INTENT: The vision for Oracy at Lakeside
At Lakeside, oracy is the 'O' strand of our approach to a curriculum that will develop 'PROUD learners with life long skills and a key focus for all children. We want children to recognise and develop the skills that will help them to be successful communicators throughout their lives in school and beyond. The children take an active role in evaluating what a 'respectful communicator' is. This helps them to build on previously taught oracy skills and apply them through conversations in a range of formal and informal situations. New vocabulary is taught explicitly and embedded throughout all lessons and subject areas; closing the vocabulary gap is essential in developing communication skills.
We want children to be effective communicators who can express themselves creatively and confidently, in a fluent and coherent way. We therefore model the use of language structures to improve the way in which children share their ideas which in turn develops their reading and writing skills.
Curriculum Design, Coverage & Progression
We recognise that oracy as an essential underpinning skill to support attainment across all National Curriculum subjects. Therefore, oracy skill development is considered and planned for across all subject areas from nursery through to year 6. In the EYFS, communication and language is one of the three prime areas of learning and development. Oracy is also an essential part of the characteristics of effective learning and the development of children's self-regulation and executive function; to be able explain and articulate thoughts, ideas and emotions is an essential building block for children.
Building on the good practice in EYFS, oracy skills are then embedded and built upon in all curriculum areas throughout years 1-6 as it is recognised as being essential for effective teaching, learning and development. This is done by providing lots of opportunities for talk trio discussions, using language structures and following the discussion guidelines in all lessons. The children are challenged to continually show good speaking and listening skills whilst responding to and building on what others say.
Resources that we use to support oracy across school are: 'Progression in Language Structures' which is a document used by all year group teams to plan for effective modelling and language use in lessons and 'communication in print' (CiP) which supports children's understanding of a range of vocabulary and words.
Whole-school, ongoing CPD continues to support all members of the teaching and support staff to understand oracy and its importance in all subject areas. Teachers discuss key vocabulary and language structures during planning time each week and plan a range of activities and approaches to embedding and developing these skills throughout all core and wider curriculum subjects.
Key vocabulary and language structures are always displayed and referred to in class to encourage children to use them. Talk is valued in every lesson and children are encouraged to share their ideas with partners, in talk trios and small groups and individually when speaking to the whole class. Oracy toolkits and success criteria are used to show what is expected and to guild the children during conversations.
Staff continually model good language and communication verbally in all lessons and challenge the children to practice and respond using the same high expectations and quality language structures. The use of Standard English is a key aspect that is modelled.
CiP shows a picture alongside a word; this dual coding supports all learners to develop independence, understanding and to use and apply new vocabulary. CiP is used to create a range of resources to support the development of language and oracy skills throughout the academy.
Each of our topics begin with a 'big question'. This is then referenced throughout the topic and children are encouraged to reflect upon their learning journey and discuss the new information that they know in relation to these questions. Our writing units have a specific oracy focus and there is clear progress in each session from speaking about a new concept and developing the skills needed to successfully write about them too. We begin our topics with a 'wow' event, these hook the children into the learning and build excitement. We often end with a celebration, performance, discussion or reflective activity to round up the learning during the whole topic. This gives all learning a real purpose and supports children to reflect and see the interwoven elements of their educational journey. Having purposeful, engaging and exciting learning experiences lead to high quality conversations which inspire creativity, wonder and a passion for learning.