Our schools have introduced the new primary curriculum and we are committed to ensuring pupils learn key knowledge and concepts for all subjects in depth by carefully planned learning progression. We aim to deepen learning and develop children’s understanding of transferring and applying their learning by using high quality texts to link aspects of the curriculum. We also remain fully committed to ensuring children ‘experience’ their learning through meaningful real life contexts and opportunities.
Threaded through the delivery of the national curriculum is our Skills for Life curriculum’. This promotes and teaches children in all year groups what we feel are the essential skills and attitudes for lifelong learning; confidence, resourcefulness, responsibility, independence and collaboration.
The prominence of our Christian values promoted daily through acts of collective worship, RE and the conduct and manner of all ensure Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural learning (SMSC) is well developed and pupils are aware of the history and values of Britain and are prepared for life in Modern Britain.
We teach children how to keep safe; through PSHCE and sessions from school staff as well as specialist support agencies (e.g. ‘Childline’, Fire Service). This will include road and firework safety, stranger awareness, internet safety and sex education.
There are high expectations for all groups with challenging learning for all achieved through effective differentiation, targeted questioning and a focus on building pupils’ independence and responsibility for their learning. High quality AFL (Assessment for Learning) is used to personalise learning for all groups of learners maximising their rates of progress and ensures they are well prepared for future learning.
Pupils are encouraged to learn from mistakes developing resilience and good learning behaviours. Our behaviour for learning principles are built upon the principles of intrinsic reward and as a result learning, determination and perseverance are encouraged and acknowledged and praise/stickers for results are avoided. We are trying to encourage growth mindsets.
In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work—brains and talent are just the starting point. This view creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment.
― Carol S. Dweck, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success
‘A teacher’s job is not to make work easy. It is to make it difficult. If you are not challenged, you do not make mistakes, if you do not make mistakes then feedback is useless.’
Parents may be interested in reading Carol Dweck’s books about growth mindsets:
Dweck, C. S. (2006). Mindset: The new psychology of success. New York: Random House. Dweck, C. S. (2012). Mindset: How You Can Fulfil Your Potential. Constable & Robinson Limited.
Parents may also be interested in;
Syed . M (2010) Bounce: The myth of talent and the power of practice: Fourth Estate.
Gladwell .M (2008) Outliers The Story of Success: Penguin
These texts also explore the concept growth mindsets and the importance of purposeful practice.
High quality talk and effective questioning are developed across the school to ensure pupils can confidently use questioning skills to further and deepen their learning. As a result pupils become more independent, take greater ownership over their learning and are well prepared for the next stage of their education.
In The Federation children are taught to read using systematic synthetic phonics within Early Years and Key Stage 1. They are taught to decode and blend words using the sounds they have learnt in Phonics. They are also taught to use picture clues and reading for meaning to help them when reading books.
Throughout Early Years and Key Stage 1 the children will read our school Reading Scheme; this is a combination of fiction and nonfiction books placed into bands appropriate for a child’s reading development. Once a child is a competent reader and they can show fluency and a deep understanding of what they have read they move off the reading scheme books.
From Early Years on children are encouraged to develop a love of reading and books. All pupils have access to a school library with a range of fiction and nonfiction books and families are encouraged to read with and to their children as frequently as possible.
Assessment of the New Curriculum
Our school system for assessing the new curriculum is based upon the following principles:
- Effective feedback based on accurate assessment by all adults in conjunction with pupils is central to our learning principles. Clear pupil friendly systems ensure feedback is acted upon to improve learning.
- Formative and summative assessment is used to improve teaching and learning, curriculum provision and raise achievement.
- Assessment is based upon the work children produce over time in a range of contexts. Test scores are rarely used as a means of assessment.
- Assessment judgements are carefully moderated with colleagues and other professionals from within and beyond the school (through the teaching school alliance and Local Authority networks).
- Assessment evaluates how well pupils are doing against year group expectations. This helps identify pupils who might be falling behind and ensures there is challenge for all groups of learners.
- School leaders, including governors are able to use assessment summaries as a tool to monitor progress and attainment to ensure the school is helping pupils achieve well.
- Parents are provided with a clear and accurate sense of their child’s achievement and progress as well as areas where they can support their child’s learning.
- The school can provide data for external teams to show how children are performing.