Intent, Implementation and Impact
Our Curriculum Intent
At Stickland’s Primary School, our caring family ethos and dedication to pastoral support, develops happy and secure learners who are able to access the curriculum with confidence. We believe that our curriculum includes everything from the moment a child walks in through the school gates - all their daily experiences and their interactions with adults and their peers. A strong Christian ethos permeates through daily life which gives the children a safe and nurturing environment. We want our children to be responsible, self-motivated and independent members of society. Our aim is for them all to achieve and thrive; reach their full potential, and become confident life-long learners.
We are passionate about delivering a broad and balanced curriculum that develops thoughtful, resilient and curious children who are excited about learning.
Fundamental to this is our over-arching belief that nurturing children’s self-esteem and pride in themselves, and each other, helps to build a secure platform for learning and meeting the challenges of the modern world.
Our aim is to provide exciting and meaningful opportunities for our children, shaped by their needs and our locality, with the aim to ensure every single child flourishes socially and academically. At the same time our aim is to develop the morals and values that will allow our children to leave us as considerate citizens, prepared for meeting new people and facing new challenges and possibilities with strength and confidence.
We know that the best learning will take place when it is exciting, relevant, well-ordered and enriched by activities that take place inside and outside the classroom. We want to ensure opportunities for learning that are language-rich, and spark the children’s imagination, drawing on real-life situations which nurture independent thinking skills.
A key aim is to develop the children’s understanding of a range of Christian and British values (including love, respect, compassion, friendship, perseverance, tolerance and truthfulness) that permeate the curriculum and are returned to and built upon throughout their school life. Developing an understanding of these values provides the children with a toolkit to use when approaching learning and social situations.
Children who are life-long learners will:
- learn and apply the skills and values needed so that they have the best opportunity to make a positive difference to society
- achieve the best possible academic standards, whatever their starting point
- value themselves and each other
- be inspired and think creatively
- open up their eyes to the world, developing new interests as they journey with us
- be happy, mentally and physically healthy, and understand the links between the two
- be able to tackle the challenges relevant in today’s society and those of the future
- be equipped with the skills, language and vocabulary to allow them to engage fully with real-life problems and to empower them to act positively in response to them
- have pride in their local community and to develop a curiosity, understanding, appreciation and tolerance of communities that differ from theirs
- develop ambition and aspiration whilst being mindful of the needs of others
- We recognise that progression in learning is developed by returning to and building upon key knowledge, concepts and values over time. With this is mind our aim is for our children to master a range of concepts, values and skills whilst providing a tangible love for learning.
Our Curriculum Implementation
1. Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) and emotional well-being
PSHE sits at the heart of our curriculum. This is designed to promote and nurture our pupils’ self-esteem and social awareness, underpinning all other learning. PSHE is also taught discretely, within a bespoke framework.
2. Values-Based Education
At Stickland’s Primary School we are passionate about supporting and guiding the children's social and moral development. Adults are encouraged to model our values at all times. The values are addressed directly through lessons and collective worship but also permeate the whole curriculum.
3. Topic-led learning
We have adopted a topic-led approach to our curriculum with between 3 and 6 topics across the year being driven by History, Geography or Science. The particular ‘theme’ chosen is always relevant to the children and is designed to be exciting and engaging for that particular cohort. Whilst these subjects are the main drivers, the themes are cross-curricular and other subjects are taught as part of the topic and designed around thoughtfully-structured long and medium term plans. To prevent the creation of tenuous links however, discrete subjects are taught where necessary.
4. Carefully-sequenced curriculum
Of paramount importance to all, is an expectation of well thought out quality first teaching and learning, delivered by all. Subject leaders ensure that long-term plans are sequenced so that children build knowledge and skills over time – both building skills and knowledge within the year group curriculum, but also building on, and making connections with, prior knowledge from other years in school. Staff identify the key knowledge milestones that they want the children to learn during the course of the theme and then ensure there are plenty of opportunities for the children to practise and apply this knowledge in a range of different contexts, so that they achieve deep, long term learning.
5. Hooks and theme days/trips
To engage, immerse and ‘hook’ the children in their learning experiences, every classroom learning environment reflects the theme that the children are learning about. This learning environment is not only used as a tool for engagement, but also to support and deepen the learning experiences taking place in the classroom. Children also take part in a range of exciting ‘WOW’ days, trips and visitors.
