Focus English: At the Heart of the Curriculum

by Ros Ferrara
Focus English: At the Heart of the Curriculum


- Description
Updated with new additional units by Rebecca Gough & Bethany Hunter

Focus English is a literature-based English curriculum from Focus Education.

Its aim is to support teachers and leaders with planning to guarantee there is continuity and progression in the teaching of English and to support pupils in mastering and deepening learning.

The curriculum is based on the use of high-quality texts which provide the driver for the unit. Across each year group, texts from classic to current authors have been selected to ensure that pupils experience a wide and rich reading curriculum to promote a life-long love of reading. Similarly, a range of poetry is fully integrated.

Each unit is broadly 6 weeks with flexibility built in to extend, adapt activities or introduce alternative activities based on rigorous on-going assessment. Outcomes and objectives are clearly identified, and activities planned to ensure that they are based on the year group learning.

Attention has been paid to looking at progression within each objective, breaking them down into steps towards achieving the end of year learning.

There is a sharp focus on reading and the units offer questions and activities which may be used in whole class or guided reading lessons. The beginning of each unit concentrates on understanding, responding to and deepening understanding of the text. This focus continues with on-going reading activities matched to the identified reading objectives. Word detective work should be a focus throughout.

Suggested incidental writing opportunities are identified throughout which includes working with vocabulary and sentences as well as responding to the text so that children have many opportunities to practise and consolidate writing skills.

Grammar work is clearly identified with all grammar being taught purposefully, in context so that it can be used in the identified outcomes. Grammar taught early in the year may not always be identified in subsequent units, but activities from units may be used in context in subsequent units to revisit and consolidate learning as necessary.

It will provide clarity and direction for all teachers and release them to focus on preparation and assessment.

How It Works

Overview of the learning journey towards each end of year objective: For each year group, every objective - reading, writing and grammar - is broken down into steps which indicate the knowledge and understanding required to master the end of year learning. These ensure that learning is pitched appropriately, and that progress is evident from unit to unit of work

Unit overviews: Six-week units, one for each half-term:

  • High quality text identified which links to science/geography/history topic
  • End of unit written outcomes identified - one narrative and one non-narrative and poetry as applicable
  • Opportunities for application of prior learning identified
  • Objectives identified for the unit with progression evident from term to term so that there is a clear process in which children acquire, practise and apply and deepen learning.
  • Focus Education is now able to offer additional units to provide you with more choice.
  • Look at the matrices to select the units you require.
  • You can now buy these individually; in a year group set or buy the whole suite of units.

Watch a review from Essa Primary School

Year 1
Lost and Found
Rabbit Problem and Peter Rabbit
The Bog Baby
The Naughty Bus
Meerkat Mail (Additional Unit)
Winnie at the Seaside (Additional Unit)
Billy's Bucket (Additional Unit)
Handa's Surprise

Year 2
Lila and the Secret of Rain
Little Evie in the Wild Wood
Man on the Moon
Own and the Pussycat
Traction Man is Here
Daisy Saves the Day ( (Additional Unit)
Paddington at the Palace (Additional Unit)
Vlad and the Great Fire of London (Additional Unit)
The Bakers Boy and the Great Fire of London (Additional Unit)
Jack and the Baked Bean Stalk (Additional Unit)

Year 3
Firework Makers Daughter
Greek Myths
Orion and the Dark
Stone Age Boy and Boy with the Broze Age Axe
The Flower
Secrets of a Sun King (Additional Unit)
The Abominables (Additional Unit)
Pugs of the Frozen North (Additional Unit)
The Boy who grew Dragons (Additional Unit)
The Girl who Lost a Leopard (Additional Unit)
Stig of the Dump (Additional Unit)

Year 4
Egyptian Cinderella
Eascape from Pompeii
The Incredible Book Eating Boy
The Pied Piper
The Promise
The Wind in the Willows
Roman Diary the Journey to Iliona (Additional Unit)
Who Let The Gods Out (Additional Unit)
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (Additional Unit)
The Great Chocoplot (Additional Unit)
The Queen of Darkness (Additional Unit)
The Land of Roar (Additional Unit)

Year 5
Journey to Jo'burg
Lady of Shalott
Leon and the Place Between
The Man Who Walked Between the Towers
The Nowhere Emporium
The Explorer (Additional Unit)
The Great Kapok Tree (Additional Unit)
Who Let the Gods Out (Additional Unit)
Viking Boy (Additional Unit)
The Last Bear (Additional Unit)

Year 6
Spider and Fly
Tales of the Arabian Nights
The Golden Horseman of Baghdad (Additional Unit)
Holes (Additional Unit)
The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas (Additional Unit)
Pig Heart Boy (Additional Unit)
Kensuke's Kingdom (Additional Unit)
Darwins Dragons (Additional Unit)
The Vanishing Trick (Additional Unit)

+ More Information
Publisher: Focus Education UK Ltd
Published Date: Jun 2017

Focus English Whole School
Product Reference: FEWS
Format: USB + Box
Pages: 3058 in total
Price: £450

Focus English Key Stage 2 (KS2)
Product Reference: FEKS2
Format: USB + Box
Pages: 2153 in total
Price: £320

Focus English Key Stage 1 (KS1)
Product Reference: FEKS1
Format: USB + Box
Pages: 971 in total
Price: £150

Focus English Year 1 (Y1)
Product Reference: FEY1
Format: eBook
Pages: 414 in total
Price: £75

Focus English Year 2 (Y2)
Product Reference: FEY2
Format: eBook
Pages: 557 in total
Price: £75

Focus English Year 3 (Y3)
Product Reference: FEY3
Format: eBook
Pages: 533 in total
Price: £75

Focus English Year 4 (Y4)
Product Reference: FEY4
Format: eBook
Pages: 458 in total
Price: £75

Focus English Year 5 (Y5)
Product Reference: FEY5
Format: eBook
Pages: 597 in total
Price: £75

Focus English Year 6 (Y6)
Product Reference: FEY6
Format: eBook
Pages: 499 in total
Price: £75

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+ Sample Pages