The National Curriculum consists of the three core subjects English, Mathematics and Science, together with the foundation subjects: History, Geography, Design Technology, Computing, Music, Art, Physical Education, Personal & Social Health Education (PSHE), Religious Education and Modern Foreign Languages (for Key Stage 2).
The curriculum is all the planned activities that we organise to promote learning and personal growth and development. It also includes the ‘hidden’ curriculum which the children learn from the way they are treated and expected to behave within the teachings of the Gospels. This underpins our broad and balanced delivery of the curriculum within the context of a Catholic school.
Our curriculum is underpinned by our school values:
- We value the teachings of the Gospels and these are used to promote the spiritual and moral development of each person
- We value the uniqueness of each child. Our curriculum promotes respect for the views of each individual child and for all cultures
- We value the importance of each person in our community. We promote cooperation and understanding between all members of our school community. We aim to enable each child to be successful and provide equal opportunities for all
- We value our environment and throughout the curriculum we aim to teach our pupils to respect our world by being responsible citizens
In our curriculum we aim to:
- Follow the statutory requirements
- Ensure breadth across the curriculum so that children learn and develop skills to the best of their ability
- Ensure equality of entitlement across year groups
- Make effective use of specialist staff
- Promote a positive attitude to learning
- Teach children the basic skills in English, Mathematics and Computing which is a responsibility of all staff
- Enable pupils to be creative and develop their own thinking
- Enable pupils to be positive citizens in today’s society
- Teach children to have an awareness of their own spiritual development and to understand right from wrong, being able to forgive themselves and others
- Enable children to have respect for themselves and to be able to live and work cooperatively with each other
We recognise that the education of our children is a partnership and we seek the interest and involvement of governors, all staff and parents.
As we prepare children for adult life we will ensure that they have life skills in PSHE, Computing and communication which will empower them to take up a responsible and life fulfilling role in the community.
The context of our English programme has been altered to accommodate the changes in the new curriculum. This means that there is more emphasis on reading for pleasure and reading will be taught through a Phonics programme. Drama has been reinstated as a statutory requirement and children will engage in learning and reciting poetry off by heart. There will also be greater expectations in the learning of Grammar and Punctuation.
We use the Ruth Miskin, Read Write Inc. scheme to teach Reading and Phonics. This is very structured and children are taught in small groups in Year R, and across Year 1, 2 and 3 with assessments every six weeks.
Our Mathematics framework has been adapted to incorporate the changes in the new curriculum. Areas of Mathematics include: Number, Measurement, Geometry, Statistics, Ratio, Proportion and Algebra. Children at the age of 5 will be expected to count up to 100 and learn number bonds to 20 and simple fractions will be taught from KS1. By the age of 9 children will be expected to know their tables up to 12×12.
Science will continue to be taught through topic work with the necessary changes made. These changes are: greater emphasis on learning scientific vocabulary with more progression in Scientific Enquiry and Habitats, Food Chains and Seasonal Changes in KS1, with Evolution and Inheritance introduced at Year 6.
In Art children are encouraged to develop their creative skills, explore their own ideas and record their experiences in artistic form as well as developing skills in drawing, painting and use of other art and craft materials. They will also learn about the lives and works of prominent artists and designers and understand the historical and cultural aspects of various art forms.
The new curriculum will enable children to become confident and creative users of information and communication technology. In this subject they will learn to understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of Computer Science. From the age of 5 children will learn to write and test simple programs as well as organise, store and retrieve data. From the age of 7 they will be taught to understand computer networks including the internet. Children in Years 5 and 6 will be taught to create HTMLs and APPs. There is now a greater focus on programming rather than on operating programs.
In D&T the aim is to set children on the path to becoming the designers and engineers of the future. The children will develop their creative, practical and technical ability in order to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world. They will be able to create their own products linking their work to the world of Mathematics, Engineering, Science, Computing and Art. Children will also learn and apply the principles of nutrition in cooking.
The aim of the Geography curriculum is to develop children’s curiosity and fascination about the world we live in. In KS1 children will develop their knowledge and understanding of their local environment and in KS2 this will extend to the national environment of the UK and from there, extending to other parts of the world. The children will be encouraged to see the interdependency between human and physical features as well as develop their skills in mapping and use of geographical resources.
The emphasis in this subject will be on learning the chronology of British History from earliest times to 1066 as well as looking at how Britain has influenced and been influenced by the wider world. In KS1 children will study the lives of significant individuals, who have contributed to national and international achievements and significant historical events that took place locally, nationally or globally. In KS2 there is much more focus on historical enquiry, looking at how we find out things from sources and asking questions about the past
Modern Foreign Language
Children will be learning French throughout KS2 as this is now mandatory and will be expected to master basic grammar and accurate pronunciation and to converse, present, read and write in the language.
In KS2 there is more emphasis on the history of music and composers.
In the light of the changes made to the National Curriculum in September 2014 topics being taught in each year group have changed or been adapted to include the relevant amendments brought about by these changes in the foundation subjects.