Building excellence in the teaching and learning of English is a key priority at Deer Park West Primary School.
The essential features of the DPW English program are as follows;
- Two hours of explicit English teaching and learning occurs in each classroom, every day. This includes time devoted to the development of reading skills, habits and behaviours, writing and oral language (Speaking and Listening).
- Teachers employ a range of whole class, small group and individual instructional practices based on the needs of their students.
- Assessment practices are used to identify, set goals and teach to the point of need of each student.
Creating a literacy-rich home gives your child every opportunity to engage in reading, writing, speaking and listening, and supports them to practise the new learning that they are undertaking at school.
These tips and activities can also be used by a child’s older siblings and grandparents, or other relevant people in a child’s life, to help develop their literacy skills.
- Lots of books. With lots of books your child will see reading as a normal activity and will always have something new to read.
- Create a language-rich bedroom and home for your child, with alphabet and word posters, and labels.
- Organise a bookshelf to display your child’s books.
- Create a comfortable space for your child to read, perhaps with cushions and blankets, to encourage your child to see reading as a relaxing and fun activity.
- Regularly discuss what your child is reading.
- One of the most important ways to get your child reading is to model reading for your child. Children are encouraged to read – and to see reading as a normal part of the day – if they see their parents reading often. Siblings, grandparents, and other relevant persons in a child’s life can also be reading role models.
- Reading together is a valuable thing to do. Reading increases your child’s vocabulary, expands your child’s understanding of the world, and gives them confidence when using language. Reading is also an important way to make the link between spoken words and written words.
- Visit the local library. Encourage your child to also borrow from the school library
- If your child likes an author, find another book or a series of books by the same author.
- Encourage your child to read about their favourite author or illustrator at their website.
Encouraging your child to write often by providing writing materials and supporting them to write for a range of everyday reasons can help them to see writing as a purposeful.
The suggestions below can help to encourage your child to develop their writing skills:
- Encourage your child to write for a variety of purposes e.g. shopping lists, Birthday cards.
- Create a special ‘writing box’ to store your child’s pens and pencils helps your child see writing as an important activity. Have different pens and pencils, and a place to write, encourages your child to write more often.
- Support your child to read back their writing.
- Encourage your child to draw a picture or create something to match the writing.
ORAL LANGUAGE (Speaking & Listening)
Regularly talking and interacting with your child extends their language and listening skills, and helps grow their confidence with language. Talk as much as you can with your child and engage them in conversation often.
The following can assist your child to develop their oral language skills:
- Include your child when discussing everyday activities such as grocery shopping, gardening, cooking dinner, collecting mail from the mailbox, doing housework, and travelling in the car or bus.
- Outings can also provide a world of new vocabulary. Discussion during outings can enrich your child’s understanding of the world. Outings might include going to the park, the zoo, a shopping centre, museums, libraries and art galleries.
- Story-telling is a great way to extend your child’s language and listening skills, as well as expanding their imagination. Either you can tell the story, or encourage your child to tell the story. Make it exciting, with different voices, puppets, props or a finger play.
- As your child gets older, discuss news and current events can enrich your child’s understanding of the world.