Curriculum

Curriculum principles

We, at Grange Community Junior School, believe that all children have the right to the best education possible, ensuring challenge for all at each child’s own level, through a varied and stimulating range of experiences and opportunities.  Through the curriculum, we aim to widen pupils’ horizons, raise expectations and build self-confidence in their own capacity to learn. Our curriculum allows children to learn through discovery, exploration, excitement and fun.  The curriculum that we deliver meets all statutory requirements of the National Curriculum.

It is our intention that our curriculum meets the needs of our children, by understanding the challenges faced by our local community. Although our school demographic has higher than average numbers of children with SEND, we still have the same high expectations that all pupils will access the whole curriculum.  Not only do we aspire for our curriculum to comprise of academic subjects which support academic outcomes, but also a wider curriculum which  develops pupils skills in a range of areas including the arts, sports, and personal development.

At Grange, we are aware of the ‘hidden curriculum’, the unplanned learning that takes place.  This includes learning from other pupils or adults.  We therefore place an emphasis upon the behaviours and values of staff and pupils.

Recovery Curriculum

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, we at Grange Community Junior School have made adaptations to the curriculum.  This has included additional teaching of personal, social and health education to support the mental health of all. We believe that our Recovery Curriculum and our school environment will provide pupils with the confidence to re-engage with learning in order to bridge the gaps that have formed during the lockdowns of 2020 and 2021. The children have had an extensive time away from their classrooms and formal learning. Some children will have had a good experience at home through home learning opportunities given to them by parents and the school provision however, these experiences will have been different for every child. Our focus will be on ensuring the ‘Recovery Curriculum’ fills the gaps that have formed whilst maintaining the progress that some will have made. We will continue our quest of excellence across the curriculum to ensure that our children leave equipped for life: able to make their own informed choices, with the skills and mind set to thrive, live happy, healthy lives and take on the world.

Our curriculum aims to:

  • equip pupils with a good grounding in literacy and numeracy
  • provide a broad and balanced curriculum that will fulfil every child’s potential
  • develop knowledge, acquire skills and understand concepts across all subjects and be able to choose and apply these in relevant situations
  • provide equality of access and the opportunity for all pupils to make progress, ensuring high expectations for every pupil and appropriate levels of challenge and support
  • make learning real, relevant and thus engaging through first-hand experiences wherever possible
  • foster a desire to learn for life
  • promote physical and mental development and an awareness of the importance of a healthy lifestyle
  • develop self-esteem
  • nurture tolerance and social skills of each child towards all others
  • promote spiritual, moral, social and cultural development
  • enable pupils to develop moral sensibility through our identified values
  • support pupils in making positive life choices and help prepare them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of adult life

Our curriculum intent

 Organisation

Pupils are taught specific knowledge and skills in all subject areas following each subject’s curriculum, building towards clear end-points by the end of Key Stage 2. Each subject’s curriculum is planned and sequenced so that new knowledge and skills build on what has been taught before.  We aim for our curriculum to address typical gaps in pupils’ knowledge and skills. Waypoints or objectives set out what pupils need to know about the current topic in order to understand and succeed in the next topic. These way points are also a means of assessing pupils’ progress.

At the centre of our curriculum are the core subjects of English, Maths and science.  Our wider curriculum, covering all other National Curriculum subjects is organised into learning pathways or journeys, which develop conceptual understanding.

The curriculum is taught through discrete subjects organised into learning journeys, which develop conceptual understanding. Where there are meaningful links between subject areas that will help to build schema, a thematic approach is used. A whole school curriculum map shows the subjects that are taught across each term and the whole academic year and indicates themes as appropriate.

Whole School Curriculum 2021-22

English and Maths Planning is completed in detail as Unit Plans which clearly identify the Learning Objectives, differentiation for both ‘catch up’ and extension opportunities.

Units of work in the Foundation Subjects are planned, usually of a half term duration. These are called medium term plans and contain the detail of the work to be covered with a progression of learning objectives. The plans also indicate resources what the pupil outcomes will be.

The RE scheme of work follows the Hampshire Agreed Syllabus: Living Difference III.

