Our Curriculum Intent
Within our Christian ethos, we nurture pupils to grow into positive, responsible people who can work and cooperate with others, while at the same time developing their knowledge and skills in order to achieve their potential. Our curriculum is designed to:
- encourage pupils to develop lively, enquiring minds by enabling independence
- teach pupils about the developing world, including how their environment and society have changed over time
- help pupils understand Britain's cultural heritage including the contribution made by all ethnic groups
- teach pupils to have an awareness of their own spiritual development and to distinguish right from wrong
- help pupils understand the importance of truth and fairness, so that they grow up committed to equal opportunities for all
- encourage pupils to make informed choices and adopt healthy lifestyles
- enable pupils to be positive citizens by having respect for themselves, attain high self-esteem and to live and work cooperatively with others
- enable pupils to learn skills and knowledge that prepares them for the next stage in their education
The curriculum is taught through discrete subjects and linked topic areas as relevant. In Key Stage Two, where mixed aged classes may be required, we follow a two-year rolling programme of topics. The rolling programmes have been developed to create a broad and balanced curriculum over a two-year period. We plan in three phases:
- Long Term planning / mapping – this indicates what topics are to be taught in each term, and to which groups of pupils.
- Medium Term planning – this gives clear guidance on the objectives and teaching strategies for each topic.
- Short term plans are for a weekly or daily basis. Learning objectives for each lesson are set and activities and resources are identified.
To assist teachers with implementation, we have developed skills documents to ensure that the curriculum is progressive and coherently sequenced. We use knowledge organisers to aid teacher's subject knowledge and as aid memoire for pupils when learning key knowledge and skills. Our teaching pedagogy is based on The Principles of Instruction, a research paper written by Barak Rosenshine.
Mixed Age Class
A mixed age class is a class in which there are children who are from more than one-year group within the same classroom. At St John's a mixed age class will comprise of pupils inYears 3 & 4, then Years 5 & 6.
How are the classes structured at St John's?
Currently there are three mixed age classes in Years 5 & 6. Due to historically insufficient pupil numbers from Speen Church of England Infant School, it has not necessarry to utilise mixed age classes in Years 3 and 4.
- Reception (VC & JR)
- Year 1 (HF)
- Year 2 (LF)
- Year 3 (EH & DH)
- Year 4 (DN)
- Year 5 and 6 (TT) Year 5 and 6 (NM) Year 5 and 6 (RM)
In all classes, whether mixed age or not, there is a wide range of ability and ensuring every child in every class makes progress is what we do every day.
To enhance and enrich the curriculum, theme weeks, theme days, trips and workshops are planned. These provide additional expereiences and opportunities for pupils as we seek to deepen their understanding and develop their cultural capital.
The impact of our curriculum will be measured by how effectively it helps our pupils to develop as individuals who embody our values and learning behaviours and carry with them the knowledge, skills and attitudes which will make them lifelong learners and prepared for life in the next stage of their education, in modern Britain and in the wider world. The main source of impact will remain the quality and breadth of work produced to ensure it matches to planning and is sequential, developing knowledge and skills. It is important not to confuse coverage with progress as learning is assessed through acquisition of knowledge and the connection of steps being taught so that key knowledge can be transferred to long term memory, embedded and then applied. Children’s preparedness for the future and demonstrating our Christian values and learning behaviours is also measured by the behaviours seen each day. The senior leadership team and subject leaders monitor individual subjects, reviewing learning through:
Pupil interviews to assess the knowledge and skills children have retained
Observations of lessons
Parental / pupil questionnaires