A Look at the Curriculum

Whilst following the National Curriculum for England, we have a Creative Curriculum approach that allows us to present each subject within topic areas. For the academic year 2016-2017, the half termly topics for Key Stage 1 & 2 are :  ‘Invaders and Settlers’, ‘Marvellous Maps’, ‘Riotous Royalty’, ‘All Around the World’, ‘People from the Past’ and ‘On Home Ground’. Our Reception class follow the Early Years Curriculum and their half termly topics are : ‘Ourselves’, ‘Celebrations’, ‘Traditional Tales’, ‘Creatures Great & Small’, ‘Passport Round the World’ and ‘Fantasy’.   This Creative Curriculum approach has proved very successful;  we find the children are more engaged and enthusiastic which in turn leads to improved understanding and learning.  Further details can be found on the ‘Class’ page or by contacting the school.

 ‘Lessons are consistently enjoyable and capture pupils’ enthusiasm and interest.”Ofsted Feb 2013

Curriculum Plan for 2016-2017

The following document explains the long term curriculum plan for all year groups at Stratford St Mary Primary School. The document shows the curriculum for each subject and what will be taught in each half term.

Long Term Plan for 2016-2017

Enhancing the National Curriculum

Our children make regular education visits both within the village and further afield to enrich their learning. We have close links with other schools in the area which means children and staff often collaborate on special projects.

Our children develop a strong sense of community involvement and global understanding through events such as fundraising, special assemblies and visits from outside agencies. We have a strong School Council and Junior Road Safety team who work alongside staff to develop our safety, enjoyment and school as a whole. We also have an Eco-Council, Sports Council and we have Anti-Bullying Ambassadors.

Our children take a great interest in the well-being of others. It is quite common for the children to ask to help those who are less fortunate than themselves. We will support a number of charities and fundraising events each year, usually chosen by the School Council.

Children across the school elect class members to represent them on the School Council. They meet regularly and discuss issues, developing a good sense of civic process and business practice. These children are the ‘voice’ of the school as a whole and take their role very seriously.

As a school, we usually offer opportunities for both work-experience and trainee student teachers to join the teaching staff during the year.

English

Reading and writing are the foundation for all other subjects. The National Curriculum sets out distinct areas to be covered: speaking and listening skills, reading, writing, grammar and spelling.

“Pupils have very high speaking and listening skills.”Ofsted Feb 2013

In general, writing attainment is very high across the whole school. We use our creative curriculum to inspire writing and in the past, a number of our children had their work published in a book of poetry.

The children are taught to read using a mixture of methods but a great emphasis is placed on the teaching of phonics through the ‘Letters and Sounds’ approach. Children are now tested on their phonic understanding at the end of Year 1, but the implementation of phonic skills continues throughout the school.

The Accelerated Reader programme is embedded across the Key Stage 2 curriculum aimed at getting children excited about books; their achievements are then celebrated in their class assemblies. Children are encouraged to read at school and at home with graded reading books and a weekly choice from the school library.

Mathematics

We work closely with our local schools to ensure Maths teaching is of the highest standards, following the national Maths Specialist Training; in line with the new National Curriculum, the aims are to broaden children’s understanding and experiences with an emphasis on mental maths, oral work and problem solving involving interactive whiteboard activities. The children are encouraged to explain their understanding and learning on a daily basis.

Where possible, maths is brought to life through ‘real experiences’ and is supported through key resources such as Numicon. Children also have the opportunity to consolidate their mathematical understanding through an online homework program and a wealth of mathematical apparatus and games.

Science

Science is taught within the creative curriculum with the aim that practical learning is not only fun but a key way to develop a deeper understanding of scientific concepts. In both Key Stages, the areas for learning are Scientific Enquiry, Life Processes and Living Things, Materials and their Properties, and Physical Processes.

We are very fortunate to have ample scope within our grounds for scientific explorations and where possible, children are taught science in a ‘hands on’ way.

We also have a close relationship with East Bergholt High School who periodically arrange joint science days in Key Stage 2. 

Computing

Our children become confident and capable users of technology early in school life. From Reception onwards children enjoy a broad range of ICT based technology in their curriculum. We teach all children how to use technology successfully and ensure they learn how to use this technology safely and respectfully, keeping personal information private.

From Key Stage 1 onwards, children are now being taught how to create and ’debug’ simple programmes and to use logical reasoning to predict the behaviour of simple programs to name but a few of the areas of study.

Religious Education

Our school is non-denominational and our programme of study follows the revised Suffolk Agreed Syllabus. Every class spends time across the year exploring different faiths and cultures from around the world.

There are 4 whole school assemblies per week and and class assemblies for the other day all of which include acts of worship. If you wish to withdraw your child from acts of worship, please contact the Headteacher who will arrange this for you.

Physical Education/Healthy Lifestyles

As a school we are dedicated to helping our children enjoy an active life and this includes participation in a wide range of sports and games.

We also benefit hugely from the Schools Sports Partnership Programme where we offer inter-school team games within our local schools, organised by East Bergholt High School and we also participate in the Suffolk School Games competitions, festivals and tournaments.

We have a Specialist Sports Coach working in our school on a weekly basis, developing all the PE curriculum skills, such as dance, basic motor skills, games, gymnastics, co-ordination and control.There are also a number of after school sports clubs that run throughout the year. In addition to this, our older children have the opportunity to take part in a ‘Bikeability’ course, which teaches them how to ride their bikes safely on the road.  

Other Subjects

The other curriculum subjects of Art and Design, Design Technology, Geography, History, Languages and music. Teachers rotate to teach their specialist subjects throughout Key Stage 1 & 2 on a weekly basis.

Support and Extension

Children’s progress and learning is continually monitored throughout their time with us to ensure they are making the best possible progress. This enables us to quickly identify if children have particular needs.

Children identified with Special Educational Needs or requiring additional support will have work adapted to their individual needs. Additional support is offered both in class time for the morning Maths and Literacy sessions, but also as small withdrawal groups in the afternoon sessions.

Parents are always informed and involved with their child’s progress and any formal additional needs.

“Support for any pupil who shows signs of falling behind is highly effective.”Ofsted Feb 2013

All children will have access to the National Curriculum whatever their special needs might be. Some children will only require a short intensive support programme whereas others may require long term input. Whatever a child’s requirement, we will do our utmost to meet their individual needs within the normal classroom setting with appropriate resources and support, calling on the County resources where necessary.

Additional support may include extension work for those particularly able children, as well as appropriately differentiated activities for all learners. The school maintains a register of children identified with abilities above and beyond their peers in different areas of learning. These children are given additional extension and enrichment opportunities to accelerate their progress as appropriate.

All children in our school can expect complete equality and acceptance into school life, with no discrimination in relation to ability, race, creed, religion or other distinguishing feature.

If you would like any further details of our curriculum, please contact the school.