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The Nethersole

CofE Academy and Nursery

Inspire, Enjoy and Achieve, in the love of Jesus Christ


English at Nethersole


Throughout their journey at Nethersole, we believe that every child should:


  • Have the opportunity and support to become fluent, confident and skilled communicators, irrespective of their context or starting point;
  • Be exposed to a rich and diverse range of experiences, in both Reading and Writing, and be challenged to deepen and apply their English skills and knowledge throughout the curriculum;
  • Develop conceptual fluency in Reading and Writing, through a carefully developed curriculum that encompasses the principles of cognitive neuroscience and best practice;
  • Enjoy a curriculum that places emphasis on evidence-led research: cognitive load theory, principles of instruction, making vocabulary explicit, ensuring that generative learning tasks fit together securely in a curriculum structure to develop excellence.
  • Experience a curriculum that is unapologetically ambitious, cohesive and rich in knowledge and vocabulary.

English in EYFS


In EYFS, Reading is at the heart of our curriculum and our aim is to encourage a love of reading right from the start. In EYFS, we aim to expose children to a range of books that not only develop a love of reading, but have been chosen specifically to develop their oracy, vocabulary and comprehension.


Books will be embedded in our provision through activities, story sessions and on display for children to access independently. Through this, children begin to internalise new vocabulary, language patterns and begin to retell stories. While we do not specifically follow the CUSP structure used in Key Stage 1, our curriculum is carefully constructed to prepare children and ensure that there is cohesion and consistency with our approach through:


  • The inclusion of high-quality texts which are age and stage appropriate Modelled reading and re-telling opportunities across each session
  • A focus on Tier 1, 2 and 3 Vocabulary
  • Dedicated phonics sessions, employing tricky and high-frequency words
  • Cooperative learning behaviours which develop oracy and interdependence.


Children are encouraged to apply their phonics in independent and supported writing opportunities across the curriculum from letters, to recipes, short stories and information reports.

English in Key Stage 1 and 2


At Netehrsole, in Key Stage 1 and 2 we teach Reading and Writing using Curriculum by Unity Schools Partnership (CUSP). 

CUSP is an evidence informed, carefully sequenced English curriculum, which maps core content in Reading and Writing across the primary journey, ensuring that learning is taught and revisited over time so that pupils commit their understanding to the long-term memory.



CUSP Writing draws on taught content from CUSP History, Geography and Science and from the depth study of core texts from the literature spine. Expert subject knowledge is carefully woven into each Writing module which gives teachers the opportunity to teach and rehearse key knowledge and skills before applying this learning to meaningful extended outcomes. The careful architecture of this curriculum ensures that pupils build on prior learning and maximise purposeful curriculum connections to become writers for life. Within the CUSP curriculum, punctuation and grammar is taught both directly and discreetly with pupils receiving a daily SPaG lesson.


Handwriting is taught using the programme, Letter-Join. Pupils learn pre-cursive handwriting in Year 1 moving to cursive handwriting in Year 2. In Key Stage 2, pupils continue to develop their speed, fluency and presentation of handwriting.



CUSP Reading is deliberately designed to be ambitious and aspirational, ensuring that every child leaves our school as a competent, confident reader. Drawing on the latest research around explicit vocabulary instruction, reading fluency and key comprehension strategies, this curriculum is a synthesis of what we know works in helping children make outstanding progress in reading and a distillation into consistent, well-structured practice.

Pupils will receive a daily diet of excellent reading teaching and this will be supplemented by regular opportunities to engage with shared reading experiences, promoting the joy of reading with the whole school community. The clear structure and principles ensure that teaching is progressive, challenging and engaging and the rich, diverse literature spine acts as both a mirror so that every child can see themselves in the core texts and as a mirror to engage pupils with experiences beyond their own field of reference.



We use the Little Wandle Letters and Sounds programme to plan and provide daily engaging phonics lessons. In phonics, we teach children that the letters of the alphabet represent a different sound, that these can be used in a variety of combinations and are put together to make words. The children learn to recognise all of the different sounds and combinations that they might see when they are reading or writing. Our phonics teaching starts in Nursery and follows a very specific sequence that allows our children to build on their previous phonic knowledge and master specific phonic strategies as they move through school. As a result, our children are able to tackle any unfamiliar words that they might discover. At Nethersole, we also model these strategies in shared reading and writing both inside and outside of the phonics lesson and across the curriculum. We have a strong focus on the development of language skills for our children because we know that speaking and listening are crucial skills for reading and writing in all subjects.