Literacy and Numeracy

At KES we recognise that literacy and numeracy are at the heart of successful learning and of raising standards in every area of education.

Every teacher is a teacher of literacy and numeracy and has a responsibility to ensure that students develop these important skills in every lesson. Our Key Literacy strategy this year is ACE - Analyse, Compare and Evaluate. All students have the sentence starters in their planners to use in all lessons when Analysing, Comparing or Evaluating. House points will be awarded when they have used them successfully.

Please take time to download the information examples of ACE below which provides suggestions of everyday activities that can help your child improve these key skills.

Remember, literacy is vitally important. The difference between Five 9-5 grades at GCSE is approximately £350,000 of earnings over a lifetime.  That could be the difference between living a comfortable life and a difficult and compromising one.  Literacy is everything. 


A definition of numeracy:

Numeracy is a proficiency which is developed mainly in mathematics but also in other subjects. It is more than an ability to do a basic arithmetic. It involves developing confidence and competence with numbers and measures. It requires understanding of the number system, a repertoire of mathematical techniques, and an inclination and ability to solve quantitive or spatial problems in a range of contexts. Numeracy also demands understanding of the ways in which data is gathered by counting and measuring, and presented in graphs, diagrams, charts and tables.

The purposes of our whole-school numeracy policy:

  • To develop and improve standards in numeracy across the school;
  • To ensure consistency of practice including methods, vocabulary, notation, etc;
  • To indicate areas for collaboration between subjects;
  • To assist the transfer of pupils’ knowledge, skills and understanding between subjects.

Please find below a parent numeracy booklet, numeracy across the curriculum overview and posters.

Let Me Play Literacy / Numeracy catch up sessions

KES uses an external organisation called Let Me Play to run it's literacy and numeracy catch up sessions. Let Me Play are a leading Youth Organisation which provides a range of sports, positive activities and education for young people. The organisation runs a range of programmes in schools, communities, youth centres, colleges and residential settings.

The programmes are meticulously designed, planned and implemented to enable young people the most out of the activity and are supported by highly qualified teachers and coaches. Our team of professionals work together, motivating and enabling Let Me Play participants to gain as much as possible from their time with us.

The mission at Let Me Play is for young people to leave inspired and empowered to achieve more, do more and be the best that they can be. To create a social movement where young people experience a programme which motivates them creating a high impact, long lasting impression.

Programme Objectives

  • Using high-quality staff and high ratios the Let Me Play programme aims to provide an intensive intervention for those who need additional support.
  • To deliver a vibrant engaging programme which motivates and enthuses students about School.
  • To engage beyond the student and with families by inviting parents to sample the school and the array of activities.
  • The programme provides a very structured approach to confidence and self-esteem building to instil belief in what each young person can achieve.
  • Through lessons specifically designed by education specialists to assess literacy and to identify gaps in learning.
  • Negate learning loss and promote teamwork and cohesion.
  • To provide a workbook of learning which allows a handover to the school to assess the activities, learning and stage of the student.

Please find below the report for 2018.

Tips on how you can make a difference to your child’s progress

  • Read! Read! Read!  The more a child reads, or is read to, the better they will perform in Literacy and English.

  • Do you have a tablet or a Kindle?  If so, see if your child prefers reading on one of these.  Many books are free on these platforms!

  • Model reading yourselves.  Be it a newspaper, magazine, novel or on your tablet; if a child sees you reading they will be inspired to read themselves.  Talk to your child about what you are reading and what they are reading – discussion and talk improves Literacy.

  • Do you, or your child, have a tablet, smartphone or iPad?  If so, you can download so many word games which are fun and interactive – see below for some of the best FREE games which help the brain buzz! 

  • Make sure your child writes whenever possible – the more practice the better!  For example – get them to write thank you letters or help you with complaint letters.  Find their interest and create an online blog so they keep writing.

  • Spellings – if you notice your child struggles with certain spellings, go through them.  There are a variety of spelling strategies available.  Go through them and find the right one.  Focus on spelling patterns and homophones.

  • Punctuation!  Punctu-action!   This is one of the areas where pupils struggle the most.  Without basic punctuation, writing doesn’t have meaning or make sense.  Without more complex punctuation, it doesn’t create an effect on the reader.  Whenever possible, make your child to practice different types of punctuation.  Start with capital letters, full-stops, exclamation marks and question marks.  Move on to commas, apostrophes, colons and semi-colons. If you are feeling super-brave, try the hyphen, ellipses, parentheses and speech marks!

  • Never, ever tell your child that you hate reading.  This will discourage your child and have a negative impact, as parents/carers are a child’s biggest influence.

  • Explain that Literacy is important in every lesson, not just English.  Literacy now counts 5% towards every subject in GCSE

  • Look at go4schools grades for English.  Talk with your child about their grades and how to improve them.  Have a discussion about how they can improve and encourage them to speak to their teacher.

Free Literacy-based apps for your tablet or smartphone

  • 94 Seconds – naming words in certain categories…score as best you can in 94 seconds!
  • ‘Words’ – linking words on a grid, it will help spelling!
  • Lexica – Like Sodoku with letters…this is a tough one but fun!
  • Word Mess – locating and finding words before the bomb goes off!
  • Skill Builder Spelling – Helps to improve spellings
  • Literacy Planet – A ‘world’ of Literacy games
  • The Opposites – find the contrasting words before they drop!
  • Word Abacus – this one includes numeracy within literacy!
  • WordZAbout – helps to develop a ‘posher’ vocabulary
  • 4pics 1 word – Can you work out what links the pictures?
  • Word Jigsaw – The name describes the game!
  • Word to Word – Understanding word connections
  • Outworded – A free wordsearch game, with a twist.
  • What’s the Team – Spelling the sports teams related to the pictures – good for sports fans!
  • Words with Friends – you can play other people online or on smartphones!  Give your child a game!
  • Grammar: Punctuation by Dragons – Helps build an understanding of punctuation in a fun way!
  • Pearson Grammar Prep:  This one does cost (cheap), but is useful practice

Resources to support at Key Stage 3 (Years 7/8/9)

The BBC Bitesize website has all the main elements of Key Stage 3 – including interactive games and puzzles. It has a revision section and an area where you can test yourself.  It has every Key Stage 1-4 subject covered in great detail.  In the English section (linked below) it contains interactive work for Reading, Writing and Communication.

The National Literacy Trust is a charity which focuses on Literacy for all.  Included on this website are their schemes and resources to encourage literacy for young people.

A fun one!  The Comic Master website allows pupils to create their own online graphic novels.

Key Stage 3 resources to buy

Workbooks are good. These allow your child to have ownership over their work, as they can work through them at their own pace. The links below show some companies who offer these books.


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