The Whole School Curriculum
The new curriculum in 2014 has enabled us to re-evaluate the curriculum at High Ercall Primary School, establishing what is important to our school and community, alongside ensuring coverage of the statutory requirements.
Through working together in Key Stages, and as a whole school, we can ensure that the curriculum is exciting, real and relevant for our children, and teach the important spiritual, moral, social and cultural values across school.
In their first year of school, your child will follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. This is the same curriculum as your child followed at nursery. This allows for continuity during their first year of school. There are seven areas of learning and your child’s class teacher will plan learning opportunities to fulfil all these areas of learning by the time they leave Reception.
Teaching Early Reading and Writing
Your child will be taught Letters and Sounds, which is a high quality phonics programme which will teach your child how the alphabet works for reading and spelling by fostering their speaking and listening skills and developing their knowledge of how to apply the sounds they learn to their writing and to decode words for their reading. There are 6 phases of Letters and Sounds which your child is expected to achieve by the end of Year 2.
Year 1 Phonic Screening
In the Summer Term of Year 1 your child will sit a national phonics’ screening test which is administered nationally.
Year 1 – Year 6
All children from Year 1 to Year 6 are taught the Key Skills which are outlined in the National curriculum for Key Stage and Key Stage 2, which was updated in 2014. The subjects are; English, Mathematics, Science, ICT, History, Geography, Art, Design and Music, and Physical Education. For each of these subjects a description of what your child will be taught is detailed in a termly newsletter.
In addition to these subjects your child will be taught Religious Education, Personal, Social and Health Education, and French is taught to all children across Key Stage 2.
Key Stage One children are taught for a minimum of 21 hours per week and Key Stage Two children for 23.5 hours per week.
How Is The Curriculum Taught?
Across the school, there are 3 key drivers which are fundamental to our curriculum across school. These are:
- Personal and social wellbeing. This is an intrinsic part of our curriculum, underpinned by the 5R: resilient, reflective, responsible, resourceful and respect. Through the PSHE curriculum, and in all learning the children are taught how to apply these skills to both their learning and themselves as individuals and as part of our school community.
- Active learning. We want all our learning to be active, motivating and engaging for all pupils. Active learning can be through the children learning and finding out together, or it can be through Forest schools, trips and visitors in school.
- Community. In all our learning we instil in the children a sense of community – from the school community, to engaging parents and the local community, but also ensuring children have a wider sense of community from a national perspective, engaging with British Values, but also a global perspective. Developing a sense of community pervades through the curriculum in many subjects, including PSHE, Geography, art and dance.
Each theme is planned to embed these drivers at an appropriate age for the children.
Information on the school curriculum
Each term your child’s curriculum will be based on a theme which will match your child’s interests and age. There will be opportunities for your child to have an input into the curriculum and also for them to experience first-hand experiences through educational visits and practical activities. Your child will bring home a class newsletter each term, detailing aspects of the theme.
Religious Education is provided in accordance with current legislation and the recommendations of the Local Authority. We encourage children to develop a caring and tolerant attitude towards people with beliefs different from their own. We introduce the children to all world religions, with a secure understanding of Christianity. Assemblies, in accordance with current requirements, contain a broadly Christian act of worship. We believe it important to support parents in developing the spiritual and moral values of their child and we respect the beliefs and faith of all families. If parents wish to withdraw their children from worship or R.E., we ask that they visit the school to discuss our policy. They will be given opportunities to be involved in appropriate alternative activities. Reverend S Williams is a regular visitor in school, and leads weekly assemblies.
Relationships and Sex Education
Governors have agreed that children will be taught relationships and sex education from Reception to Year 6 based on the Living and Growing programmes. Your child will be taught age appropriate content to ensure that your child has a realistic understanding of their developing and changing bodies. Aspects of Sex Education are contained within the Science National Curriculum Programmes of Study, for example developing a knowledge of the parts of the body and how they work. These are included within our normal curriculum planning. Should you wish to withdraw your child from the school’s Sex Education Programme we ask you to come into school to discuss our policy.
How Children Are Assessed
Children are assessed on their work as part of their daily activity in the classroom. This includes responding to the teacher’s marking and opportunities to be involved in peer and self-assessment. Teachers are always in a position to describe the progress that the children in the class are making.
In addition to this kind of continuous teacher assessment there is also a more formal assessment that schools are required to carry out as part of the National Curriculum. This comes at the end of Year 1, with the Phonics’ Screening test, at the end of Key Stage One (when your child is seven, in Year Two) and Key Stage Two (when your child is eleven, in Year Six). At these times, assessments will be made on your child's progress in Reading, Writing and Maths through assessments made by the teacher and by Standard Assessment Tasks taken by your child in the Summer term. The results of these assessments are shared with you.