Literacy across the Curriculum

Examples of some departmental Communications initiatives can be seen in the Religious Studies, History and Design and Technology strategies below:



The Communication Skills Religious Studies and History assess are:

  • Explanation
  • Discursive Writing
  • Analysis


How we develop these skills

Accurate spelling is developed through regular spelling homework and spelling tests.  Students are encouraged to use their journals to help them with their use of connectives and Communication Skills.  Activities such as gap fills are used to encourage sophisticated use of connectives.  Furthermore, students are sometimes asked to highlight the connectives they have used in a piece of work in order for them to reflect on their use of connectives.  Activities to improve use of apostrophes include students marking sample answers according to their use of apostrophes.  Students are encouraged to re-visit their work to improve their spelling, punctuation and written style.

In terms of Communication Skills, students are supported in their development of discursive essays with the use of essay structures and tables or colour-coding of points ‘for’ and ‘against’ as scaffolding.  Sample answers are used to highlight good explanation, analysis and use of evidence.  Students are encouraged to use the whole-school acrostic ‘Point, Evidence, Explain’ (P.E.E.) to develop their explanation skills and, in History, ‘Nature, Origin and Purpose’ (N.O.P.) to structure their analysis of the reliability of sources.  We also use pair and small group discussion to develop students’ abilities to explain their points and evaluation key questions.

How we assess

Assessments take various forms including essays, reports and letters in History and Homework Booklets in Religious Studies.  The assessments are either set as homework or are completed in examination conditions.

Communication Skills in Design and Technology

In Key Stage 3 Design and Technology students develop their literacy skills within their project work in Food Technology, Resistant Materials and Textiles. The specific skills that are taught and assessed are:

  • Analysis
  • Evaluation
  • Instruction



Students are also assessed on a specific element of SPaG (Spelling and Grammar) each half term.  

Students’ literacy work is supported through the use of a wide range of visual learning aids. These help students in the following ways:

Modelling the structure for a written task

Supporting students in the correct use of grammar

Providing students with the correct spelling for subject specific vocabulary


For information on Post 16 Communications click here