The Curriculum at Lowerplace Primary School
The inclusive curriculum at Lowerplace Primary School is designed to provide a broad and balanced education that meets the needs of all children. Based on the 2014 National Curriculum, it provides opportunities for children to develop as independent, confident and successful learners, with high aspirations, who know how to make a positive contribution to their local community and the wider society.
Our ambitious bespoke curriculum, has been designed to take into account the legal requirements of the early years’ foundation curriculum, the National Curriculum and the locally agreed syllabus for Religious Education. In addition, we have worked hard to ensure that our locality and our children’s context is taken into consideration. It
exposes our children to enriching experiences and immerses then in disciplinary knowledge and substantive knowledge. The curriculum is underpinned by evidence, research and cognitive science.
Each subject has been mapped out so that there is a clear progression from early years to Year 6. There is a progression for disciplinary knowledge as well
as substantive knowledge. A high priority given to meeting the needs of children with SEND and for those from more disadvantaged backgrounds
There is an emphasis on oracy and vocabulary acquisition, and strategies to break down barriers and accelerate progress. A rich diet of language and vocabulary is deliberated planned for.
Specific skills are discreetly taught and practised so that they become transferrable. The sequenced units activate prior learning, build on skills and deepen knowledge AND understanding. Learning is cumulative: vocabulary and content is taught, retrieved and built upon
Where relevant and meaningful, a cross-curricular ‘topic’ approach is employed by teachers to make links between subjects and practical real-life experiences are incorporated to inspire and motivate our children.
The children’s own community, its heritage and traditions are frequently used as a starting point for engaging interest to enrich children’s learning experiences.
The outdoor environment and the local community are considered an opportunity for active learning for all our children. All learners have access to good quality educational experiences beyond the classroom, ensuring that there are frequent and progressive occasions for learning outside the classroom integrated into the curriculum.
The curriculum provides children with memorable experiences, in addition to diverse and rich opportunities from which children can learn and develop a range of transferable skills.
Our curriculum ensures that academic development, creativity and problem solving, as well as physical development, well-being and mental health are key elements that support the development of our pupils and promote a positive attitude to learning. Our curriculum promotes an understanding and respect for our local, diverse community, of which we are proud, as well as the beyond the local area. It utilises the skills, knowledge and cultural wealth of the community while supporting the children’s spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, ensuring that children are well prepared for life in Modern Britain.
The school takes pride in providing a highly inclusive environment, where learners demonstrate high levels of enjoyment in their education and most make good progress in most subjects and areas of learning. Children at all levels are helped to achieve their potential. Those who are most able are challenged and supported through being offered tasks which provide opportunities for greater depth and those who are less confident are encouraged and given targeted support to embed skills, to develop at their own pace or simply to learn in a style that best suits their individual needs.
Each subject is divided into units of learning for all year groups. All units have an identified composite; the composite is the big question. This question (the composite) is then broken down into a number of components, which identifies the key learning we have prioritised. There are generally no more than five components, this enables there to be depth of learning. Units are deliberately sequenced for robust progression and retrieval and rehearsal is built in throughout.
Each unit of learning in Science, History, Geography and RE is supported by a knowledge organiser and the learning is enhanced by the use of formative assessment and retrieval to ensure the children do more, know more and remember more.
A varied timetable for extra-curricular activities is offered by the school, with clubs that support the core curriculum offer, as well as those which develop specialist skills, whilst also extending the range of children’s experiences. A primary focus of our curriculum is to raise aspirations, promote a sense of personal pride in achievement, and provide a purpose and relevance for learning.
Subject leaders play an important part in the success of the curriculum through a programme of monitoring, evaluation and review and the celebration of good practice which contributes to the ongoing commitment to evolve and improve further. All subject leaders are given training and the opportunity to keep developing their own subject knowledge, skills and understanding, so they can support curriculum development and their colleagues throughout the school. There is high focus on cognitive load theory and much attention given to knowing more and remembering more
We aim for our children to leave each school year having met the expectation for their age group across all subjects. In addition, we are very keen for them to be fully prepared for their next stage of education and recognise the importance of children doing well in end of key stage assessments.
The teaching and learning practice across the school provides a strong foundation and opportunities for children to collaborate and develop social skills both indoors and out. This curriculum design ensures that the needs of individual and small groups of children can be met within the environment of high quality first teaching, supported by targeted, interventions where appropriate. In this way, it can be seen to impact in a positive way on children’s outcomes.
Enjoyment of the curriculum promotes achievement, confidence and good behaviour. Children feel safe to try new things. High quality visits and visitors to the school enhance the curriculum and provide opportunities for writing for a purpose.
Children have opportunities to share their learning with each other, their parents and carers through assemblies, performances, competitions and events involving other schools. Developing their independence and motivation as learners and their sense of responsibility as future citizens is at the heart of all our teaching and learning.