Discuss the similarities and differences between the National Literacy Strategy at Key Stage 2 and the Framework for Teaching English Years 7, 8 and 9. You must make references to wider research and inspection evidence that has underpinned the development of the two strategies. There are many similarities and differences between the National Literacy Strategy at Key Stage 2 and the Framework for Teaching English Years 7, 8 and 9. The National Literacy Strategy sets out teaching objectives for reception to Year 6 enabling pupils to become fully literate.
It ensures high expectations of pupils, and understands how pupils progress throughout years at primary school, it also helps to offer balance between reading and writing. The Framework for Teaching English builds upon the guidelines and requirements given in the National Curriculum, however it is more specific. Whereas the National Curriculum is statuary the Framework for Teaching is only recommended. Many small primary schools have classes that have two year groups in them, the teachers of these classes run the curriculum on a two year rolling programme.
The National Literacy Strategy is based on 2 year cycles, so objectives within years 2/3 3/4 and 5/6 are more closely linked than those between these pairs of years. It is quite common that these mixed year groups are treated as mixed ability classes. However in these classes there will sometimes be conditions, where more differentiation is justified. It is important to keep the organisation for the amount of differentiation as close as possible to the literacy hour.
Changes should be as simple as possible for example; Following the plan for the literacy hour but increasing the time spent working in smaller groups rather than as a whole class; Increasing the time of the literacy hour to allow more time for group work while not altering the whole class working time, however this can take time away from other curricular subjects throughout the rest of the day; and involving an additional adult within the lesson to provide support for those that need it.
These options should be thought about carefully to maximise the benefit for all children, it is possible to be able to balance them, the additional adult could help on two day a week, the literacy hour could be extended for some, but not all days to provide the extra focus for the particular groups within the class; able children, low attainers and children who need help to prepare for or to follow up class work. Attainment is carefully assessed. Pupils who in Year 3 have not achieved basic standard can go over Key Stage 1 work, pupils may need to cover or reinforce word level objectives from Key Stage 1.
Less able pupils often receive inconsistent attention while the more able ones are left to ‘cruise’. The Framework is for all pupils at Key Stage 3. It states that all pupils are entitled to the highest expectations and support, although some pupils will need additional support and others will need to be challenged. Effective differentiation ensures that teaching can be based on the Framework whatever the ability range of the class. Different strategies are used to differentiate work for the different levels of pupil ability.
In Key Stage 3 pupils entering Year 7 who have not yet secured the important skills that enable them to be independent readers and writers are able to revise and cover what was taught in Key Stage 2, this is linked to the opportunities that can be had during Key Stage 2. The Framework for Teaching also lays out a clear line of progression to be charted in teaching plans. Teachers can choose and use texts to deliver the objectives relevant for the year group.
Pupils in one school studying a certain array of books will one way or another have covered the same objectives by the end of the key stage as pupils in another school who have studied quite different texts. Studying a Range of texts remains an important principle. A range of books contributes to progression in the secondary years because it enables pupils to generalise about their reading experiences, compare and evaluate texts against each other, and to become more discriminating readers.
Progression is defined by the Framework for Teaching as a planned increase or refinement of skills, understanding and knowledge, and not simply progressing through the pages of a set text. The structures of both the National Literacy Strategy and the Framework for Teaching are very similar. Each term focuses on a particular style of reading and writing. The National Literacy Strategy contains three strands; Word Level, Sentence Level and Text Level.
They are all interrelated and essential for pupils learning, however in the Framework for Teaching although it has the same three main strands the Text Level is split into a further three strands: Reading, Writing, and Speaking and Listening. The context for the Framework for Teaching was set after the success of the National Literacy Strategy in primary schools and it was discovered that reading standards were higher than writing, Girls were achieving more highly than boys, there was a dip at transfer and during Key Stage 3.
The benefits for the Framework for Teaching were that it safeguarded and built on the gains made at Key Stage 2 through the National Literacy Strategy. It improved continuity of teaching and learning from Year 6 to Year 7. It improved motivation for both pupils and teachers in Key Stage 3 and made pupil prepared for work in Key Stage 4. Organisation and management of the Literacy Hour in the National Literacy Strategy offers a structure of the classroom management, designed to maximise time teachers spend directly teaching their class and intended to shift balance, from independent teaching to group or whole class teaching.
It was discovered that when a pupil is taught individually they are taught on an average of five to six minutes a week. Whole class work means that in the Literacy Hour, pupils will spend about 3/4 of the lesson being taught as part of a whole group or ability group and about 1/4 individually, working independently on reading or writing work. Careful management offers high levels of involvement for all pupils particularly the less able, who generally gain confidence quickly.
The Framework for Teaching does not thoroughly go into the organisation and management of the activities but it is clear that during secondary school it is common for a class to be taught as a whole class in their ability groups, however sometimes on occasion lesson are taught in small groups or even individually if the class sizes are small enough however in this day and age it is unlikely that class sizes are ever small enough.
In conclusion I feel that although there are a lot of differences between the National Literacy Strategy and the Framework for Teaching they are very similar. Both focus on the progression of pupils learning and the need to differentiate throughout the years enabling the less able to learn the objectives and the more able to progress further, however I feel the need to state that nowhere in either of these documents does it state that ‘average’ pupils that are neither higher or lower ability receive any form of differentiation or extra help.