A unit of work should assist a teacher in gradually progressing their pupil’s skills and understanding. It must also consider and cater for the needs of all their pupils. When planning my unit of work (See Appendix A) I needed to create a resource that is an effective teaching tool and a fun, enjoyable unit of work that both the pupils and I will benefit from. I believe that I have achieved this, and to justify my work fully I must consider what makes a good unit of work. Firstly, it is essential that any unit of work links specifically to the National Curriculum and Primary Framework objectives.
The National Curriculum categorises English into three main attainment targets, reading, writing, and speaking/listening. To ensure that my unit of work effectively incorporated all of the three targets, I have worked in line with the Primary framework strands and designed lessons to ensure that the pupils reach set objectives. I understand that the strands of the framework can often interlink and it is possible to cover a number of strands and objectives within one lesson. I have strategically planned my lessons to give pupils the capability to achieve a variety of objectives in each lesson.
For example during the concluding lesson to the topic the children will carry out a drama activity, which gives the opportunity to develop their drama skills, whilst attaining objectives for many other skills such as presentation, speaking and listening. Throughout my unit of work I have focused on developing the children’s reading skills, incorporating both shared and guided reading into every lesson, ensuring they have the opportunity to practice and expand on their skills.
Teachers can face problems when explaining to pupils how to read, as adults can find that reading is so fluent and automatic for themselves, it is difficult to fully comprehend pupils lack of understanding. To improve my understanding and confidence in incorporating reading into my unit of work I discussed strategies with my class teacher. She explained to me the importance of giving the pupils the opportunity to read with clear instruction, and careful modelling.
Pupils should always read for a purpose, and simply reading a book quietly at the beginning of the class is not necessarily the most effective use of time. With this in mind I decided to use shared reading at the beginning of every lesson. I will give each pupil a copy of the same newspaper article, and together we will read the article out loud. This will allow me to model to the class the strategies and skills needed to develop their reading ability, and also gives pupils the opportunity to gradually develop their confidence and assume more responsibility for their own reading.
(www. wikipedia. org) The Shared reading strategy is excellent for encouraging pupils to participate in reading in an enthusiastic and active way while increasing their reading success. (Medwell, 2001) My unit of work focuses on reading a journalistic report as the shared reading activity. The reason for using similar texts every lesson, is to help the children to familiarise themselves with this text type, which should help them when required to create a piece of writing in this style. I also plan to use guided reading into my unit of work on a daily basis.
It is important that teachers do not neglect guided reading after Key Stage one but instead include it into literacy throughout the primary phase. The department for education state that ‘Guided reading is well suited to meet the needs of pupils at all stages of the reading experience’ (Department for education and skills, P. 28). Therefore, pupils with a secure reading technique at the higher end of Key stage two will still benefit from effective guided reading strategies and activities.
To incorporate this into my week of literacy I have planned to work with a different group of pupils each day, carrying out a reading and comprehension task in relation to journalistic writing and different text types (See lesson one of Appendix A). To ensure that I will be able to focus on a small group of guided readers, I will carry out this activity when the whole class are working on task. This will allow me to deliver the introduction and plenary to the whole class, ensuring that all pupils understand the aims and objectives of the lesson.