Skip to content ↓

More than a school

Spoken Language

Purpose of the Curriculum

(What will a high quality Spoken Language education do for our children?)

The importance of spoken English is demonstrated throughout the curriculum.

  • It will underpin the development of reading and writing.
  • Pupils will hear high quality and varied language
  • Pupils will have the opportunity to develop their confidence when speaking in public.
  • Pupils will discuss their understanding of books they have read to prepare their ideas before they write.
  • Pupils will learn how to participate in discussion and debate.
  • Drama will play a significant role allowing pupils to create, adopt and sustain roles, answer questions.
  • Pupils will improvise, devise and script drama for a range of purposes.
  • Pupils will learn to work in groups of different sizes including individually, partners and small groups.
  • Pupils must receive constructive feedback on their use of spoken English

Aim of the Curriculum

(What does the Spoken Language curriculum aim to ensure all pupils know or can do?)

  • Enhance pupils’ vocabulary
  • Understand nuance in meaning
  • Understand how to use language figuratively
  • How to work out the meaning of new or unfamiliar vocabulary
  • Pupils will learn how to control their speaking including the use of correct spoken English
  • Pupils will learn how to use the correct grammatical terms to describe their writing. 

Statutory requirements for Year 1-6

Pupils should be taught to:

  • listen and respond appropriately to adults and their peers
  • ask relevant questions to extend their understanding and knowledge
  • use relevant strategies to build their vocabulary
  • articulate and justify answers, arguments and opinions
  • give well-structured descriptions, explanations and narratives for different purposes, including for expressing feelings
  • maintain attention and participate actively in collaborative conversations, staying on topic and initiating and responding to comments
  • use spoken language to develop understanding through speculating, hypothesising, imagining and exploring ideas
  • speak audibly and fluently with an increasing command of Standard English
  • participate in discussions, presentations, performances, role play, improvisations and debates
  • gain, maintain and monitor the interest of the listener(s)
  • consider and evaluate different viewpoints, attending to and building on the contributions of others
  • select and use appropriate registers for effective communication. 

Key Stage 1 Curriculum Overview 

Year 1:

  • Teachers should ensure that their teaching develops pupils’ oral vocabulary as well as their ability to understand and use a variety of grammatical structures, giving particular support to pupils whose oral language skills are insufficiently developed.

Year 2

  • The sooner that pupils can read well and do so frequently, the sooner they will be able to increase their vocabulary, comprehension and their knowledge across the wider curriculum.
  • Pupils at the beginning of year 2 should be able to compose individual sentences orally.

Key Stage 2 Curriculum Overview 

Year 3/4

  • They should be learning to justify their views about what they have read: with support at the start of year 3 and increasingly independently by the end of year 4.
  • Teachers should make sure that pupils build on what they have learnt, particularly in terms of the range of their writing and the more varied grammar, vocabulary and narrative structures from which they can draw to express their ideas. Pupils should be beginning to understand how writing can be different from speech.
  • Specific requirements for pupils to discuss what they are learning and to develop their wider skills in spoken language form part of this programme of study. In years 3 and 4, pupils should become more familiar with and confident in using language in a greater variety of situations, for a variety of audiences and purposes, including through drama, formal presentations and debate.

Year 5/6

  • During years 5 and 6, teachers should continue to emphasise pupils’ enjoyment and understanding of language, especially vocabulary, to support their reading and writing. Pupils’ knowledge of language, gained from stories, plays, poetry, non-fiction and textbooks, will support their increasing fluency as readers, their facility as writers, and their comprehension. As in years 3 and 4, pupils should be taught to enhance the effectiveness of their writing as well as their competence.
  • By the end of year 6, pupils’ reading and writing should be sufficiently fluent and effortless for them to manage the general demands of the curriculum in year 7, across all subjects and not just in English, but there will continue to be a need for pupils to learn subject-specific vocabulary. They should be able to reflect their understanding of the audience for and purpose of their writing by selecting appropriate vocabulary and grammar. Teachers should prepare pupils for secondary education by ensuring that they can consciously control sentence structure in their writing and understand why sentences are constructed as they are. Pupils should understand nuances in vocabulary choice and age-appropriate, academic vocabulary. This involves consolidation, practice and discussion of language.
  • Specific requirements for pupils to discuss what they are learning and to develop their wider skills in spoken language form part of this programme of study. In years 5 and 6, pupils’ confidence, enjoyment and mastery of language should be extended through public speaking, performance and debate.

Knowledge or Skills relevant to our school

Key Stage 1

  • All pupils will learn to justify their own opinion through Community of Enquiry lessons.

Knowledge or Skills relevant to our school

Key Stage 2

  •  All Year 6 pupils to be ready for the demands of secondary school (KS3/KS4)
  • All pupils will learn to justify their own opinion through Community of Enquiry lessons.