Primary schools are expected to teach a new National Curriculum from September 2014. Here at Moulton CEVC Primary School, we have planned our curriculum to ensure that it not only meets the new requirements, but that it is also personalised to meet the needs of our pupils and the context of our school.
Our core learning expectations are that children:
- Love learning!
- Play an active role in their learning
- Feel safe to make mistakes
- Feel valued and have their achievements celebrated
- Take responsibility for their learning
- Make connections in their learning
- Are prepared for life in Modern Britain
- Leave us confident and ready to transfer to secondary school
Early years foundation stage
When children start their school life at Moulton Primary School, they join our Reception Class. Children in our Reception Class follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework which comprises 7 areas: Communication and language, Physical development, Personal, social and emotional development, Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the world and Expressive arts and design. Children in the Reception Class are supported to become active learners in a curriculum which is designed to be challenging and enjoyable. We aim to develop the whole child and to ensure that every child feels happy and safe. We recognise that when a child feels happy and safe, they are ready to learn. We use the children’s natural curiosity as an inspiration for learning and we provide a range of stimulating environments and contexts. We plan for guided play, structured activities, adult led activities and child initiated exploration. Children are encouraged to think and to talk about the world around them; we provide a language–rich environment where books, storytelling and reading are vital to our children’s well-being. Children are individuals who develop and gain knowledge, concepts and skills at varying rates. We work closely with parents and carers to ensure that a child’s first experience of school is a positive one.
Key stage 1 and Key stage 2
The curriculum for children in Year 1 to Year 6 covers the following subjects: English (incorporating writing, reading and communication), Mathematics, Science, Art and design, Computing, Design and technology, Geography, History, Languages (optional in Key Stage 1), Music, Personal, social and health education (PSHE), Physical education (PE), and Religious education (RE). All children will be taught English and mathematics every day. We aim to provide learning opportunities where knowledge and skills in one subject are taught and applied alongside or within another subject. This is called cross-curricular learning. Each year group has a different learning theme or ‘topic’ every half term. The theme provides a context for meaningful cross-curricular learning and may incorporate a number of subjects. We ensure that every subject is taught during the year; not all subjects are taught in every half term. Every theme begins with a ‘Sparking Start’ (an exciting launch into learning) and ends with a ‘Fabulous Finish’ (something to work towards as an end point for the learning).
We have identified three key strengths we want to develop in our pupils:
- Enterprise: - working as a team for the benefit of others
- Possibilities: - experiencing things they wouldn’t normally experience
- Enquiry: - being interested and asking questions
We have planned opportunities for developing these strengths in each of our half termly themes. Our half termly curriculum overviews are shared with parents and can be found on our website.
Communication – speaking and listening
We aim for children to become confident communicators and responsive listeners. We provide opportunities for them to:
- work in a range of situations with different audiences and activities;
- develop the ability to ask questions, explain, present ideas, give and understand instructions;
- plan and discuss;
- tell stories;
- join in exploratory and collaborative play.
Older children will be involved in:
- preparing presentations;
- reflecting on the effectiveness of their speaking;
- developing a wider vocabulary.
As children become more confident, we:
- provide opportunities to develop an awareness of the views of others;
- help them support their point of view with evidence;
- support them to listen carefully to what other speakers have to say;
- encourage them to reason, predict, recall and express their feelings eloquently.
Reading and phonics
We encourage children to learn to read for enjoyment and for information.
Reading is taught through synthetic phonics, whole word recognition and reading for meaning; it is taught systematically in response to ongoing assessment and individual need. A phonological approach to reading is implemented throughout the school. A variety of books to read for pleasure and information are provided in classrooms and in our School Library. There are reading activities in every class, every day.
Our book bands
We teach reading through a ‘banded’ reading system which is made up of a number of different reading schemes e.g. Oxford Reading Tree and Big Cat Phonics. Different levels of books are banded in a particular colour. Children begin by reading books in the pink band and progress through the book bands, building on their reading experience until they have acquired the essential skills to be a secure reader. Books in the early colour bands have few words and are often phonically decodable.
