The literacy hour sets the pace

26th May 2000 at 01:00
The latest reports examined by Reva Klein

Children respond positively to the literacy hour when teachers display confidence and are encouraging in their attitude. However, while some teachers report that it has boosted children's confidence, others say it prevents teachers from using their expertise.

Since its national introduction in September 1998, the National Literacy Strategy has made a major impact on how primary schools organise their teaching of English and other subjects. As a result, more discrete subject teaching is taking place.

Time has become of the essence with the introduction of NLS. To accommodate the lit-eracy hour, schools have had to adopt strategies that make the most efficent use of their time.

One practice that has gone is the time-honoured tradition of listening to individual pupils read. Parents and teachers critical of dropping it say that if children are not listened to, there is a danger of overlooking those who are lagging behind in their reading.

Teachers report that the problematic aspect of the literacy hour that they find most difficult is group work; many say they are unsure of how to go about it.

Collaborative group work is rare and is usually superseded by individual work.

Implementing the National Literacy Strategy: How Are Teachers Managing? by Dr Sue Beverton, Durham University. For more details e-mail: S.L.Beverton@

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now