National Curriculum (Years 1-6)
At our school the National Curriculum is statutory for Years 1-6. It lays out the range of subjects we must teach and sets the standards pupils are expected to reach at the end of each key stage of learning. Our Schools Curriculum incorporates the National Curriculum and goes beyond it. We have adapted and extended the National Curriculum to meet the particular needs of our pupils and families. It is a curriculum designed to work for all in our community.
Innovatively, we do not end the Early Years approach to education in Reception. We run it through Year 1. We teach the content of the Year 1 National Curriculum, but do so in a child-centered, play based way. We have found this to be very effective in raising attainment for Year 1 pupils, whilst supporting their development in an age-appropriate way. Our Year 1 children love learning in our school! To find out more, see our Early Years Curriculum Page.
From Year 2 onwards, our School Curriculum is designed to:
- Teach our pupils to learn well: Learning happens in a relationship between teacher, pupil and the tasks children engage with. We see the quality of teaching and depth of challenge in our classes as fundamental. So too are the attitudes and behaviours pupils bring to learning. The extent and quality of pupils’ engagement in class is crucial - the learning happens in their brains and bodies. Our curriculum enables children to understand what effective learning is, understand themselves as learners and develop their capacity to make the most of learning in school.
- Teach our pupils how to lead happy, healthy, constructive lives, in which they can aspire and experience success: Wellbeing, in terms of both physical and mental health, is essential for effective engagement with school and wider life. Our pupils need to feel secure in themselves and their environment and relaxed but alert to learn. They need to believe in themselves as successful people and aim high in order to make great progress. We create a nurturing, happy, organised environment in which our pupils can thrive. We teach them about wellbeing and how they can be happy, healthy people.
- Ensure broad and balanced knowledge of the world: The National Curriculum is an entitlement and we ensure all pupils access it fully and well throughout their time at our schools. We provide wide-ranging and coherent knowledge across the curriculum, to equip our pupils for success in secondary school and their adult lives. We aim to ensure a breadth of experience and knowledge that closes gaps in cultural capital between different groups of pupils. We want our pupils to learn about a broad range of possibilities in their lives, so they can aspire with purpose and ambition. Pupils need opportunity to develop lines of personal interest and expertise. We provide a broad, coherent and structured curriculum, that aims at sustained mastery for all and a greater depth of understanding, in all subjects, for those who are capable.
- Ensure high levels of competence in the core subjects of English and maths: Our curriculum enables our pupils to become sophisticated and flexible users of English and maths, as well as highly competent readers and writers. Effective use of English and fluent mathematical knowledge are prerequisites for success across the curriculum. In particular:
- We think largely in language. The ability of pupils to consider broad and abstract concepts is dependent upon both their vocabulary and the sophistication of their grammar.
- The ability to understand the ideas of others and communicate one's own thoughts is central to learning in school. The quality of collaboration in our classes is dependent on pupils’ standards of English.
- Learning in school and more broadly in life is hugely dependent on the ability to read. A very large amount of information in our society is communicated in written form.
- Numerical fluency is core knowledge required by all subjects across the curriculum. Maths develops the skills of reasoning, deduction, problem-solving, representation and logical connection, which are crucial thinking tools for wider learning.
- Teach our pupils to live well in a diverse world, as confident, responsible citizens: Diversity is a defining characteristic of our community. Our children need to learn how to live and work positively in the context of difference. They need to understand how lines of social inequality and marginalisation impact on them, as well as how to challenge these in constructive and responsible ways. We aim to be a culturally competent organisation and teach our children to be culturally competent people, with a mature self-identity, as well as understanding and respect for others.