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Speaking and Listening Assessment












Yellow Stepping

Blue Stepping Stone

Green Stepping Stone

Early Learning





P level statements should be referred to for SEN children working at W level as appropriate

Pupils are able to retell a

Pupils are able to retell whole story and describe a character using cue cards.

Pupils willingly talk about matters of immediate interest. Pupils convey simple meanings to a range of listeners, speaking audibly. Pupils usually extend ideas or accounts, when talking, by providing more detail.

Pupils are able to retell a story

Pupils are able to retell a story, describe 2 characters and the setting.

Pupils are occasionally able to show awareness of the

Pupils are able to retell

Pupils join in with repeated refrains, anticipating key events and important phrases. Pupils use Isolated words and phrases and/or gestures to communicate with those well known to them.

Pupils describe main story settings, events and principal characters. Pupils question why things happen, and give explanations. Pupils begin to use more complex sentences. Pupils use a widening range of words to express or elaborate ideas. Pupils build up vocabulary that reflects the breadth of their experiences. Pupils begin to experiment with language describing possession

Pupils initiate a conversation and negotiate positions. Pupils link statements and stick to a main theme or intention. Pupils consistently develop a simple story, explanation of line of questioning. Pupils use language for an increasing range of purposes. Pupils confidently talk to people other than those who are well known to them. Pupils extend vocabulary, especially by grouping and naming. Pupils use vocabulary and forms of speech that are increasingly influenced by experience of books.

Pupils enjoy listening to and using spoken and written language and readily turn to it in their play and learning. Pupils speak clearly and audibly with confidence and control and show awareness of the listener, for example by their use of conventions such as ‘please’ and ‘thank you’. Pupils extend their vocabulary exploring the meanings and sounds of new words.


story, describing


story using cue cards and talk about main character.

Pupils usually talk about matters of immediate interest. Pupils sometimes convey simple meanings to a range of listeners. They are beginning to develop ideas when talking to others.

and describe 2 characters without cue cards.

Pupils are beginning to show confidence when talking, particularly when it is a topic of interest. When reading and reciting texts pupils can speak clearly and with intonation.

character and setting and to present to an audience.



developing and

listener by including relevant retail when they are talking.

explaining their ideas pupils speak clearly. Pupils are using a growing vocabulary when talking. Pupils are beginning to be aware that in some situations a more formal vocabulary and tone of voice are used

Listening and

Pupils listen to favourite nursery rhymes, stories and songs. Pupils respond to simple instructions. Pupils listen to others in one-to-one/small groups when conversation interests them.


Pupils listen with enjoyment, and respond to stories, songs and other music, rhymes and poems and make up their own stories, songs rhymes and poems. Pupils sustain attentive listening, responding to what they have heard by relevant comments, questions or action.

Pupils usually listen to others and are beginning to respond more appropriately.

Pupils listen to others and usually respond appropriately. They can listen with sustained concentration.

Pupils are beginning to listen and respond with growing confidence, e.g. by asking relevant questions or following instructions.

Pupils sometimes listen carefully and respond with increasing appropriateness to what others say.

Pupils listen carefully and respond with increasing appropriateness to what others say, e.g. by following up others’ points.


Pupils listen to stories with increasing attention and recall

Pupils pay attention to and take account of others’ views.



Pupils have emerging self- confidence to speak to others about wants and interests. They use simple grammatical structures. They ask simple questions, often in the form of ‘where’ or ‘what’. They talk alongside others, rather than with them. Use talk to gain attention and initiate exchanges. Use action rather than talk to demonstrate or explain to others. Pupils initiate conversation, attend to and take account of what others say and use talk to resolve disagreements.


Pupils can ask and answer questions. Pupils can make relevant contributions. Pupils can offer suggestion. Pupils can take turns.

Pupils can take turns to speak whilst listening to others’ suggestions. Pupils can explain their views to others in a small group situation.



and Interaction

Pupils use words and/or gestures, including body language such as eye contact and facial expression, to communicate.

Pupils use simple statements and questions often linked to gestures. Pupils use intonation, rhythm and phrasing to make their meaning clear to others.

Pupils interact with others, negotiating plans

and activities and taking turns in conversation

Pupils can work collaboratively in allocating tasks, considering

alternatives and reaching agreements

Pupils can work effectively in groups, e.g. taking a turn,

challenging supporting and moving on.

Pupils can respond to all members of a group by

questioning, use of eye contact and direct naming.




Pupils begin to use talk to pretend imaginary situations

Pupils can take part in wide range of ‘pretend’ activities, exploring situations and stories through imaginative play using props. They respond to other characters in role. They can pretend to be a character using action and language.

Pupils take part in a range of drama activities and use simple drama conventions e.g. freeze frame, hot seating. They can explore problems in an imaginary world. They can make up plays from stories and other stimuli. Pupils use dialogue in existing texts.



Pupils use action, sometimes with limited talk, that is largely concerned with the ‘here’ and ‘now’

Pupils use talk, actions, and objects to recall and relive past experiences


Pupils can work with others in presentation (e.g. a puppet play) participate in whole class dramas They can take turns speaking their parts and in small groups act out familiar stories

Can prepare and learn a few lines in their plays. Pupils can add simple orchestral effects e.g. sound effects or props to enhance their work. They use voices and bodies to create characters, employ language appropriate to characters



Say why they adopted a particular movement or voice Can discuss why they like a performance Demonstrate knowledge of the key difference between a play and a story

Talk about why they made certain decisions in their play and say how their work and that of others could be improved. Talk about how some drama effects are achieved in live or recorded performances.


are achieved in live or recorded performances. Lit/08.06/JPM School Improvement Service Working in Partnership with

School Improvement Service Working in Partnership with Lincolnshire County Council

Speaking and Listening Assessment












Pupils are able to explain motivation of one of the characters. Pupils begin to talk confidently in different contexts, exploring and communicating ideas. Conversation is sustained. Pupils can explain and give reasons for their choices.

