Early Years Foundation stage
Our Early Years Foundation Stage consists of seven areas of learning. Three of these areas are the prime areas of learning and they are:
- Communication and language
- Physical Development
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
And four specific areas of learning:
- Understanding the World
- Expressive Arts and Design
Our teachers provide an exciting environment (indoors and outdoors) where children can engage in both child-initiated activities and teacher-led activities in order to develop their learning in these seven areas. We use the Development Matters Framework to help us plan for and assess these activities.
Key Stages 1 & 2
We believe that happy children, who feel emotionally settled and want to come to school, learn best. We nurture and support children and their families to ensure we achieve this aim. Our Curriculum meets the requirements and ambitions of the national curriculum and ensures that children meet their age-related expectations. Our curriculum is broad and balanced and provides the knowledge and skills that pupils need for later life. It builds towards clear end points, and it’s clear what pupils need to know and be able to do to reach them. We plan and sequence our curriculum and build on what has come before. We fill in any gaps in knowledge and skills. Our curriculum offer is inclusive for all pupils and is designed at an age appropriate level.
We provide a rich range of experiences that enhance learning, including lots of opportunities to use the outside environment. These experiences promote equal opportunities and raise aspirations and enhance wellbeing and health. We have organised the curriculum and our assessment criteria to enable children to achieve, to make links across curriculum areas and retain the knowledge and skills they need to succeed. We take a holistic approach to learning and supporting the development of the whole child. Our goal is to equip children with the skills and mindset to thrive in the modern world, to be compassionate members of society and have a lifelong love of learning.
Our intention is that children:
- Read as soon as possible to access learning across the curriculum.
- Acquire a wide vocabulary that will unlock understanding over a broad range of subjects.
- Develop number fluency that will scaffold and support their problem solving and reasoning skills.
- Develop resilience and be prepared to persevere and extend their own thinking.
- Have a good understanding of the faiths and cultures of others and some of the broader issues around this.
- Develop tolerance and respect for others regardless of race, faith or culture.
- Practice our school values and develop healthy social and emotional attitudes.
- Have well developed local and wider historical and geographical knowledge.
- Gain the scientific knowledge, understanding and skills expected for their age.
- Take an interest and become involved in a broad range of environmental issues.
- Experience a range of musical and sporting opportunities both in and out of school
- Be well prepared for the next stage in their journey of learning by building on the intellectual capital the children have already gained.
- Have a voice and see the impact of their opinions.
Children have to be keen to come to school and eager to learn before deep learning can occur. We work hard to promote pupil voice through our School Council and Headteacher Tea Parties. Children are able to comment on the curriculum and how we can improve it. We support our most vulnerable children through our nurture programme using Sunshine Circles. We expect good behaviour and promote Values Education to ensure positive attitudes and a growth mindset ethos.
We believe the curriculum should be rich in knowledge, challenging, progressive and balanced in terms of skills and content. We enable children to gain the skills they need to access the curriculum and gain a full understanding of the content and to retain this using distributive practices and dual coding.
We recognise the value of quality texts and appreciate the intellectual capital they can add to learning. Our English curriculum is taught through quality texts. We prioritise the acquisition of a wide vocabulary across all subjects as the basis to support an accumulative understanding of the areas we teach.
We teach maths to promote Mastery which is included in our curriculum intent document. Our foundation subjects are led by an enquiry-based approach using the creative curriculum, which encourages children to consider and question. We raise the profile of our foundation subjects by having a curriculum day for each subject area.
Our curriculum is broken down into steps that indicate the expectations of knowledge and skills to be attained for each stage of the primary phase. Progression, balance and consistency is ensured through comprehensive curriculum mapping which is overseen by class teachers and subject leaders.
Our curriculum provides children with a range of experiences in and out of school which add depth to their learning and provide cultural capital. We do this with a topic based approach which covers geography, history, art and design technology.
Impact of the Curriculum
Our main purpose is to provide children with an education that will prepare them well for the future. We ensure that whatever their starting point and whatever the barriers to learning, we enable our children to achieve the best possible outcomes by considering Age Related Expectations and the children’s individual potential.
The impact of our focus on Values Education and restorative practices is shown by children’s attitudes to each other, to adults in school, to their conduct on school visits and trips and also by the way in which they approach their learning. Our children are often complimented on their behaviour in the wider community and we pride ourselves on this.
Our school is a happy community and through our Values Education and the ethos and culture of our school, we see Tolerance and Respect demonstrated on a daily basis.
Some of our children and their families have difficulties, however through our nurture and pastoral support, we provide advice and practical help that impacts positively on the wellbeing of the family and the child.
Equality Act 2010
With reference to the Equality Act 2010 and SEND Regulations 2014, children with SEND are supported in class with additional support/equipment as required. Their work is differentiated to enable them to work at their own level of ability in order to help them to flourish.
Curriculum information is sent to parents at the beginning of each term.
We offer our children the opportunity to participate in Forest School. This has a significant part to play in supporting children’s mental health and general wellbeing.
Forest School promotes the holistic development of all children, fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners. It offers our children the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to our environment and to themselves. The activities also link to learning in the classroom where appropriate.
Children learn to assess, appreciate and take risks, making sensible, informed decisions about how to tackle the activities and experiences they encounter. They learn to be self-sufficient and take care of themselves, which boosts their confidence and self-esteem.