Literacy Strategy

‘Young people who leave school without good literacy skills are held back at every stage of life. Their outcomes are poorer on almost every measure, from health and wellbeing, to employment and finance.’ (2020, Education Endowment Foundation.)

At Wollaston School, we recognise the importance of our responsibility to ensure that our young people leave school with good literacy skills so that their outcomes are richer on almost every measure.

Literacy impacts self-esteem, motivation, behaviour and attainment. For these reasons, we aim to promote high standards and expectations of literacy across all areas of the curriculum and beyond this, we have specific programmes in place to actively ensure the success of our students. Please read on to find out more about these.

1017 28September Ben Gregory-Ring-2

Termly Literacy Updates & Library Newsletters:

Spring Term 2021 - Please click HERE to read

Autumn Term 2020 - Please click HERE to read

Other Quick Links:


Jessica Woodcock (Literacy Leader):

Programmes and expectations:

Taking pride in accuracy and presentation:

Our students are encouraged to strive for the best standards of written accuracy that they can achieve- you will find a copy of the sticker below (showing our literacy marking symbols) in your child’s books for every subject. These symbols will be used by teachers, when appropriate, to indicate that correction is required, and for self or peer marking. Students are expected to take pride in their written work and presentation.

It is important for students to understand that we write and speak in many different situations in our lives- even within the course of a single day, and that each situation requires a different set of expectations and standards. The marking symbols indicate the basic standard expected for writing produced in our classrooms and for homework.


 Library Lessons:

All students in years 7 and 8 partake in one library lesson per week, as part of their English lessons. This provides an opportunity for the pursuit of reading for pleasure; for the building of core spelling, grammar, and punctuation skills and for our weekly ‘language investigation’ task based around a word of the week. Please see the termly literacy updates to find out each term’s ‘words of the week’. All students in year 7 and 8 are also set a weekly homework task based on the week’s language investigation.

The spelling, grammar and punctuation work completed during these sessions allows for: ‘Students to consolidate and build on their knowledge of grammar and vocabulary through extending and applying the grammatical knowledge set out in English Appendix 2 to the key stage 1 and 2 programmes of study’. (KS3 NATIONAL CURRICULUM). Activities allow for regular revisiting of the objectives set out in the KS2 National Curriculum, to ensure coverage and consolidation.


Wollaston Students are expected to read every day:

We expect students in all year groups to complete 20 minutes of reading each school day (and we work particularly hard to promote and embed this routine with our year 7-9 students). KS3 students record their weekly reading in a reading journal, which we ask parents to sign each week.


Our literacy skills are what allow for us to make sense of the world around us and to join in with the debates and discussions that matter to us. To understand and join in, we need to possess language for real life (or cultural capital). These sessions focus on a termly theme- for example, ‘The Language of the Media’ (with a focus on the concept of fake news) or Acronyms and Initialisms (sessions which encourage students to question the meanings behind the many abbreviations used in the language that we speak and read every day).


KS3 Form Time- DEAR:

Delivered during one form time session per week, DEAR (drop everything and read) is a form time session dedicated to pursuing reading for pleasure. Students are expected to attend the session with their current reading book, and they spend the session reading, alongside their form tutor. Daily reading has been demonstrated to impact students’ reading ages to such a degree that there is an increase seen in their grades across every area of the curriculum. This is why we also encourage students at Wollaston to read at home for 20 minutes per day.