Each year the Governing Body produces a Curriculum Statement. At Bagthorpe Primary School, our School Aims and Core Values underpin our curriculum. They are as follows:
We aim to make our school a happy place where we all learn for life, grow together and work hard to achieve our personal best, in an environment where every person matters. We aim for excellence in achievement and personal development by having a curriculum, which is about real learning and by keeping our 7 Core Values at the centre of all we do. They are:
We aim to do what is good and to be positive in everything, showing respect and care for others, across cultures, distance and generations; our environment, both near and far, and ourselves, our health and well-being.
We seek to do our personal best without showing off and we encourage others to achieve their best without being critical or jealous of their efforts.
We look after each other and care for those who are in difficulty and who are hurting, recognising that the world does not exist for us alone.
We always tell the truth and can be trusted to be honest, to say what we mean and mean what we say.
We accept responsibility for the things that we say, think and do understanding that actions and choices have consequences.
We do the right thing, even when it’s hard; we stand up for the weak and we are brave in facing our fears and finding ways to defeat them.
We work hard and never, ever, give up because this is essential if we are to achieve anything worthwhile.
Our Curriculum Aims and Key Principles:
Our curriculum promotes children’s independence, resilience and confidence, by building on our 7 Core Values and Learning to Learn principles. Our curriculum:
- is inclusive, so that every child can achieve their potential
- reflects children’s interests and their world, to make learning meaningful and purposeful
- is interactive and fun, to develop children’s creativity and collaboration
To achieve this, we have adopted 7 Key Principles. We will:
- use the stimulus of artefacts, texts, activities, visits and the arts to bring topics alive
- provide as many memorable first-hand experiences as possible
- develop local, national and global multi-cultural awareness, every term
- study famous people each term, either as part of the main topic or mini-topic work
- make the outdoor environment an integral part of provision
- take the school into the community and bring the community into the school
- promote health and safety including e-safety, in all areas of the curriculum
Preparing for the New Curriculum
During the academic year 2013/2014, all subject leaders conducted work scrutinies and pupil interviews to determine the content that worked well in our school, within their own subject areas. In addition, class teachers questioned pupils about the topics and literacy books they had particularly enjoyed – and the way that they preferred to learn. The results of this research, together with the requirements of the new National Curriculum, were used as the basis to inform our long term planning.
Long Term Planning
Due to mixed year groups, the topic cycle at Foundation and KS1 spans three years, whilst a single year topic cycle is adopted at KS2.
Skills, knowledge and understanding are taught in the context of a termly over-arching theme, or topic. Occasionally, shorter mini-topics, unrelated to the main topic, are used to inject variety and also ensure the fulfilment of all statutory requirements. Subjects, for example geography, history or science, lead some topics, whilst others are led by inspiring literacy. We always give Literacy a main focus, either where the topic is led by a quality text – or that there are plenty of opportunities to write in specific genres following knowledge learnt in other subjects.
In order to provide meaningful learning experiences for the children, we teach in cross-curricular blocks, delivering literacy where it best fits in the cycle. This gives capacity to plan whole days for practical work, which pupils said they enjoyed and learned more from. Children also said they would sometimes like the chance to learn more in depth about specific elements of a topic. This structure allows us to offer this opportunity for pupils to read widely around a subject, whilst encouraging a thirst for knowledge and opening up wider opportunities for independent learning.
Teachers ensure that over a half term, Literacy and Numeracy are given the equivalent of an hour a day, but this will mainly be delivered in blocks. Additionally, several elements of literacy, such as reading, phonics, handwriting and SPaG are timetabled on a daily or weekly basis. Currently, Maths usually takes the form of a daily lesson, though we will are considering how we can adopt a more cross-curricular approach in this area too.
Whole School Themes and Special Days
Each term, there is a whole-school focus to enable us to look in detail at multi-cultural issues; religions; famous people; artists etc. These will include: entering competitions; developing projects with external providers (such as Take One Picture); celebrating religious festivals; national days of interest or developing topics suggested by the pupils.
