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Ways to drive improvement in grammar, punctuation and spelling

Discussion in 'Primary' started by rsawatson, Jan 3, 2019.

  1. rsawatson

    rsawatson New commenter

    I am the co-leader of English in a large junior school. In our most recent OFSTED inspection (December 2018), pupils' accuracy in their application of the conventions of grammar, punctuation and spelling was highlighted as an area to improve.

    I am sure that every school has this problem to an extent, but to illustrate, too many pupils misspell words which they simply shouldn't be (e.g. words from the year 1 and 2 POS), miscopy correct spellings from their drafts into their best work, do not always apply basic punctuation which has been taught and, when questioned, understand how to use it (but don't apply this knowledge, despite reminders), etc, etc.

    I think it is certainly true that more curriculum time needs to be dedicated to the explicit teaching of proofreading skills and for pupils to put these into practice. In some cases, I also think we need to be more rigorous in our demands of the pupils, in terms of what is non-negotiable from a GPS perspective in each year group, ensuring they are held to account (suggestions on how to do this effectively welcomed). However, I would be interested to know whether anyone else has experience of a similar situation where an approach has been implemented which has made a significant improvement.

    One thing I am very keen to ensure is that whatever solution we devise, that it is manageable for staff. Marking pupils' work and then marking it a second time to effectively check that every error which ought to have been identified and corrected has been done so is not sustainable, so I would be particularly interested to hear of high impact, low workload ideas.

    Thanks in advance.

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