Curriculum and Assessment
The school follows the Primary National Curriculum which sets out the expectations for learning for each child at each stage of their schooling. Our school operates in ‘units’ where staff work together to plan exciting, engaging and motivational experiences for the children around the National Curriculum expectations.
The units are as follows –
Foundation Stage – children who first join the school in Reception year
Key Stage 1 (KS1) – children in Year 1 and 2
Lower Key Stage 2 (LKS2) – children in Year 3 and 4
Upper Key Stage 2 (UKS2) – children in Year 5 and 6
Each unit has a member of staff who is unit leader.
Each unit plans the curriculum around a common theme each term and the different subjects are taught through this with clear links in order to make the learning meaningful and relevant. Each term there is opportunity for parents/carers to be part of the learning, whether that be through our popular learning cafes, coming to sharing assemblies, learning together through take home tasks, etc.
English and Maths is taught daily as we aim to make every child effective communicators and confident with number. We aim for every child to be a confident reader by the age of seven as we believe this is key to successful learning. We teach synthetic phonics through a programme called Letters and Sounds, have an intensive support programme to support readers in Reception, run a very successful Ready Steady Read programme in Year 1, and promote a love of reading through our ‘reading adventure’ across the school. During Key Stage 1 the children progress in their reading through books which are colour banded known as their ‘book bands.’
Assessment –the children’s learning is assessed continually through day to day teaching and tasks and activities are shaped to help children move on and make good progress. We call this Assessment for Learning. More formalised assessment is used to check children’s understanding at various times throughout the year and these assessments are used to help teachers make judgements about how the children are progressing against the age related expectations set out in the National Curriculum. At the end of the academic year we will report on whether your child has reached these age related expectations (ARE) for the year group they are in.
We provide a full written report on your child’s achievement at the end of the year in the Summer Term, but communicate regularly throughout the year via parent consultation evenings and more generally through informal conversations. We operate an ‘open door’ policy and welcome your comments, queries and feedback – we want to work together to ensure your child is making the best possible progress and feels happy and safe in school.
We are lucky enough to be able to support specialist teaching of PE and Music. The children benefit hugely from this and it enhances the curriculum. We also invest heavily in human resources as we believe adult to pupil ratio and having small groups/classes is an effective way of ensuring the children make the very best progress. We have a team of very skilled support staff who work closely with the children either in class alongside the teacher, providing intervention programmes, conferencing children to help them understand next steps in their learning, supporting specific 1:1 needs and providing pastoral support to help nurture and grow children’s confidence and self-esteem.
To find out more about the curriculum in specific year groups visit our curriculum map – under ‘Important Documents’ on the home page. Units send out curriculum letters each term to let parents/carers know about their child’s learning in more detail. This includes outcomes of their learning, ways in which parents can get involved and usually an invitation to an opportunity to share in their child’s learning experience.
The school is well equipped with excellent resources for learning including ‘Tanglewood’ our outdoor classroom, an art area for practical work, a pottery studio, covered play areas for outdoor learning and continuous provision, a well-stocked and well-used library with dedicated librarian, ICT facilities and interactive whiteboards in every classroom, a large field with adventure playground equipment to name but a few. We have recently invested in a number of ‘Learn Pad’ tablets to support learning across the curriculum. New parents often comment on the wide and varied facilities that we are able to provide.
The school runs and hosts a wealth of extra-curricular activities to give the children a range of opportunities and experiences outside of school hours. These include clubs such as Football, Tag Rugby, Street Dance, Blogging Club, Hayward’s Harmonies Choir, Gardening. We also have clubs aimed at specific groups of children to provide more tailored activities around sports and being active such as Girls Can, Shining Bright and Stepping Up. We also have a number of peripatetic music teachers who visit school offering tuition to children wishing to learn to play an instrument.