At first children learn:
- that print conveys meaning, through a variety of structured reading schemes;
- the phonetic aspects of English;
- to read a wide variety of materials;
- to love reading through the enjoyment of sharing.
As the children progress through the colour bands, the texts become more challenging and the children become more confident and fluent in their reading. We ensure that children experience a variety of fiction and non-fiction texts. We encourage children to reflect on their reading and express their reading preferences. Children experience a variety of books and characters, including fiction and non-fiction as they develop their reading preferences.
As children develop as readers they will:
- become capable of reading for meaning and making informed guesses based on visual, contextual and phonic clues;
- learn how to make inferences and deductions and develop an understanding of the structure of texts;
- be taught to reflect upon what they read, justifying their reactions by reference to the text;
- respond to books in terms of ideas, as well as such things as character and plot;
- develop the skills needed to retrieve information from texts by identifying key points;
- develop an awareness about the differences between fact and fiction.
Teachers will make decisions about when children move to the next book band level as a result of their ongoing assessments.
Every class has daily Sustained, Quiet Uninterrupted Reading Time (SQUIRT). We promote the importance of reading through our Star Reader initiative. Any child can become a Star Reader by reading at least six times a week at home. We encourage children and parents to record and respond to their reading through the child’s Reading Record Book.
We want children to develop their writing skills so at they can:
- communicate and share
- organise and plan
- develop ideas and information
- enjoy the process of writing for a purpose.
Through a range of experiences children become aware that writing has a number of purposes and this is reflected in the style used. As children develop their writing skills they will be taught to
- proof read
- review the art of presentation.
We teach writing through the Talk for Writing strategy. Talk for Writing is based on the principles of how children learn. It is powerful because it enables children to imitate the language they need for a particular topic or genre orally before reading and analysing it and then writing their own version This approach ensures that children become confident and independent writers who develop ideas and a strong and growing vocabulary.
We encourage children to collect exciting vocabulary in School and at home and record it in their Magpie Books.
Spelling is taught through a range of strategies, building on phonic knowledge.
Handwriting is taught as an integral part of English activities.
Mathematics is a skill that is necessary for adult life and therefore forms an essential part of every school’s curriculum. Mathematics also underpins and supports other subjects such as science and technology. Mathematics also has an inherent interest and appeal for many people who gain great satisfaction from solving puzzles and problems!
We aim to develop:
- a positive attitude towards mathematics
- a deep understanding of mathematical concepts
- an appreciation of the creative aspects of mathematics and an awareness of its aesthetic appeal
- an ability to think clearly and logically
- the ability and confidence to use mathematics beyond the classroom, in practical everyday situations
- perseverance when investigating a problem
- an appreciation of mathematical pattern and relationship
- an ability to use number and computation skills with speed and accuracy
We want all children to be able to:
- understand basic concepts and the relationships between concepts
- access a variety of representations, both external and internal
- communicate mathematics confidently in oral and written forms
- remember basic number facts, mathematical vocabulary and notation
- conjecture, and convince others of their ideas
- gather, present and interpret data effectively
- use calculators and computers confidently
- use the mathematics they have learned in a range of contexts
- develop perseverance and commitment through mathematics
- take pride in their presentation and their achievements
- identify and celebrate the achievements of others
Mathematics curriculum content and progression
At Moulton CEVC Primary School, the National Curriculum is used as a basis for all our maths planning and assessment. We ensure there is progression and continuity from one year to the next; with children building upon previous years’ learning.
Mathematics in the early years
Mathematical development at this stage depends on becoming confident and competent in learning and using key skills. This area of learning includes counting, sorting, matching, seeking patterns, making connections, recognising relationships and working with numbers, shapes, space and measures. Mathematical understanding is developed through stories, songs, games and imaginative play, to enable children to enjoy using and experimenting with numbers.
Mathematics in Key Stage 1 (Year 1 and Year 2)
Maths learning in Key Stage 1 is planned in line with the National Curriculum supplemented by the Suffolk Empty Number Line materials and continues the development begun in the EYFS.
Mathematics in Key Stage 2 (Year 3, 4, 5 and 6)
In Key Stage 2 the fourth area of Handling Data is added to the NC Attainment Targets, and work continues in the three areas begun in KS1. Children receive approximately 60 minutes of maths every day in a designated lesson. Cross-curricular links are made whenever possible.
