The Devon Hospitals Short Stay School recognises the significant impact that English can have on the promotion of

  • basic literacy skills
  • confidence and self esteem
  • reflection skills
  • collaboration
  • relationship building
  • emotional well being
  • resilience
  • developing imagination
  • escapism

This is reflected in our teaching of English and Literacy across the whole curriculum.

Students of all abilities including those with SEND, and/or an EAL background are supported in meeting the requirements of the new national curriculum for English. There is close liaison with home schools for all pupils, including those working towards GCSE qualifications. For Key stage 4 pupils we will ascertain the exam board towards which they are studying and provide targeted support in specific programmes of study. This ensures that their educational experience across both contexts is as seamless as possible. The school has access to the texts and anthologies that are studied in preparation for English Literature examinations across all examination boards. There is also a wide range of resources including films, print media and games to support a variety of learning styles. Online activities allow staff to engage and support pupils in their learning in all key stages.

Early reading is largely taught through systematic synthetic phonics. Pupils attend DHSSS with a wide range of prior reading experiences and therefore, teachers liaise closely with the home school to ensure that a consistent approach is maintained, allowing continuity for the pupils. The school uses a variety of approaches to support reading including ‘Letters and Sounds’ . The school has a range of reading books, including audio and digital books, catering for pupils at EYFS and throughout KS1-KS4. Pupils are encouraged to read widely in many situations and to recognise that reading is a valuable life skill, rather than simply an academic subject.

Thanks to our links with the Readathon charity, we not only own a wide range of books but are able to give many away. Half-termly visits from the Readathon storyteller provide inspiration for developing creative thinking and descriptive writing skills.

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