cultivate a vocabulary-rich environment, as a means to helping all children develop their experience and understanding of the world.
Consolidation happens through regular opportunities for the children to put their learning in all areas of English into practice independently, not only within English but in foundation subjects too. These “sites of application” of learning provide robust opportunities for teachers to assess children’s performance.
Through the English curriculum, children consolidate the essential skills for effective communication and are thus equipped to become confident and eloquent members of the community, on a school level, a local level and a global level. They will be given the skills to take an active role in life as a British citizen.
“If pupils cannot read, they will not be able to access the curriculum, and will be disadvantaged for life.” (Research for Education Inspection Framework, 2019)
Reading is placed at the heart of our curriculum. We aim to create readers who are not only able to decode texts successfully and confidently, but can also enjoy and understand deeper meanings within the literature they read. Children embark on their reading journey with fast-paced, engaging phonics lessons (please see our rationale for teaching phonics), and the fluency they develop leads to effective comprehension skills. High quality texts drive the English curriculum, as sources of rich vocabulary and word play, providing a springboard into interesting and imaginative writing tasks and also a fascinating ‘window to the world’, building children’s general knowledge and cultural capital. Furthermore, rich texts inspire the writing outcomes in English lessons and provide the stimulus for the reading comprehension sessions that take place throughout the week.
Reading opportunities at Heatherlands
Of course, rich and stimulating texts drive the curriculum in English and dedicated reading sessions (as outlined above). The children also have a variety of other reading opportunities throughout the week.
Every day, the children are expected to read when they arrive at school, from 8.45 am, until 9.10 am. They read a variety of texts including fiction, non-fiction and poetry, and complete response activities, which link to different reading skills. During this time, teachers and TAs take the opportunity to hear the children read. Often, reading volunteers also read with the children.
At the end of the day, from 3pm, until 3.15pm, all teachers read to their classes. The onus is on reading for pleasure and enjoyment. We recognise that this is a valuable activity which ends the day in a calm and enjoyable way, and provides the children with a good model of fluent and expressive reading.
In Key Stage 2, ‘reading buddies’ takes place each week. Year 5 and 6 children are buddied up with children in Years 3 and 4, and undertake paired reading with them. They might also discuss their book choice and hear each other read independently. This is a valuable time when the older children act as reading role models, and both parties get a boost to their reading skills.
In the autumn term, EYFS classes run ‘Phonics Friday’ where parents are invited in to school learn about phonics alongside their children. These sessions have proved immensely popular with parents who welcome the way they helped the parents gain a better understanding of early reading and how they can help at home.
Each year, a number of pupils work with Dorset Reading Partners (http://www.dorsetreadingpartners.org.uk/) which is a charity that recruits, trains and equips volunteer reading partners to support children with their reading development. They provide one-to-one support for some of our vulnerable readers.
Some of our vulnerable readers in Year 5 are supported by our sports coach on Friday afternoons, reading books which they have chosen themselves and also taking part in fun, active and sporty activities during the session. The competitive nature of the session inspires the boys and they are able to read with a strong male reading role model.
Other bespoke reading interventions are run throughout the week by various members of staff.
The Heatherlands Reading Culture
We would like all the children in the school to be keen, motivated readers, who discover a wide range of literature, and are confident in making independent book choices. For this reason, we have tied our wider school values in with our reading culture:
We have incentivised reading initiatives across the school, which aim to get the children reading widely and often, both at home and in school.
In Key Stage 1, children are invited to complete the ‘Reading Rainbow’. Once a child has read fifty books, they are rewarded with a book from the head teacher’s special bookcase.
In Key Stage 2, the children take part in the ‘Ready, Set, Read’ challenge. They complete the different race tracks, which ask them to read a variety of book types. For example, in the first race, they must read a fiction book, a non-fiction book and a poem. They progress to the ‘marathon’ where they read 30 different types of books. At the end of each race, the children receive a reward, such as a book mark, a badge, a pencil or a book from the head teacher’s special bookcase.
There is a book swap bookshelf in the reception area next to the school office, from which parents can take a book to read at home with their children. This is to make books readily accessible to all parents, and to promote a love of reading.