We encouraged all our pupils to climb our Times Table Mountain. As children learn their times tables, they achieve a colour level on the mountain. All our children are striving for Gold!
We aim to create an atmosphere that will encourage children to enjoy mathematics, and develop a lifelong interest in the subject.
Science is taught through topics building on previous learning, ensuring continuity and progression within the curriculum. Emphasis is placed on first-hand experiences, identifying, questioning and investigating. Children are encouraged to develop their thinking skills throughout their learning.
Children will be taught to
- use appropriate apparatus and techniques
- relate scientific knowledge to every day life
- communicate their findings
- be aware of the hazards and risks of working with living things and materials.
Computing skills are taught throughout the School. Children have the opportunity to experience a wide range of software and programmes and apply their knowledge and skills across other curriculum areas. All classes have access to the School’s Computer Suite and laptops.
Our History curriculum teaches an awareness of the past and the ways in which it is different from the present. The children learn about everyday life in the past, the lives of famous men and women and some major historical events. Children in Key Stage 2 (Years 3, 4, 5 and 6) are taught significant events in Britain’s past, aspects of local history and about Ancient Civilisations
Geography learning is planned to help children develop an understanding of the world around them. We use our local environment and a range of educational visits to support the development of children’s geographical skills.
Music plays a very important part in the life of our school. From the beginning of their school life, children learn to enjoy music and to take part in individual, group and whole school performances with confidence. They learn to sing, to create, respond and appraise music. We provide many opportunities in school and in the wider school community for children to celebrate their musical achievements and to perform to others. Peripatetic instrumental teachers provide tuition for children in Key Stage 2.
ART and DESIGN
Children’s understanding and enjoyment of art, craft and design is developed through a wide range of activities and materials such as paint, print, clay and textiles. They are also encouraged to develop an understanding of and respond to the work of artists, crafts people and designers.
DT involves a great deal of practical work. Children have the opportunity to use a wide variety of materials and appropriate tools. They are encouraged to design, plan and choose suitable material and to evaluate their models. This involves many skills learned in other curriculum areas.
PHYSICAL EDUCATION (PE)
We support the physical and emotional well-being of our children through the provision of a PE curriculum which includes games, gymnastics, dance, swimming and athletics. We also provide a number of extra-curricular sports clubs. Children have the opportunity to participate in a number of intra-school and inter-school sporting competitions. We have a large sports field, an all-weather sports pitch and an outdoor heated swimming pool.
PERSONAL, SOCIAL and HEALTH EDUCATION (PSHE)
Our PSHE curriculum teaches children to
- value their achievements
- develop a healthy and safer lifestyle
- develop positive relationships with others
- respect differences between people, either in a multi cultural or personal sense
Our children learn to
- develop their self confidence
- develop social and morally responsible behaviour both in the classroom and beyond
- become involved in the community
- play an active role as members of a democratic society
- interact with the world of work
SEX and RELATIONSHIPS EDUCATION (SRE)
Sex and relationship education is taught as part of science and PSHE. We work closely with the School Nursing Team to deliver an age-appropriate SRE curriculum, focusing on relationships, respect for others, bodily changes and making positive choices.
RELIGIOUS EDUCATION (RE)
RE is taught with reference to the Suffolk County Council agreed syllabus. Our close links with the local Church, enable the RE curriculum to be relevant and real for our children. RE learning and daily Collective Worship are linked by a different Christian value every half-term. Worship is an important part of our school day; it fosters a sense of community and provides the opportunity for quiet reflection. We share stories, poems, prayers and songs; we also have visitors who lead our worship. We hold regular services in our village church including Harvest Thanksgivings, Christingles and Easter Celebrations. Parents who wish to withdraw their children from Religious Education should contact the Headteacher
Our Languages curriculum currently focuses on the teaching of French. We aim to broaden the children’s oracy and literacy so that by the time they leave at the end of Year 6, children can confidently give presentations in French and write short texts without a model. We seek ways to embed French culture and language throughout the curriculum.