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Year 1 Language and Literature

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Teaching Children to Read and Write

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In Key Stage 1, schools must attend, first and foremost, to the crucial mission of early education: teaching children to read. Reading is a critical ability required for most other learning, including writing and arithmetic.

There are two approaches for teaching children to read. The first emphasises the 'nuts and bolts' of written language (phonics, decoding, spelling, handwriting, punctuation, grammar and vocabulary), and the second approach emphasises the need for children to be nourished on a rich diet of poetry, fiction and non-fiction (focusing on the meanings and messages of written words). Schools need to embrace both of these approaches because it is important to pay attention to the basic how-to skills of reading and writing and the richness of literature and creative expression.

Goals and Activities for Year 1



This is adapted from pages 3 - 12 of What Your Year 1 Child Needs to Know, which can be purchased here.

This activity has cross-curricular connections: click below to see related activities (repeated owls show multiple related activities in that subject).

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