6. Wider opportunities
Forest School is an integral part of our school curriculum. Children take part in long-term, regular sessions that echo and further holistic development.
Forest School increases a child’s confidence and self-esteem; through exploration, problem solving and being encouraged to learn how to assess and take appropriate risks depending on their environment. The use of learner-led outcomes increases confidence, social, emotional, intellectual, physical and language development, curiosity and motivation to learn both inside and outside of the classroom.
We are lucky enough to have our own school pool that all students access on a weekly basis (approximately Easter - October) - swimming isn’t just about keeping our children safe, learning new skills, helping them to grow up fit and healthy or teaching them the value of resilience and dedication – it’s also great fun and enriches their school experiences.
Children are provided with opportunities to experience new things such as learning to play the ukulele in Year 3 and learning French in Key Stage 2.
Children are encouraged to develop their speaking and listening skills from when they are 4 years old. Opportunities to take part in plays, productions and assemblies are plentiful and the children develop a strong confidence in performing in front of an audience.
School council members are voted for by their peers at the beginning of academic year, and children are nominated for the eco-committee.
Children are given the opportunity to take part in intra and inter-school sports with events including football, swimming, athletics, cricket, netball and cross country. A wide range of lunchtime and after school extra-curricular activities are available for the children to enhance their experience
7. Quality texts (cross curricular engagement)
Quality texts are integral to our curriculum approach, as we recognise that fluency in reading enables children to have access to the full curriculum. We believe it is our role to ensure children leave us being able to articulate themselves clearly, and read and write confidently and effectively. Quality texts are chosen each half term to drive learning in English and as the basis for the teaching of writing. We ensure as far as possible that the texts chosen as the driver for English link to the termly theme. During the term, children will experience narrative, poetry and non-fiction texts.
We are passionate about the developments children make in mathematics. Children in all year groups follow a mastery approach to Maths, where they are introduced to new concepts by exploring hands-on resources before moving to pictorial and abstract levels of questioning. We aim for a balance between mathematical fluency (arithmetic), reasoning and problem solving skills, in order to ensure that our children are able to apply the skills that they learn in the classroom, to everyday life.
By creating a rich, challenging and exciting mathematical curriculum, we aim to create mathematicians, who have a deep understanding, within all areas of Maths, with the ability to tackle a range of problems, enabling children to become life-long mathematicians.
8. Continuous Professional Development and Shared Practice (keeping the curriculum relevant / up to date)
As a school staff we are developing our curriculum with a focus on ensuring opportunities for learning to ‘stick’ in long term memory, and we are exploring ways in which we can structure our curriculum most effectively to ensure that children maximize their mastery of concepts.
Continuing Professional Development for all staff is a priority to ensure the skills and knowledge necessary to deliver the highest standards across the entire curriculum. Subject leaders access training to ensure the necessary expertise to play a pivotal role in both the design and delivery of their subject area. This allows subjects that are planned for to ensure clear progression of skills and knowledge across all year groups, underpinned by a consistent approach to assessment. Key knowledge is revisited and developed year on year, so that there is real depth of learning.
Our Curriculum Impact
Our children make excellent progress both academically and socially. Children are fully aware of their mental and physical well-being and the need to nurture both. Our children are resilient in the face of challenges, having learned in an environment that encourages perseverance – one in which mistakes happen and we learn from them. Our children are engaged in their learning and can talk confidently about it, making links between subject areas. They develop confident verbal and written skills that allow them to debate, to convince and to explain. Children flourish within our values-led environment and develop a strong understanding of, and ability to model, the morals and values that are taught discretely as well as woven into and throughout our curriculum. All children are encouraged to develop new interests, talents and conquer new goals, making new achievements throughout.
As staff we work together to reflect on our curriculum and make adaptions where we believe it will be of benefit to the children. Children learn key information and skills that are specific to their stage of development, focused on breadth and mastery before moving on to the next stage. This is carefully monitored and analysed through a variety of regular assessment activities. Children leave ready for secondary school with the academic and social skills that set the foundation for life-long learning.