The new arrival programme runs for 3 months. This programme equips children with basic communication skills for everyday needs. Children are introduced to different greetings, names and places in and around school, stationery and classroom language. They also begin to learn names of body parts, verbs, family etc. This helps to increase the child’s everyday vocabulary and language progressively week by week. The language used in this programme is structured so that children learn how to use present tense in first and third person. They being to ask and respond to simple questions. At the end of the 3-month period, children are re-assessed to track their progress and next steps.
At Ranelagh, almost all our children speak English proficiently alongside their home language but some children who arrive at the school may require additional support with English.
As a result, we have staff members that are specifically trained in various approaches to support children who are new to English; our teachers are equipped with the knowledge and expertise to provide in-class support to help children learn, develop and apply new vocabulary and sentence structures. We also provide small group intervention sessions to ensure effective opportunities for speaking and listening, reading and writing.
Here at Ranelagh, we recognise children come from a variety of backgrounds, personal experiences and cultures. We do our best to cater for each individual child’s learning experience using and adapting different methods of pedagogy:
- Children are supported during the first few weeks and allocated a ‘buddy’ (preferably with the same first language) who will show them around the school and help them understand the new school routine. The ‘buddy’ will be a child from class chosen by the teacher, and in Key Stage 1 a Teaching Assistant will also support the child. Phonics and EAL assessment are carried out during the first two weeks of a child joining the school. The child will then be able to access support for phonics in the “Nessy” programme and support for everyday language through the ‘Racing into English’.
- Class teachers differentiate lessons and children are provided with effective opportunities to develop communication skills. In English we create target groups to ensure children are exposed to an array of skills working at word and phrase level: building on the child’s key vocabulary skills for everyday language use. Writing skills are also developed through structured scaffolding frames to encourage independent writing. We also provide bilingual dictionaries and talking picture dictionaries to support their learning in the classroom.
All this work supports the children to make rapid progress and very quickly become part of the Ranelagh success story.