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English as an additional language

Great Yarmouth has a diverse population, and there are currently around 200 pupils at the academy who have English as an additional language - around a quarter of our students.

Between them they speak more than a dozen languages, with the Portuguese, Lithuanian, and Slovakian among the most popular.

Pupils with English as an additional language are fully integrated into mainstream lessons. At Charter, we believe in teacher-led lessons. Teachers lecture and pupils listen in a calm and very focussed environment, free from disruption. In this way, pupils are able to hear standard English, carefully and clearly expressed throughout the school day.

We teach for memorisation. This involves choral repletion and revisiting key knowledge repeatedly over a series of lessons. This approach is particularly beneficial for EAL pupils.

We adopt a SPEAK approach to teaching.

  • S: standard English is deliberately modelled by all staff. All staff insist upon standard English responses from pupils. Mistakes are always corrected.
  • P: pupils must respond confidently with good projection. In this way, we are able to correct pronunciation, build confidence and improve the content of pupil responses.
  • E: we use a great deal of choral response and individual “call and response” activities at Charter. This echo approach ensures improved confidence, pronunciation and retention.
  • A: teachers adopt a “no hiding place” approach to questioning and deliberately ask a range of pupils to contribute. Teachers deliberately focus upon pupils lacking confidence in their spoken English.
  • K: memorisation is a strong focus at Charter. This takes many forms. A key feature is that teachers keep revisiting key knowledge

Pupils in the early stages of English acquisition often work with a buddy who shares their mother tongue but who is also proficient in English. We also provide bilingual dictionaries to help with independent development.