Phonics is taught, where relevant, predominantly following Twinkl Phonics and Catch up as required.

We use the vehicle of Lets Think in English (LTE) to enhance thinking skills. This is a set of largely oral-based lessons where open-ended questioning and structured group discussion increase pupils’ reasoning skills and structured reflection. This heightens pupil awareness of their own thinking.

Metacognition describes the processes involved when learners plan, monitor, evaluate and make changes to their own learning behaviours. Our curriculum is underpinned with opportunities to highlight ‘learning powers’. Throughout the curriculum teachers, exemplify the traits of an effective learner through Building Learning Power.

To support personal development of pupils, our curriculum also includes a range of first hand experiences through monthly societies. These provide opportunities for children to work as a group in their preferred choice of enrichment activities.

 

Core skills

We want our pupils to develop into individuals who are fluent and confident speakers, listeners, readers, writers and mathematicians. We value every subject’s place in the curriculum but literacy and numeracy underpin all that we do. Opportunities for speaking and listening are built in to units of learning, particularly through Lets Think English. We aim to develop our pupils’ vocabulary (spoken and written) to enable them to access ever more demanding texts as readers. Developing the skills and love of reading is a fundamental part of our curriculum. We believe that written work will be of a higher quality when there has been high-quality talk using subject-specific vocabulary beforehand.

We look for opportunities to develop numeracy across the curriculum, not just in maths lessons. We want children to recognise the order, pattern and symmetry in every aspect of life.

Broad and balanced

We want our curriculum to be broad and balanced. The knowledge, concepts and overarching ideas of individual subjects are an entitlement for every child. We cover the full scope of the National Curriculum but our school curriculum will offer opportunities for learning beyond this as we deem it relevant and interesting to our pupils.

We teach all subjects across all year groups. Each subject is valued and we work hard to ensure the integrity of each subject is preserved. It is our intention that all subjects have a place in their own right and as part of the cultural capital that education should bring. We focus on the key areas/concepts we want pupils not just to know, but also to understand. Spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) learning is embedded across the entire curriculum, with elements of discrete/focused learning in some subjects particularly PHSE and RE.

Coherent

We see our curriculum as continuous, regularly revisiting key concepts and providing practice to develop fluency. For example in history, chronology will be revisited in each year group, albeit via different contexts.  The content of the curriculum is structured so that links are made to previous learning to enhance the building of schema in the long-term memory.  We weave in key knowledge, vocabulary and skills throughout the curriculum to allow pupils to make links and consolidate learnt material to long-term memory.

Knowledge rich

For some children, especially the most disadvantaged, school is often the only place where they have the opportunity to gain knowledge of the concepts and vocabulary that will enable them to learn effectively alongside their peers. The foundation subjects make up a large part of the curriculum.  At Grange we aim to not only spark children’s interest but increase knowledge and build cultural capital for all children. Our aim is that children have a growing bank of knowledge, which they can apply, consider, weigh, analyse, evaluate, create and adapt as they grow. We want children to be wise not just well informed.

Aspirational and future focused

We want our curriculum to demonstrate the richness of the world we live in to our pupils. It should broaden their horizons and equip them with the knowledge they need so they can achieve in live.

We aim to provide our pupils with knowledge, experiences and role models that can raise their aspirations, giving them a new perspective.  We aim to lift our pupils out of their familiar context and gain the kind of perspective that comes from encountering new and different situations.

We want our curriculum to prepare children fully for the next phase of their education by ensuring that they have the knowledge appropriate for the end of Key Stage 2.

Ultimately, we aim for our curriculum to inspire the artists/designers, musicians, technicians, scientists, linguists, mathematicians and sportsmen and women of the future.

Inclusive and challenging

At Grange we have the moto ‘where everyone counts’, this is a key part of our curriculum.  Pupils all take part in all foundation subjects. Our aim is for our curriculum to offer a range of opportunities for all learners, regardless of their starting points.  Our curriculum is designed so it is flexible enough to be accessible for all and at the same time providing challenging.

In the learning materials teachers prepare, we aim for contain cognitive challenge, but with scaffolding to allow access for all. High challenge, low threat sums up our approach. Where possible tasks will be open ended to allow for growth.

