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Speaking and Listening

Speaking and Listening

"Real conversation catches fire ... you emerge from a good conversation, or a series of conversations a slightly different person."

Theodore Zeldon


"He understands badly who listens badly." 

Welsh Proverb



At Bishop's Hull Primary School, we want to give our children the ability to communicate effectively and confidence in the art of speaking and listening. We want our children to apply their skills and knowledge across the curriculum to debate, discuss, take on roles, ask and answer questions, listen and enjoy conversing. We believe that by teaching children to become effective speakers and listeners we  empower them to better understand themselves, each other and the world around them. 

We teach speaking and listening explicitly as well as finding opportunities to reinforce and extend children's developing skills. We embed this teaching in all subjects. Different subjects offer opportunities for different kinds of talk. Speaking and listening opportunities are both planned  and incidental. 

Pupils have access to a wide range of speaking and listening taught opportunities which include:

  • Talking about their own experiences, recounting events
  • Participating in discussion and debate across the curriculum
  • Talk for Writing within planned writing units
  • Retelling and reciting stories and poems
  • Expressing opinions and justifying ideas
  • Listening to stories read aloud
  • Whole class reading 
  • Responding to different kinds of texts
  • Taking part in school performances
  • Role play and other drama activities across the curriculum
  • Listening to ideas and opinions of adults and peers
  • Talking to visitors in school
  • Educational trips

Teachers understand that being a good role model for oracy is crucial. Feedback about oracy is also important. If a child says something incorrectly, rather than focus on their mistake, teachers repeat back what is said to them using the correct phrasing. Where possible, teachers praise and give feedback on speech specifically, even when oracy is not the objective or main focus. For example, "I think you explained that clearly."


Bishop's Hull Primary School assesses children against age related expectations in reading. These expectations have been organised into bands which reflect the year group, for example Band 1 is the end of year expectation for children in

Year 1.