The school has a link with P&G Wells, which is the oldest book shop in Winchester. They provide a book fair at least twice a year (one of which coincides with World Book Day) to offer our children the experience of browsing a book shop and making their own independent choices of what to read. The parents can come along at the end of the school day to browse and buy books with their children.
Well done to our next top rainbow reader, Samuel Trzebuniak from Cherry class. He has read 50 books! Good choice Samuel.
The Hampshire Advisory Service were so impressed with our book areas when they visited recently that they have asked to post photos of them on Twitter. They said: "Your books corners and ideas have been selected to go onto the Hampshire twitter feed as examples of exciting and innovative practice". #feelingproud
Reintroducing Bug Club.
Bug Club is a wonderful tool to change the children´s mind about reading as something tedious and transform it to the reality of reading as something fun, interactive, and challenging.
We are happy to announce that we are using Bug Club again as a resource to support reading at home. Every child has their own unique user name and the books selected for them have been carefully chosen to match their book band colour.
A Bug Club bookmark will be sent home with your child's user name and password and the school ID and you will be able to access books online that are suited to the needs of your child.
Please ask the class teacher if you need any information on using Bug Club but the children have also been shown how to access their own library of books.
Heatherlands Key Stage 1 Reading incentives scheme
Next week Heatherlands will be launching their brand new reading incentives scheme. In Key Stage 1 this will be in the form of a reading rainbow.
The children will be encouraged to read at home and will be rewarded each time they read by moving around the colours of the rainbow. They will initially start on the purple rainbow and this will be marked off by the teacher. (Please do not mark on the rainbow yourself.) After reading 5 times at home they will reach their first gold coin. A gold sticker will be given at this point and stuck on the chart. They will then move onto the blue rainbow. Once the child has read 10 more times at home they reach their next coin. After the yellow rainbow and finally the red rainbow they will reach the treasure chest. The prize for reaching the treasure chest will be a visit to Mr Churchill to choose a book from his bookshelf (which he will sign) to keep and bring home.
We hope the children in EYFS, Year 1 and Year 2 will enjoy following the reading rainbow, they will find out all about it on Monday in assembly. The rainbows will be stored inside the front cover of the children's reading journals and new rainbows will be added each time a child completes one - giving them more chances to get to the treasure.
Heatherlands Key Stage 2 Reading incentives scheme
Introducing the Key Stage 2 reading incentive: The Great Reading Race!
In order to incentivise reading and develop an inquisitive approach to books, Monday 21st October 2019 sees the launch of the Great Reading Race in Key Stage 2. Pupils will be challenged to read a range of different texts, books, magazines and newspapers, completing ‘races’ of different lengths.
For example, the ‘triathlon’ challenges children to read three books: a fiction text, a non-fiction text and a poem. When they complete this race, they will be rewarded with a prize. The races get progressively longer, with more prizes along the way, culminating with the ‘Marathon’ in which the children must read 26 different books and texts!
Details of what the children read as part of the incentives scheme will be in their reading journals – and the titles can be recorded in the reading journal and signed off by parents as well as teachers! See below for the ‘track’ with details of all the different races.
Paired reading project
Have you ever read a book aloud with someone else? Why not try using paired reading to help develop reading fluency. The children in Key Stage 2 at Heatherlands all have reading buddies to support each other with reading – Year 3 and Year 5, Year 4 and Year 6. Prior to reading, the readers decide on signals to show when one reader feels more confident to read independently. During paired reading, both readers initially read together in tandem. Have a look at the paired reading guide and give it a go yourself.
Some Haiku's from Miss Lawrence for National Poetry day 3/10/19
A Haiku consists of 3 lines and 17 syllables.
Each line has a set number of syllables see below:
Line 1 – 5 syllables
Line 2 – 7 syllables
Line 3 – 5 syllables
Soaking dry sponges
Dripped knowledge absorbed slowly
Wring it out later
Knowing they’re able
Teachers unlock potential
And let go the reins
Mrs A - TA for National Poetry day 3/10/19
My job every day
Is as a TA,
In a school that I love to work in.
