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Spoken Language



At Chiseldon Primary and Nursery School, we recognise that speaking and listening allows pupils to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually. Speaking and listening activities also enable pupils to both acquire knowledge and build on what they already know. Having all the skills of language are essential to allowing pupils to participate fully as members of society. Pupils who learn to speak and listen, fluently and confidently are at an advantage in their future lives. 

We aim to promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping pupils with a strong understanding of the spoken word and to communicate and develop a love of communication through speaking and listening for a range of purposes for enjoyment.

Through teaching of speaking and listening and across the school curriculum we will:

  • Meet the requirements of the national curriculum programmes of study for speaking and listening
  • Provide numerous opportunities to listen and respond appropriately to others
  • Provide a broad balanced curriculum with lots of opportunities for children to ask relevant questions to extend their understanding and knowledge
  • Build and enhance the range of vocabulary which is used when speaking
  • Equip pupils with the skills to become confident, audible and fluent speakers in a range of situations
  • Develop children’s ability to effectively articulate and justify answers, arguments and opinions
  • Increase attention and active participation in collaborative conversations
  • Equip pupils with an increasing command of Standard English
  • Encourage and provide many opportunities for children to participate in discussions, presentations, performances, role play, improvisations and debates
  • Encourage pupils to discuss, consider and evaluate different viewpoints



At Chiseldon Primary and Nursery School we teach speaking and listening skills as part of English lessons although these skills are applied and practised across the curriculum and through a range of curriculum enrichment activities. The speaking and listening skills, taught in each class, build on the skills taught in previous years, allowing children to continuously build on their skills. Our expectations are high and we aim to equip children to use speaking and listening skills with a vital throughout their everyday lives both academically and socially.

We recognise that it is vitally important to increase children’s vocabulary so they are able to understand what they hear in the world around them and allow them to express themselves in more effective ways. As children move through the school, from Foundation Stage to Year 6, they are taught the vocabulary which allows them to move from describing their immediate world and feelings to developing a broader, deeper and richer vocabulary to discuss abstract concepts and a wider range of topics. There is a focus on ensuring the understanding of context and instructional words (compare, predict, arrange, prepare). Therefore, we ensure that children are exposed to a wide range of vocabulary that enables them to do this effectively.

As pupils progress through the school they are taught to develop their competence in spoken language and listening to enhance the effectiveness with which they are able to communicate across a range of contexts and to a range of audiences. All children have the opportunity to work in groups of different sizes – in pairs, small groups, large groups and as a whole class. They are taught understanding of how to take turns and when and how to participate constructively in conversations and debates. During Foundation Stage, the children learn the vital first skills from the Foundation Stage curriculum. In Key Stage 1, children often need higher levels of modelling and scaffolding and support to manage group discussions. As children move into Key Stage 2, the skills they have learnt can be applied more independently and they can take greater control for managing group discussions and the focus shifts to the ability to listen and build on the ideas of others and the complexity of the types of task increase.  In Upper Key Stage 2, there are further opportunities to take part in speaking and listening activities, through inter-school debating, presentations and events.

Children have many opportunities to perform to a large audience and to learn and practise the skills required and these performances become more complex and less supported as the children move through the school. All children perform in a class assembly every year. Additionally, they perform in a nativity play during Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1. During Key Stage 2, all children will take part in a Key Stage 2 production every year allowing them to gain the required skills to take on the larger roles at the end of the key stage.

Across the school, speaking and listening is taught through a variety of activities and is often linked to a high quality class text or topic. All pupils receive feedback on their spoken language and listening so they can improve their knowledge and skills and develop their use of effective spoken language. Children who are struggling with speaking and listening skills receive additional support, additional intervention and outside agency support is accessed when required.  



Children will leave Chiseldon Primary School being literate. They will be able to listen carefully and attentively and speak clearly. They will be able to ask deep and meaningful questions to improve their understanding and take part in collaborative discussions. They will be confident in speaking in a range of situations, in front of a range of audiences and be able to express their ideas clearly. Children will have understanding of and the ability to use a range of vocabulary, which will mean they can fully understand what they are hearing and they are able to articulate what they want to say. They will be equipped, not only with the skills to speak and listen effectively using standard English but to be able to apply these in their everyday lives and in their next stages of education- for research, information and to explore the world. The most important impact we want for our children is that they develop confidence and a love of communication through speaking and listening.