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Oracy programme

Oracy programme

Reading and writing float on a sea of talk.

James Britton

At Someries Infant School and Early Childhood Education Centre, we are committed providing robust support so that all pupils can vocalise their thoughts, communicate effectively and share their ideas.

Communication is central to our pupils’ lives and is an essential component of their academic journey. From an early age, the primary motive for learning to talk is to be able to communicate with others in collaborative activities or for a particular need. By improving our provision for oracy and developing pupils’ communication skills further we can increase their confidence in communicating and aid their academic progress. A focus on oracy has never been more essential following the period of school closures and the disruption to pupil’s learning caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

We are committed to building understanding of language and making this more prevalent within our school by focusing on:

  • the importance of language for social learning and communication
  • the structure of language and vocabulary for building powerful knowledge
  • developing effective communication through expansive speech within lessons

Our pupils are able to apply subject-specific vocabulary independently during lessons. They are also supported by language structures to communicate effectively.

Our Oracy programme

To further enhance our oracy provision, we have developed and implemented an Oracy programme which enhances our provision across the whole school. This project focuses on five phases:

Pupils are introduced to new words and vocabulary which are tiered by difficulty. The selection of these words was informed by research-based evidence and will be delivered incrementally throughout the year to enhance the pupils vocabulary.

Our learning environments will be reviewed and enhanced so that they contain ‘static’ language structures to help scaffold pupils’ responses within lessons.

Pupils will engage with Oracy programme lesson cycles which aim to enhance their communication and language skills. These lessons are differentiated and tailored to respond to the developmental age of each year group.

Pupils will participate in peer reading activities and our school’s My Big Voice initiative will be enhanced to provide additional ways to challenge pupils’ language development.

Research-based evidence

At Someries Infant School and Early Childhood Education Centre, we pride ourselves on being able to respond proactively to pedagogical initiatives. This ensures that we are availing of the benefits of current pedagogical advancements and findings. Whilst developing our provision for oracy we ensured that we utilised high quality resources and research-based evidence to inform our practice. These included:

  • Training from The Inspire Partnership
  • Training and resources from Voice21
  • Closing the Vocabulary Gap by Alex Quigley
  • Transform Teaching and Learning Through Talk: The Oracy Imperative by Amy Gaunt and Alice Stott
  • Avril Coxhead’s Academic Word List