Pupils are able to present main points of a narrative using character voices Pupils are able to show that they can understand the main points. Pupils can respond to the contributions of others. Pupils can use their voice effectively when presenting to others.

Pupils are able to speak in different tones/character voices when relaying main points of a narrative. Pupils are beginning to adapt what they say to the needs of the listener by varying the use of vocabulary and the level of detail. Pupils are beginning to show an awareness of Standard English and when it is used.

Pupils are able to defend the motivation of unsympathetic characters in narrative. Pupils are able to talk with confidence in an increasing range of contexts, e.g. to present a spoken argument, sequencing points logically, defending views with evidence and making use of persuasive language.

Pupils are able to counter arguments to opinions about narrative in a measured way. Pupils are usually able to adapt talk appropriately to suit the purpose, e.g. in a whole class debate. Pupils develop ideas thoughtfully.

Pupils are able to talk at length about a narrative, presenting a balanced view and justifying their opinion. Pupils are able to adapt talk to suit the purpose. Pupils are able to describe events and convey their opinions clearly. Pupils use some of the features of Standard English, vocabulary and grammar.

Pupils can talk in a way that engages the attention and interest of listeners through variation of vocabulary and expression. Use Standard English to explain, explore or justify an idea in formal situations.

Pupils can talk confidently and listen discriminatingly in a range of contexts. Pupils can make a formal presentation in Standard English, using appropriate devices. Pupils can change the mood, tone and pace of delivery for particular effect

In individual extended contributions, pupils exhibit confidence and fluency in talk in a range of contexts. They use Standard English vocabulary and grammar effectively in a range of situations. Pupils demonstrate a sensitive awareness of listeners, adapting vocabulary and expression to their needs and to the context



Pupils usually listen carefully during discussions, making contributions and asking questions that are responsive to others’ ideas.

Pupils can listen carefully and make relevant notes during discussion, making contributions and asking questions that are responsive to others’ ideas.

Pupils can listen attentively in a range of formal and informal contexts. They can attend sufficiently to what others say in group and class discussion to engage with their contributions, Pupils identify and recall the main points of a talk, reading or television programme.

Pupils can sustain attention and listen analytically in a range of formal and informal contexts. They can listen attentively to others and build constructively on their spoken contributions by clarifying understanding and developing ideas. Pupils identify and comment on the main points of a talk, reading or television programme.

Pupils listen and respond with discrimination and sensitivity. They attend to, analyse and comment critically on the main points of a talk, reading or television programme.



Pupils are beginning to listen attentively in a variety of different situations.

Through relevant comments and questions, pupils are

beginning to show that they have listened carefully.

Through relevant comments and questions, pupils are

able to show that they have listened carefully.

Pupils are able to listen attentively in an increasing range of contexts.


Pupils can take on the different roles needed within a group, e.g. leader, reporter, scribe and mentor.

Pupils can listen, comment, question and respond to what is said by other children and adults.

Pupils can plan and manage a group task. Pupils can use the language of decision- making, e.g. consequences, alternatives, compromise.

Pupils can take the lead and support others in groups.

Pupils can understand and use a variety of ways to criticise.

Pupils can respond to criticism, using appropriate language and behaviours, e.g. seeking clarification, adjusting ideas. Pupils can vary their language according to the different context and purpose of use.

Pupils contribute to discussion, using talk as a tool for clarifying ideas, asking questions and making contributions that take account of the views of others

Pupils take different roles effectively in discussion and make different contributions, Pupils ask questions and make contributions that clarify understanding and refine ideas.

Pupils take a variety of roles in discussion, responding discriminatingly to what others say. When discussing, negotiating and making decisions, pupils demonstrate the capacity to make constructive contributions, to challenge and resolve conflicts.







Pupils use a growing variety of drama techniques, e.g. conscience corridor, to deepen the role or understanding of the situation. Pupils can choose the appropriate vocabulary and movement.

Pupils work confidently in groups using a range of drama techniques to explore situations and devise dramas for different purposes. Pupils can establish a character with control over movement and voice.

Pupils can explore and identify issues and relationships in their drama work. Pupils can sustain a defined character for a reasonable amount of time. Pupils can select and use a range of available technical resources for dramatic effects, e.g. C.D. player, lighting, overhead or data projector. Pupils can write scripts or short plays using appropriate theatre conventions.



Pupils can act out existing scripts and improvised dramas, creating characters that are different from them. Pupils can perform plays to engage the interest of an audience in school.

Pupils can write and perform simple scripts using dramatic conventions demonstrating an understanding of some theatre conventions.

Pupils can organise a short, clear and coherent performance for an audience, using an increasing range of different drama techniques and theatre conventions in the plays they present.


Both in and out of role, pupils can comment thoughtfully on the drama and suggest ways of improving it. Pupils can reflect on the action taken by characters in the drama and consider alternate responses.

Pupils can reflect on and evaluate their own and other’s work, suggest improvements and comment on how intended effects have been achieved. Pupils can discuss themes or issues in the drama and the ways that they were presented. Pupils can demonstrate an awareness of some theatre traditions from different times and places, e.g. Greek or Tudor theatre.

Pupils can compare different interpretations of the same text, e.g. extracts from 2 videos of the same play. Pupils can discuss ways that ideas are presented and representted, how plots are developed and characters are portrayed.


are developed and characters are portrayed. Lit/08.06/JPM School Improvement Service Working in Partnership with

School Improvement Service Working in Partnership with Lincolnshire County Council