At The Stoke Poges School, we want our children to aspire to be the best they can be in all aspects of life. We value each child as an individual with a unique potential for learning.
Our curriculum is designed to provide a broad and balanced education that meets the needs of all children. It has been designed to take account of the legal requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum and the Primary National Curriculum. It provides opportunities for children to develop as independent, confident and successful learners, with high aspirations, who know how to make a positive contribution to their community and the wider society. The curriculum ensures that academic success, creativity and problem solving, reliability, responsibility and resilience, as well as physical development, well-being and mental health are key elements that support the development of the whole child and promote a positive attitude to learning. The curriculum celebrates the diversity and utilises the skills, knowledge and cultural wealth of the community while supporting the children’s spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, ensuring that children are well prepared for life in modern Britain.
The key principles behind the design of our curriculum are for our children to:
- Be confident, independent and resilient; displaying a thirst for learning
- Be kind; showing empathy and compassion whilst valuing diversity
- Achieve academically across the entire curriculum, meeting at least the national expectation by the end of their primary education
- Have access to a literacy-rich curriculum
- Be culturally knowledgable about our country and our world
- Have aspirations for the future and know that these can be reached through hard work and determination
- Be well prepared for the challenges of the secondary school curriculum
- Make a positive contribution to the world they live in
- Have an appreciation of our history and their place in it
- Have knowledge and experience of art in all its facets and an appreciation of music
- Have religious understanding and respect for all beliefs
- Have an enjoyment of physical exercise and activity
The curriculum is a working document containing a carefully planned sequence of learning which is constantly being reviewed and evaluated to ensure it enriches and inspires all of our children and equips them for life in secondary school and beyond.
We have developed a knowledge-rich and enquiry-based approach which underpins and enables the application of skill. English and maths are explicitly identified to be taught in the context of other subjects. We strive for children to learn skills alongside knowledge, ensuring that both are developed. At The Stoke Poges School we see knowledge and skills as intertwined. The curriculum ensures that pupils can achieve both. We do this by having an emphasis on discrete and cross-curricular teaching. Within our curriculum, subjects are taught with increasing levels of complexity that in turn leads to deeper knowledge and understanding at a more conceptual level. We ensure that the curriculum is relevant and meaningful to pupils and for putting knowledge into context.
We believe it is our responsibility to develop literacy and numeracy skills for all our pupils. Using the Early Years Foundation Stage Strategy and National Curriculum as a basis, age-appropriate progression in knowledge for each core and foundation subject has been identified. This has been mapped out to ensure coverage of identified knowledge is secured across KS1 and KS2. We carefully select the sequence of when, what and how knowledge is taught and Phase and Subject Leaders work actively to review this aspect regularly.
In addition, the specific skills required to be successful in each subject have been identified and crafted into structured progressions.
Curriculum content is grouped into a series of units of work/teaching sequences. Each unit/sequence begins with either an enquiry question, a hook or reveal etc designed to engage the children and frame the learning journey through to an identified purposeful outcome. Initial reflection on the question supports formative assessment of pupils’ starting points and gives an opportunity, where appropriate, for pupil voice to influence learning. Staff awareness of prior learning from previous years ensures there is regular reinforcement of key knowledge and skills.
Teachers systematically check children’s understanding, identifying misconceptions and provide clear direct feedback to ensure progress. Teaching is designed to help learners to remember in the long term the content they have taught and to integrate new knowledge into larger concepts.
During the learning journey, a range of objectives in several curriculum subjects are addressed. This content is sequenced to ensure that components of knowledge lead to conceptual learning. This analysis is supported by strong subject knowledge from staff and aims for both depth of learning and breadth of coverage. Opportunities to practise knowledge and skills are built into the curriculum to secure deep understanding of each discipline. The curriculum planning ensures a layering of knowledge and concepts so that all pupils can make progress. The length of each unit/sequence depends upon the identified learning and outcomes.
Core Learning Values
Each unit addresses the three core learning values identified as essential for all subjects:
Definition: self-motivated problem solver.
- Self-questioning: ask questions and identify problems which need to be solved.
- Self-confident: persevere; manage risks in order to master new skills, knowledge and concepts. Resist peer pressure by making independent informed decisions. Develop resilience.
- Self-reflective: assess progress; recognise misconceptions; evaluate experiences; identify next steps.
Definition: emotionally mature with a depth of language learning that enables them to share ideas effectively, including in collaborative contexts.
- Empathetic: recognise emotions and motivations of self and others.
- Participate in discussion, dialogue and debate – active listening together with explaining, describing and questioning, valuing their own and others’ contributions.
- Present ideas accurately through written and spoken forms.
Definition: respects the rights of others and is proactive in helping to make the world a better place to live in.
- Understand issues affecting themselves, the global community and the environment.
- Respect themselves, the local and global community and the environment.
- Proactive – seek to improve themselves, their community and the environment.
The Stoke Poges School has recognised the use of clear, focused learning intentions and success criteria as an effective tool in gaining intended learning outcomes. Staff use effective questioning techniques to develop higher order thinking skills. In lessons, we strive to provide as many recall and application activities as possible to support the retention of knowledge and understanding.
We follow a clear programme of SMSC which is often introduced in assemblies, discussed in class and promoted through activities and actions. Phases ensure there is every opportunity to develop children’s understanding of British Values, including the protective characteristics. Children learn to take personal responsibility for their own thoughts and actions.
At The Stoke Poges School we have proactive subject leaders who oversee, develop, monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of their subject within school across all year groups and phases. Staff are committed to delivering high quality learning experiences throughout the curriculum. Support staff have developed their knowledge and skills in order to further enhance the quality of learning.
The impact of the curriculum is evident in the outcomes for all pupils.
- Engaged motivated children who take learning with them prepared for the next stage of their education.
- Assessment data which reflects progress made against national expectations.
- Application of knowledge and skills in different contexts.
- Embedding knowledge and skills through regular opportunity to practise and rehearse prior learning.
- A learning environment which is vibrant and reflects the rich and varied opportunities our children encounter.
- Learners who are ready for the next stage of education. Confident and prepared to embrace opportunities and follow their interests and aspirations.