In order to promote high standards of literacy across Villiers High School, our aim is to create an environment within which all students can learn to read widely, think and write critically and communicate effectively. We believe that literacy and reading widely are vital to a young person’s education and promotes an appreciation for lifelong learning. Emphasising the development and use of academic language across the school will support this focus on life-long learning and embedding literacy skills for life. To ensure that students’ reading ages improve, their chronological reading age is assessed when they join the school and we can build upon it with them so that they leave prepared for the academic rigour of future study. Read more Phonics Reading Scheme.
Whole School Literacy Priorities:
1. To develop and embed extended writing strategies across the curriculum.
2. To continue to develop and embed a culture of reading across the school.
3. To further develop the ‘speak like a scholar’ program.
We have developed a program which empowers our students to speak, write and read like a scholar. Students are equipped with many resources for each of their subjects such as knowledge organisers, command words and sentence starters.
At Villiers, students are encouraged to challenge and expand their vocabulary by using our Words of the Week program. This is incorporated into their planners and students are introduced to five words which will be learned and developed in their lessons throughout the week.
As part of their equipment, the students are required to have a reading book. They will be encouraged to read aloud in lessons and take part in form time discussions about the books they are currently reading. The students regularly take part in STAR reading tests which enable them to discover their reading age, which helps their teachers support them more effectively in class.
Our library is stocked with a huge range of books including many from the Accelerated Reader range, which allows students to access a selection of books that are suited to them. Accelerated Reader is a powerful tool for monitoring and managing independent reading practice and motivates students to read for pleasure. The students are able to pick books suited to their reading age and ability from our library. The books are clearly labelled and organised into reading ages, enabling students’ autonomy of choice.
Throughout the school year, we have numerous events to celebrate the high standard of literacy throughout the school and among our students. We have termly celebrations of our top book borrowers. Prizes are awarded to the top ten students who have loaned the most books throughout their term and the prizes consist of book tokens, new books and trophies.
We love celebrating World Book Day at Villiers High School and we make the day as interactive as possible. Lower school are challenged with treasure hunts, identifying the characters around the school or matching the teacher with their favourite quote from their favourite book.
As we are an Eco school, our eco days play an important role in informing our students about important issues facing them. We encourage students to write and deliver speeches, to inspire peers into action. Teachers are instructed to not use technology to encourage students to use their oracy skills. There have been many successes on Eco-Day such as Maths lessons taking place outside, hands on practical science experiments and fabulous plays being created in English.