The curriculum we offer our children is broad, rich and relevant. It consists of all the learning activities, experiences and interactions which promote our school values, meets the requirements of National Curriculum and also includes what we believe is important for our children’s all round development.
We have a 'Topic Based' approach to the curriculum and we aim to ensure that our topics match the needs of our children. In order to do this we ask the children what they know and would like to find out about their topic. We collate these ideas in the form of 'Mind Maps' and we use these to adjust our teaching to match the curiosities of the children.
The National Curriculum
The National Curriculum in England sets out the knowledge and skills to be taught in all state funded in schools. It states that all state schools must offer a curriculum which is balanced and which promotes the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils at the school and society and prepares pupils at the school for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life.
The National Curriculum consists of three core subjects - Maths, English, Science, plus Religious Education and non-core foundation subjects - History, Geography, Computing, Design and Technology, Music, Art and Design, Physical Education and Languages (French). We structure and plan the curriculum to ensure that good practice remains central, equality of opportunity is ensured and we integrate the requirements National Curriculum into our topics, projects and subject teaching
Lancashire have formulated a series of guidelines and schemes of work designed to aid the delivery of the National Curriculum. These guidelines are used by staff when planning both over the whole year and termly. It enables us to ensure a balance of learning from Reception to Year 6.
Stages of Learning
At Stubbins School, education is divided into phases of learning linked to the National Curriculum.
a) Foundation Stage: In September 2000 a new Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) was introduced. This covers the period of education from 0 to 5 years. At Stubbins, this is our Reception year. Children in the Foundation Stage will be working towards the Early Learning Goals which summarise the knowledge, skills and understanding across the seven areas of learning and development that young children should gain. The seven areas consist of three prime areas: Communication and Language, Physical Development, Personal Development and four specific areas of learning; Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design. Most children will be able to reach goals these by the end of Reception. This will prepare them for work on the National Curriculum at Key Stage 1.
We are very proud of the way in which our Reception children are provided with a rich diversity of learning experiences. We believe passionately in learning through play both indoors and outdoors.
b) Key Stage 1: In years 1 and 2 children are following the National Curriculum. The learning is delivered via a topic based approach linked to programmes of study. Our principle of learning through play is still very much in evidence at the beginning of Year 1, which has its own outdoor play area. As chioldren move through Key Stage 1, learning becomes a little more formal, although we always strive to ensure that the learning experiences we provide are challenging, relevant and engaging. A 'phonics check' is carried out at the end of Year 1 and Statutory Assessments in Mathematics and English are undertaken at the end of Year 2.
c) Key Stage 2:
Years 3 and 4. In Year 3 children begin studying the next phase of the National Curriculum. They continue with a topic based approach with more opportunity for independent research. They will use and further develop skills learned in earlier phases. Year 4 children have the additional opportunity to swim each week at Marl Pits and to participate in brass instrument lessons provided by the Lancashire Music Service.
Years 5 and 6. The children continue with Upper Key Stage 2 phase of the National Curriculum. They will continue with project work together with specialist subject teaching. Children in Year 5 and 6 are expected to concentrate for longer periods and produce more extended and in-depth pieces of work. This will culminate in formal assessment (SATS) at the end of Year 6. It will also prepare them for the style of secondary education at Key Stage 3.