Communication, Language, Literacy and Reading

Language, Literacy and Reading

Central to our Language, Literacy and Reading curriculum is the shared belief that all pupils have a right to a language rich curriculum that enables them to be part of our social world.

Early literacy work is deeply rooted in a child’s ability to respond and communicate, and therefore Language, Literacy and Reading sits as part of our Communication aim (CLLR). For many of our pupils, learning the fundamentals of communication are absolutely key to their development along our CLLR framework, where pupils can later acquire more formal Literacy skills.

Emergent literature in the teaching of Literacy has shown that:

‘Students with significant disabilities, including those with communication needs, can benefit from the same type of activities used with typically developing children but may require more time and opportunity.’ Erikson and Kopphenaver 2020

Our curriculum flexibly allows the acquiring, rehearsal and extension of core CLLR skills throughout the course of a pupils’ school journey. This allows teachers to align the delivery of personalised learning intentions with a whole school curriculum offer.

We share high aspirations for our pupils, recognising that:

‘The best literature has a power that goes beyond words’ Grove 1998, and it is our intent to expose our pupils to the richness of literature.

The Communication, Language, Literacy and Reading aim, recognises the huge impact the use of quality literature has on pupil learning and engagement. Therefore in EYFS and Key stages 1,2 and 3 quality texts are the vehicle for much of our learning across the 10 Fordwater aims, exposing our pupils to the wonders CLLR can bring to our understanding and engagement with the world.




Essential to our Communication, Language, Literacy and Reading Curriculum is the belief that:

‘No student is too anything to be able to read and write’ Yodel 2000

Much like our philosophy that our pupils have a right to be offered a print rich environment, we also believe that our world is full of sounds, through which our pupils gain an inordinate amount of understanding about what is going on around them.

Early auditory discrimination and the attaching of meaning to different sounds, forms the earliest foundations of our Phonics and Reading Curriculum at Fordwater. The active skills of discriminating one sound from another are essential to the development of later more formal phonological skills such as phonemic awareness, which contribute to the development of reading strategies.

Soundwaves - Phonics for All Policy 22-23

Reading Policy Statement

At Fordwater we recognise all of our pupils as readers, with the right to develop literacy skills that enable them to engage and play an active role in the world around them.

‘The right to live and learn in environments that maintain the expectations and attitudes that all individuals are literacy learners’. Literacy Bill of Rights (2000).

At Fordwater, we offer a reading curriculum that is aspirational and progressive for all, in an environment where communication , reading, books and print are highly valued. We understand that reading is a complex process made up of many elements, and may look different for each of our pupils, depending on their skills. All pupils are offered high quality ‘reading’ experiences through a literacy rich environment and ethos, alongside learning opportunities that are engaging, functional and prepare out learners for life after Fordwater. Pupils work on individual Communication, Language, Literacy and Reading targets that are sequentially planned by teachers through our Fordwater Aims Curriculum. Reading is developed through 8 core areas:

See Discriminating and Listening to Sounds and Formal Phonics  

  • Environment and Ethos
  • Physical Handling of Books
  • Mark Making and Writing
  • Functional Skills
  • Memory
  • Storytelling and Narrative Sequencing
  • Vocabulary and Comprehension