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Oracy is the ability to articulate ideas, develop understanding and engage with others through spoken language.

At Swain House Primary School, oracy plays a prominent role in teaching and learning. We believe spoken language to be essential in the development and achievement of our children across the curriculum and understand that oracy skills are vital to success in school and in life. We ensure that oracy is at the heart of the school in terms of how the pupils learn, and how teachers plan and deliver speaking activities.  We strive to develop oracy skills through the curriculum, assemblies, extra-curricular activities and the whole ethos of the school.

The National Curriculum for English reflects the importance of spoken language in pupils’ development.  Oracy is embedded throughout our broad and balanced curriculum, and is explicitly taught throughout. Lessons are talk-rich, and questions are carefully planned to ensure all children can fully participate and that specific oracy learning dispositions are developed and consolidated .

At Swain House Primary School, there is a shared understanding of how talk supports learning and children’s social development.  We aim to encourage fluent speakers, who are confident to communicate, debate and present in a wide range of contexts.  Additionally, there are opportunities for pupils to develop their oracy skills outside of the curriculum. This is achieved through pupil voice groups, year group productions, assemblies, visiting speakers, topic events and participation in local events.

Oracy can be described as a combination of learning to talk and learning through talk.

We use the oracy framework that was developed by The University of Cambridge and Voice 21. This framework breaks oracy into four strands:

  1. Physical
  2. Cognitive
  3. Linguistic
  4. Social and Emotional

The framework allows both staff and pupils to understand what makes good spoken communication. The four strands enable successful discussion, inspiring speech and effective communication. The framework is used by staff to give feedback and assess progress and can be seen below...

Here are some pictures of the oracy displays we have up in our classrooms linked to their four strands...