We regularly hold special days, invite visitors to our classes and participate in visits. Our termly Let’s GLOW! days (Let’s Grow and Learn Outside in Wellies!) have been a termly feature for 7 years and we regularly invite other schools to bring a class to join in for the day.
Subject Specific Information
The teaching of Literacy is structured from the National Curriculum and we use a wide range of materials to enhance the delivery of quality first teaching. We also adopt a cross-curricular approach to literacy, which means that opportunities are taken to make meaningful links with other curriculum areas. For example, this could be writing a set of instructions in Design Technology, or writing a diary entry or letter from a particular character in History. Pupils in Foundation and KS1 are taught phonics, using the Letters and Sounds framework and their attainment and progress is monitored on a tracking grid. Children’s progress in literacy is monitored through termly Pupil Progress Meetings.
The teaching of Numeracy is structured from the National Curriculum. A range of additional resources, including the online resource ‘Mathletics,’ are provided to enhance mathematical learning. Significant investment has been made to ensure a plentiful supply of practical equipment to support children’s mathematical learning is available. Children’s progress in numeracy is monitored through termly Pupil Progress Meetings.
The teaching of Science has been planned to ensure that the relevant scientific skills for each year group are taught through a series of topics. Scientific Enquiry is a particularly important element, which is taught throughout the school each term. During Year 6, all areas are revised to ensure that pupils are familiar with each topic in preparation for end of Key Stage Assessments.
Information Communication Technology (ICT) teaching is structured from the Nottinghamshire Framework for ICT, which ensures a progression of skills as children move through the primary phase. An emphasis is always places upon the meaningful and contextualised application of the children’s skills.
Religious Education is provided by following the Nottinghamshire Agreed Syllabus “RE for All”. Through the use of the Syllabus we use RE to enable our pupils to gain insights and knowledge to equip them as responsible members in our society. The Syllabus we follow encourages pupils to discover more about religion and world views on a range of topics. They are encouraged to express ideas and insights into key questions which face all human beings as we travel through life.
The three fold aims of RE in Nottinghamshire will ensure that our pupils:
- know and understand a range of religions and world views which will allow them to recognise diversity which exists in our society.
- can express ideas and insights about the nature, significance and the impact of religions and world views as they develop their own personal views on a range of issues
- develop and use skills which will assist them to engage seriously with religions and world views
By following the Agreed Syllabus, RE will contribute to a whole range of school priorities. Their study will promote spiritual, cultural, social and moral development, as well as enabling them to consider British Values such as tolerance and respect for other who hold different world views.
If you would like to know more about the Nottinghamshire Agreed Syllabus a copy is available for you to read in the school.
An emphasis is given to making work meaningful and adopting a cross-curricular approach wherever possible. In addition to this, children may be taken on visits to see other places of worship and visiting groups and workshops help provide first-hand learning experiences.
Foundation Subjects are delivered by following a four-year rolling programme. Curriculum design is such that a broad range of topics is provided, upon which a range of skills, knowledge and concepts are developed in order to make learning meaningful.
Our Foundation Stage is directed by the guidance provided in the EYFS documentation. From 2012, this involves 7 key areas, against which all children are measured on entry – and then throughout Foundation Stage 2.
Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) is delivered mainly through class assemblies, but is also an ongoing theme throughout many lessons, in much the same way that Social, Moral, Spiritual and Cultural dimensions are regularly explored.
Sex and Relationships Education (SRE) is delivered in accordance with our SRE policy, which has been agreed within the local Family of Schools.
Drugs Education is taught mainly through the Drug Abuse Resistance Education training, known as D.A.R.E. This is undertaken during Year 6, usually during the summer term.
Curriculum Enrichment is provided by running a wide range of educational visits and experiences. We regularly take groups of children on educational visits and we equally value the many opportunities we have to welcome visitors into our school.
Collective Worship is carried out every day. This is organised by class, key-stage or whole school.
Through all of this, we aim to provide the children with motivating experiences, through which they will fulfill their potential and be given memories to last a lifetime.