The four year olds in the reception class come into school with different levels of skills, knowledge, confidence and competence and to meet the varying needs of these children the organisation in the classroom is carefully planned to provide a Foundation Stage curriculum based upon the seven areas of learning which consists of three prime areas and four specific areas as listed below:
- Communication, Language
- Physical development
- Personal, social and emotional development
- Understanding the world
- Expressive arts and design
We encourage our children to be active learners by providing independent learning activities through structured play.
A significant amount of the curriculum is accessed through the outdoor environment. The children also have access to a great variety of literature in the sharing of Big Books with their class teacher. All the learning processes are enjoyable and encourage the child to work towards Early Learning Goals, which are a preparation for Y1 when they meet the full National Curriculum.
Years 1 and 2
We support the transition from Foundation Stage (Reception Class) to KS1 (Y1), through links between Foundation Stage Curriculum and National Curriculum. We provide opportunities to support and extend children’s learning within the daily routine, through structured play and Independent Learning Activities.
The National Curriculum programmes of study provide clear objectives for teaching and identifiable targets for pupil learning.
Great emphasis is placed on English and Mathematics in the curriculum as their acquisition is necessary for progress in all areas of the curriculum. Both year groups have structured literacy and numeracy programmes.
The National Curriculum subjects of: English, Mathematics, Science, Design and Technology, Information Technology, History, Geography, Art, Music and Physical Education are taught separately and, when appropriate, through themes. These provide the children with opportunities to learn through practical experiences and are planned to ensure continuity and progression.
English is divided into four areas:
Speaking & Listening, Reading, Writing, Spelling
We aim to develop the children’s skills in all areas of the curriculum. The ability to communicate in a coherent, confident manner will benefit the children in all aspects of life. This is developed by encouraging the child to talk by recounting stories and experiences, asking questions, giving explanations and to become involved in games and discussions, where communication is essential.
The activities and experiences provided are aimed at encouraging children to enjoy language and to instil the desire to love and read books.
The school offers a wide range of story and information books thus enriching vocabulary and widening the children’s experiences. We try to ensure that each child has access to books appropriate to his/her needs. Every child has the opportunity of borrowing a book each week from the school library.
The ability to express thoughts, opinions and feelings in words is important and is encouraged through creative writing, drama, poetry and recording.
Spellings are taught systematically and develop according to the child’s needs.
We aim to develop in the pupils a positive attitude to Maths. Most aspects of mathematics are taught within the daily Numeracy lesson but they are also used, applied and developed through activities in other areas of the curriculum where appropriate.
Through class activities, which are built upon the child’s own experiences, we will help the child to have at his level of development an understanding of number, measurement, shape and space, and data handling.
The National Curriculum, which sets out the basis of what should be taught in Mathematics, forms the framework for the scheme of work within school. Computers, specific mathematical apparatus, everyday objects and situations will be used as teaching resources as well as the Rigby Maths Scheme which is based on the National Numeracy Strategy. This is supplemented by other Mathematical resources.
Science for young children means exploring, discovering and investigating the world around them. These activities help children gather experience they need to understand the world in which we live. We aim to make these experiences as broad and varied as possible.
Through science and investigation and experimental learning we hope to extend the children’s scientific knowledge and skills in the areas specified in the Programmes of Study i.e. Life Processes and Living Things, Materials and their Properties, Physical Processes.
DESIGN AND TECHNOLOGY
In design and technology the children develop a range of skills that enable them to design and make and begin to understand the way articles work and why they are made in certain ways.
Each year group has 3CD Rom Systems, one of which has access to the Internet, which is closely supervised. Each year group also have an Interactive Whiteboard.
The children are given opportunities to develop an awareness of the past and of the ways in which is was different from the present through the children’s own experiences, stories, family history, everyday life, pictures, photographs, artefacts from the past and visits to buildings and museums.
Geography is the study of people and places. The children will learn about their locality and a contrasting locality.
Art will be used in various forms throughout the curriculum. Children will be given every opportunity to experience many types of art materials and media. In this area of the curriculum the children will be able to express their creative abilities and grow in appreciation of various art forms. The children will be introduced to the work of artists, craftspeople and designers.
Children are encouraged to listen, participate in, appreciate and enjoy music in all its forms. Dedicated music lessons are taught weekly with further opportunities taught on a cross curricular basis.
Each child to their full physical potential as well as the acquisition and development of gymnastic, dance and games skills as outlined in the National Curriculum. We try to give physical education a high profile in school.
- All of our children participate in a range of high quality Physical Education each week.
- Children take part in physical activity during break and lunchtime.
- Playground Buddies and Midday Supervisors have been trained to assist learners with playground games during break times.
- Children have access to a variety of extra-curricular activities.
In school, we build upon the foundations, which the children receive at home. Therefore, the partnership between home, school and parish is important in developing the faith of the child.
Religious Education takes place as a subject in the curriculum through the use of the ‘Come and See’ Programme. The programme addresses three questions ‘Where did I come from? Who am I? Why am I here?’ These questions are explored by the children in different topics throughout the year based on three themes:
a) Community of Faith/Church
b) Celebration in Ritual/Sacraments
c) Way of life/Christian Living
Equally important to the scheme is the ethos of the whole school, which should reflect a Christian caring attitude, where children begin to prepare for life, and love of God is taught through love of neighbour.
We also follow the ‘Journeying Together’ programme in which each class shares a Liturgy with parents once per term.
Central to the life of the school are opportunities for prayer, collective worship, the celebration of the liturgy and the beginning of preparation for Reconciliation.
The Governors are required to remind parents of their right of withdrawal of pupils from religious worship and education. However, parents are also reminded that the school exists to give a Catholic education to its pupils and therefore they are expected to be in sympathy with its aims and objectives.
In the event of withdrawal, alternative provision will be made.
We aim to address the provision of sex education in partnership with parents in a cross-curricular way using the following curriculum programmes:
Personal, Social and Health Education
PERSONAL, SOCIAL & HEALTH EDUCATION & CITIZENSHIP
It is essential that a caring and positive approach is adopted to encourage good pupil self image, self esteem and promote self-confidence. PSHE&C is ensured partly through the class teacher system. Each member of staff is responsible for the class progress for most of the curriculum and in consequence a close relationship can develop between teacher and child. Great care is given to forging links with school, home and parish. We also have a PSHE programme in which mixed age groups work in 4 small teaching groups to address various PSHE/Citizenship issues and to build the children’s self-esteem.
We have a school council, made up of elected children from each class. The school council represents the children’s views and opinions on current issues.
SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS
A Special Educational Needs Policy is in place to support children with difficulties/disabilities.
Teachers, through close observation and assessment provide for individual differences in the classroom. When necessary individual programmes of work are developed, teaching methods are adapted through grouping within the classroom and materials are carefully selected. Individual attention is given when needed by the Teaching Assistants, who works closely with the Class Teacher to support the child’s learning.
Parents are always consulted for their approval when specialist help from the LEA is needed for children and where possible encouraged to participate in the learning programme to meet these children’s needs.
Parent’s opinions are valued so please contact school at any time if you think your child is experiencing difficulties.