What does your child learn at school each day? Find information about our curriculum subjects here.
We aim to ensure that the curriculum is implemented in a way that:
successful learner and how to effectively use these to move their learning on.
In the Reception year children follow the statutory elements of the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. Teaching in the Reception year builds on the experiences of the children in their pre-school settings and is informed by the strong transition arrangements that are in place.
From years 1 – 6 children study the National Curriculum and the Kent Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education.
Across the all year groups, the curriculum is carefully planned into cross-curricular ‘units’ ensuring that all the key objectives, knowledge, skills and understanding contained in the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum, National Curriculum and Kent Agreed Syllabus for RE are covered and that learning is progressive. At Preston Primary School the units are implemented on a two-year rolling programme due to the mixed year group classes. Each unit has a starting point enabling an enquiry based approach that gives purpose to the learning for the pupils. Opportunities for children to apply their skills across the different areas of the curriculum are central to our philosophy. We strongly believe that children learn best by engaging in first-hand experiences and as such there is a strong practical element to our curriculum with appropriate educational visits and workshops in order to promote a love of learning in every pupil, a desire to explore and investigate and the time to have fun. This means that children will not always complete a piece of recorded/written work. Evidence of children’s learning may also be seen in photographs, film, saved computing work, class books, display, teacher records, annotated plans etc. Children are regularly encouraged to reflect upon their learning and this may be seen at the end of a lesson, a week, a term or a unit of work.
The following skills have been deemed ‘key skills’ in the revised National Curriculum:
Whilst we appreciate that development of these key skills are fundamental to children’s education, we are committed to developing the ‘whole child’. As such we aim to provide a wide and varied learning experience for our children through a broad and balanced curriculum. We want to ensure that children make progress in their learning whilst also ensuring that children study the curriculum in depth and are able to apply the skills they have developed across the curriculum. Blooms Taxonomy is used to enable teachers to help pupils extend their skills and deepen their learning. The curriculum is designed to be accessible to all children who attend the federation and where necessary will be adapted to meet the needs of individual children.
The teaching of English is an intrinsic part of this cross-curricula approach and as such, much of the children’s learning relates to each unit. Texts have been chosen to complement the themes so that reading comprehension and writing skills are developed through them.
Whilst reading and writing skills are taught through the chosen topics and texts wherever possible, it is necessary to teach some aspects discretely.
In the Foundation Stage and key stage 1, phonics is taught systematically using an approach similar to Read, Write, Inc along with a wide variety of well-chosen resources. This progresses into year 3 where phonic knowledge continues to underpin the teaching of spelling. Grammar, punctuation and spelling will be taught in line with the national curriculum, building on the phonics teaching.
The majority of pupils learn to join their handwriting in year 2 though this is delayed or revised in lower key stage 2 if necessary. Presentation skills, including those that are computer- generated are an important part of children’s learning across the school.
Drama and Performance poetry are a valued part of the curriculum and opportunities are given to all children to perform to a ‘real’ audience. A wealth of enrichment activities are used to enhance the children’s learning.
Children develop their ability to read in a variety of ways -:
Learning to decode text is important and the early stages of reading in particular, are closely linked to the teaching of phonics (letter sounds). We use a wide variety of structured schemes that support the learning of phonics and enable children to read whole texts from a very early stage, helping them to quickly see themselves as readers. The main scheme used at Preston is Oxford Reading Tree supplemented with Ginn 360, Read Write Inc and Songbirds. However, a great emphasis is also placed on understanding and comprehension and children will be exposed to a wide selection of other texts so that they become accustomed to different styles of writing and different types of books. As soon as possible, children will be reading a range of material from appropriate publishers and they will be encouraged to select books of different genres as well as comics, magazines, newspapers and and I.C.T. texts. The emphasis is very much on reading for pleasure as well as reading for learning and, through our approach, we hope to encourage a life-long love of books.
