All aspects of our curriculum provision have been devised with the National Curriculum in mind. We have ensured that all the statutory requirements are fully adhered to and that all pupils are fully prepared to meet the requirements of the National Curriculum tests in English and mathematics at years 2 and 6. A strong command of English and mathematics is a vital foundation for the whole curriculum. We prioritise depth before breadth so that all pupils secure firm foundations in these core subjects as early as possible.
Literacy is a vital way of communicating in the academy, in public life and internationally. It enables children to learn how to express themselves creatively and imaginatively and to communicate with others effectively. In studying literacy pupils develop skills in speaking, listening, reading, writing (including punctuation and grammar) spelling and handwriting. Where possible these skills are developed through linking the teaching of English with other curriculum areas. Our literacy programme includes: phonics/spelling, handwriting, grammar and daily literacy lessons.
In maths teaching we aim to equip pupils with tools such as logical reasoning, problem solving skills and the ability to think in abstract ways. Throughout the academy we teach the following areas of study; using and applying maths, number and algebra, shape space and measures and data handling. Our mathematics programme which is based on the Singapore maths approach, focuses on mastery for all and includes a daily maths meeting lesson. Where classes do not follow the Mathematics Mastery approach, teachers plan and deliver using National Primary Strategy objectives, supported by a range of resources.
Science stimulates and excites pupils’ curiosity about phenomena and events in the world around them. Science links direct practical experience with ideas so it can engage learners at many levels. During the teaching of science an emphasis is placed on the teaching of scientific skills such as predicting, estimating, measuring, fair testing, hypothesising, and drawing conclusions. These skills are taught through a two year cycle of topics: life processes and humans, sound, electricity, light, the earth and beyond, separating materials, grouping materials, forces and motion and green plants and the environment. Science is taught using the Ark science scheme of work, which is based on the Singapore approach.
ICT prepares children to take part in a rapidly changing world in which work and other activities are increasingly transformed by access to varied and developing technology. Through ICT teaching children learn how to store, manipulate, retrieve and present information which may consist of text, numbers, images, sound or other signals. These skills are taught through projects consisting of communicating information, handling information, modelling and control based on the skills progression named above.
Religious Education and Collective Worship
Alongside Christianity children study other major religions including Islam and Judaism. Parents/carers are able to withdraw their child from RE or collective worship but should discuss this with the Headteacher. RE is taught as part of creative curriculum projects.
Art and Design
Art and design provides visual, tactile and sensory experiences and is a unique way of understanding and responding to the world. Children use colour, form, texture, pattern, different materials and processes to communicate what they see, feel and think. They explore ideas and meaning in the work of artists as well as learning how to understand, appreciate and enjoy art. Visits are made to provide firsthand experience of the work of artists. Art and design is taught as part of creative curriculum projects.
Design and Technology
Design and technology (DT) also prepares children to participate in a world of rapidly changing technology. Everything we use in our day-to-day lives – from forks to food and hats to houses – has been designed. Finding out more about how these objects are designed and made helps children to make sense of the world around them. By designing and making their own products, children learn: practical skills, like finding out how things work and making products that are useful and look good and ways of thinking and working, like coming up with ideas, solving problems and working as a team. DT teaching is taught as part of creative curriculum projects.
Geography provokes and answers questions about the natural and human worlds. It develops knowledge of places and environments throughout the world, an understanding of maps, and a range of investigative and problem solving skills both inside and outside the classroom. Geography is taught through a series of themes such as settlement, environmental issues, localities and water. Visits are made to the area surrounding the academy to support work in geography. Geography is taught as part of creative curriculum projects.
In history children explore the past in Britain and the wider world. The key areas developed through the teaching of history are: chronological understanding, knowledge and understanding of events, people and changes in the past, historical interpretation and enquiry and being able to organise and communicate their findings. At both key stages children study local history which is often supported by visits in the local vicinity. History is taught as part of creative curriculum projects.
Weekly Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) lessons will be taught from year 3.
The teaching of music develops children’s ability to listen and appreciate a wide variety of music and to make judgements about musical quality. They are encouraged to take an active role in composing and performing music. As a school we greatly value the contribution music makes to everyday life and strive to involve as many children as possible in musical activities.
Personal, Social and Health Education and Citizenship (PSHE&C)
PSHE&C helps to give pupils the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to lead confident, healthy independent lives and to become informed, active and responsible citizens. SEAL is an integral part of the PSHE&C teaching when children are able to express their views and opinions on concerns they may have. Drugs Education and Sex and Relationship Education are part of PSHE&C teaching. PSHE & C is taught as part of creative curriculum projects.
Physical Education (PE)
In PE children develop their physical competence and confidence as well as their ability to perform in a range of activities such as gymnastics, games, dance, athletics and swimming. PE provides opportunities for children to be creative, competitive and to tackle challenges as individuals, groups and in teams. It also promotes positive attitudes towards active and healthy lifestyles. Children swim at the local pool during Year 3 and Year 4.
The aims and objectives of the curriculum in our school are:
• The provision of a high quality, relevant education for all children.
• To assist all pupils to develop to their full potential by striving to cater for their different strengths, abilities and interests.
• To equip pupils with the skills, knowledge and attitudes necessary for both the present and the future needs of the immediate community and society at large.
• To provide cross curricular links to ensure that pupils’ learning has even greater coherence.
• To embed the application of ICT across the curriculum in order to maximise pupils’ learning and progress.
• Developing ‘masters’ of skills, knowledge and understand to prepare pupils for secondary education.
To commit extra time to English and mathematics so that students can attain proficiency and address the curriculum with confidence.
To focus on depth before breadth.
Opportunities for cross curricular links are identified during medium term planning, especially in English, ICT and the foundation subjects.
Involve our children in decision-making about their learning, allowing children choice and independence which supports:
• Tell me and I forget.
• Show me and I remember.
• Involve me and I understand.
Closely monitor and assess progression in attainment and application of skills.
Help our children to transfer skills between different areas of the curriculum in order to encourage flexibility and resourcefulness and to enable them to use their strengths in one area to overcome challenges in another – to overcome ‘I can’t’ and ‘I don’t get it’.
Ensure our children are active, motivated and enthusiastic learners.
Ensure our children know what they are learning and WHY.
Allow time to engage, reflect and review – including peer and self-evaluation.
Use a wealth of relevant resources – in classrooms, outdoors, in the local community and the wider area, including visits and visitors.
Allow our children to demonstrate their learning in different ways – not always pages in an exercise book but photographs, posters, products, presentations, performances...
‘An effective curriculum would enable all pupils to feel that they are gifted and talented and that they have some flexibility to choose their own learning pathways’ (Ros Wilson).