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Castle School

Castle School





We lay the foundations for writing with a focus on gross and fine motor skills, self-expression and mark-making, and phonics. Many of our learners will then progress to formal writing, which we develop as a life skill through practical, real-life activities and experiences. 


  • Pre-formal: A focus on posture and the building of gross-motor skills through physical activity and mark making.
  • Semi-formal: A focus on letter formation and pencil grip, alongside an understanding of sentence structure using colourful semantics and an introduction to phonics and spelling.
  • Formal: A focus of the conventions of sentence and paragraph structure by writing from experience and for different purposes.


We track progress through Evidence for Learning, with photo and video evidence of students' reading linked to relevant frameworks (see below) and to EHCP targets.

Some formal learners may have written exercise books. 

  • Pre-formal: assessment will be through Routes for Learning, Engagement model, flower frameworks or early rainbows (gross and fine motor, writing) depending on the most appropriate for each learner. Students will work towards Moving On accreditation in Key Skills.
  • Semi-formal: assessment will be via the Castle rainbow and Gemstone levels. Students will work towards a Moving On accreditation in Literacy or Key Skills, or a Functional Skills qualification.
  • Formal: assessment will be via the Castle Gemstone levels. Students will work towards an OCR Entry Level qualification.