Mathematics is essential to everyday life and is, therefore, a high priority for us. We aim to provide a maths education that enables our pupils to:
Pupils will be supported to develop a secure understanding through practical maths activities and regular use of manipulatives. Those children who grasp concepts readily will be challenged through being offered rich and sophisticated problems before any acceleration through new content. Those who are not sufficiently fluent with earlier material will be supported to consolidate their understanding before moving on.
Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural aspects of learning underpin all aspects of school life and the values of the school. The school takes account of the non-statutory guidance material on Personal, Social, Health and Economic education (PSHE) and citizenship when planning the curriculum. E-safety and responsible online behaviours permeate all aspects of school life.
Religious Education is planned from the Locally Agreed Syllabus, linked with the thematic units wherever possible. Parents have a right to withdraw their children from R.E. Where parents choose to exercise this right, the school will discuss with them alternative work for the pupil. Such arrangements should not require the school to deploy additional resources.
French is taught predominantly as our modern foreign language. However, developing inter-cultural understanding is just as important as learning different languages.
Our children tell us regularly that they learn and remember best when they are outdoors and physically accessing learning. This is the case from reception to year 6. Our ethos is to aim to provide as many opportunities as possible for our pupils to engage in physical, outdoor learning to support the development of their knowledge and understanding across all aspects of the curriculum. We want children to live ,breath and experience the curriculum first hand. We believe that frequent participation in outdoor , adventurous activities has a positive impact not only upon children's physical development and well- being but also on their progress across the curriculum. In particular, children have the opportunity to develop key skills such as team work and problem-solving and increase their confidence. This offer is central to our vision of providing a holistic educational experience for each and every child where elements of differing subjects are intertwined. Our experience in school shows that children know more and remember more when they learn through these physical experiences.
Across the federation a number of our teaching team have completed their forest school training or are Scout leaders. these members of staff provide expert support to their colleagues to ensure that lessons maximise the learning opportunities available when working outside. They are also able to facilitate activities requiring specific training e.g. lighting a fire. Learning outdoors is a regular feature of our curriculum provision. teachers will often 'take their lessons outside' and use 'working in the field' to deliver high quality lessons that enable pupils to acquire and remember the skills, knowledge and understanding detailed in our curriculum plans.
At Preston Primary we are fortunate to have a variety of different outdoor learning spaces on site. In addition we have access to the recreation ground, a local meadow and a wood.
Our offer is further enhanced by the wide range of educational visits that are an integral part of our unit plans. these are planned to focus on the children's local environment to begin with and then enable them to explore further afield as they progress through the school culminating in a week long residential visit towards the end of year 6.
The curriculum is further enriched by a wide variety of extra-curricular activities enabling children to pursue areas in which they are particularly interested or talented. Children are given the opportunity to attend extra-curricular clubs, festivals, competitions etc.
It is widely recognised that children who are supported through a strong partnership between home and school have a greater chance of achieving well. Therefore, we strive to develop good relationships with parents and carers and provide information and guidance that enables you to effectively support your children’s learning. Parents are informed about the curriculum through topic letters and are invited to attend curriculum workshops. You can also find out more about the curriculum units by following this link. We expect parents to support their children through home learning as detailed in the homework policy.
In order to support each child to progress as much as possible in their learning the delivery of the curriculum is supported by a thorough assessment process. Day to day feedback and marking is used to inform the more formal assessment systems. Children in the Reception year are assessed during their first term at school using the Early Excellence Baseline Assessment. At the end of the Reception year, an assessment is made in relation to the Early Learning Goals. In years 1 – 6 children are assessed using the federation’s Steps to Success in English and maths. Assessment in the other subjects is informed through our FLOURISH days when children are given the opportunity to choose how they would like to respond to their unit question. Children in years 1, 2, 4 and 6 undertake the National Tests/Tasks. Other tests may be used to support teacher’s assessments and so inform future provision. The progress of each child is discussed with parents at the parent consultation meetings. A written report for parents is produced at the end of each school year. However, parents are welcome to discuss their child’s learning and progress at any point during the school year.