Purposeful and relevant

We want our curriculum to spark curiosity in our pupils and foster their love of learning. Therefore we aim to ensure that pupils feel that the curriculum relates to them in some way.  Where possible we aim to ‘show’ pupils how this new body of information has any reliance to their own lives. Sometimes it is easier to make these links. We make the most of our local area and local experts who add further depth to the learning, for example the FAST museum for flight and Samuel Cody.  Trips and visitors are planned in to link to and enhance learning. We take advantage of specific geographical and historical features of our location where they lend themselves to topics that our children learn about. We specifically feature Nepal and the local area in Geography and use our grounds for work in science such as learning about the birds and animals in our own environment and local history in history

Personal development

We want our curriculum to prepare pupils to live full and active lives as part of their community into adulthood.  In order to produce happy, fulfilled and compassionate citizens of the world, we must weave all elements of spiritual, moral, social and cultural learning and development into our daily practice.

Pupils’ social development is a key focus at Grange – we want our pupils to be able to use a range of social skills in different contexts and with people from different ethnic, religious and socio-economic backgrounds. We believe that happy, well-rested and healthy children will learn more effectively and we will do everything we can to support pupils and parents in this regard.

Our curriculum will educate our pupils on what it means to be healthy in both body and mind. We will provide consistent opportunities for pupils to develop growth mind-sets – focused on resilience, celebrating mistakes, taking inspiration from others and being responsive to feedback.

Over their time at Grange, we want to see our pupils’ independence increase steadily so they have the capacity to be more reflective and responsible for their own learning.

We want our pupils to be recognised for their respectfulness, manners and kindness.

Safeguarding
All staff have the responsibility to ensure the safety of the children at all times – this is seen as paramount. Whilst planning the curriculum, teachers will carefully consider any tasks and activities and ensure that any health and safety guidelines are followed including completing risk assessments where necessary. Whilst as a school, we know that not all risk can be excluded from activities, as learning should challenge pupils and encourage sensible risk-taking, we do ensure that this is done in a controlled, supervised manner.
Teaching the children about keeping themselves safe is an integral part of the curriculum at Grange and can be taught as part of other learning or as discrete, specific lessons. E-safety is taught to the children as part of ICT lessons and the importance of being safe online continually reinforced with all children. See the e-safety policy for further information.

Roles and Responsibilities
The Headteacher has the responsibility for the leadership of the curriculum and delegates’ responsibility to subject leaders:

Subject Leaders
Subject Leaders (SLs) are responsible for ensuring that Medium Term Plans are written; collated and saved on the school intranet, liaising with class teachers over the content and delivery of the units of work. They evaluate and monitor standards in their subject across the whole school in order to ensure appropriate rigour, challenge, support and intervention. SLs are also responsible for ensuring that new teachers to the school are furnished with the necessary planning for their year group.

Subject Leaders are responsible for supporting class teachers to create Learning Journeys.

Class Teachers
Class teachers ensure that the curriculum is taught in line with the ethos of the school and that assessment is undertaken to monitor progress and enable provision appropriate to all learners.

Class teachers are responsible for adapting their curriculum and approach to ensure that Class teacher meets the needs of all learners and create maximum engagement for all.

Governors
The Governors monitor the success of the curriculum and hold the Headteacher to account for implementation. In order to do so they need to:

  • Gain an understanding of the curriculum.
  • See the curriculum in action.
  • Have the opportunity to enter into professional dialogue with staff.
  • Identify the standards children should achieve by the end of the key stages.

Governors should employ the following methods to enable them to monitor the curriculum:

  • Hold discussions with the Headteacher.
  • Hold discussions with other staff.
  • Observe the curriculum in action.
  • Attend meetings/functions.
  • Ask questions.
  • Receive and discuss reports on individual curriculum areas, including:
  • (i) internal reports from the Headteacher and other teachers; and
  • (ii) external reports from the Local Authority and others.

catch up strategies JAN 2021

Curriculum Intention, Implementation and Impact

Department of Education: Education catch up Scheme

Please see the following link for information on the

Education catch up scheme.

DfE Education catch up for your child