I read and I write
Make shoelaces tight,
Give stickers for litter in bin.
Displays are my thing
I normally sing,
As I work round the school all day.
I love helping all learn
So housepoints they earn,
And encourage the Heatherlands Way.
Most important of all
I rush to the call,
Of children in all kinds of need.
It is always a pleasure
Each child is a treasure,
Each one a wonderful seed!
National Poetry Day is a UK-wide celebration of poetry taking place every October, with a different theme each year. In 2019, the theme is Truth.
The day generates an explosion of activity nationwide, with thousands of amazing events across the UK – in schools, libraries, bookshops and more – all celebrating poetry’s power to bring people together.
2019 is the 25th anniversary of National Poetry Day – so expect the celebrations to run all year long.
And if you head to the official National Poetry Day site you’ll find free resources produced in conjunction with the Betjeman Poetry Prize, Schofield and Sims and many others.
Heatherlands Primary School uses the Letters and Sounds phonics programme alongside Jolly Phonics. Phonics is taught daily in Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1. In Key Stage 2, phonics is taught where needed but is used as a reading/spelling strategy throughout.
Link to Jolly phonics:
Link to letters and sounds:
Website suggestions for phonics:
The children progress through the book band colour programme which allows the school to track, monitor and assess progress in line with age related expectations.
All children have a book band reading scheme book which they take home to read daily. It is recommended that children read as much as possible.
Children who cannot read well at the end of primary school are less likely to succeed in secondary school and, in adult hood, are likely to earn less than their peers. Children’s reading ability and later life chances, London :Save The Children
Early Years and years 1 and 2 have a reading record book which parents are to sign when having heard their child read at home.
Please refer to the guidelines letter to see the expectation of parental support with home reading for Key Stage 2.
Heatherlands Primary School have 2 book fairs annually, provided by Travelling Books. These are typically in the Autumn and Spring term. These are held in the main foyer of the original school building and are open from 3.15pm-3.45pm for a week.
We receive a great deal of commission on books sold which is spent on new books for your children so please do support the book fairs.
Letters and leaflets are sent out to inform you of dates and books your children can purchase.
Link to book fair:
All of the children's English work is linked to a wide range of high quality texts by a range of classic and modern authors.
English national curriculum:
At Heatherlands Primary School we follow the Nelson Handwriting Scheme. Children are taught to begin joining their handwriting from Year 1. Children will begin to use handwriting pens from Year 4.
At Heatherlands Primary School we follow the no-nonsense spelling programme inline with the National Curriculum. Children have spellings they need to learn at home on a weekly basis which they are then tested on at school. Children in Key Stage 2 also follow the cued spelling programme.
Spelling list link:
Annual Spellathon Event
At Heatherlands we have an effective and fun spelling award program called the Spellathon whereby our pupils can learn to spell tricky words at home and be awarded with bronze, silver and gold achievement badges. The Spellathon event runs in parallel to the pupils’ regular phonics and spelling activities.
There are three Spellathon event days over a chosen half term. The Spellathon event will be held on three separate days during different weeks where our pupils can go for their achievement badges of bronze then silver and finally be awarded our prestigious gold award.
Each of our pupils are given their own group Spellathon word lists to get into training with. Each of the words lists will be split into bronze, silver and gold award levels. Children will be encouraged to learn all of the spellings for the achievement badge they hope to go for. They are tested on a random number of words from the word list shared and need to get a certain number correct to be awarded their Spellathon achievement badge.
These words lists can be found on our Heatherlands school website within our children's section for their Year group area. Website address: https://www.heatherlands.poole.sch.uk/class-pages/
Throughout the school year there are various phonics, reading and writing workshops available for you to attend. Details of these will be sent to you by letter.
Advice for hearing your child read and spell:
Winter Warmers and Summer Sizzlers Events
We also have some parent reading events which are ran by our library providers Hampshire Library Service. At these events, you will be given advice about hearing your child read and then have the opportunity to spend quality time reading with your child in a relaxed environment - there's hot chocolate and biscuits too!
Advice for hearing your child read and spell: