Our Curriculum Adventure so far…

We believe that great learning opens doors and expands horizons. Our greatest gift that we can give to all our children is to install a love of learning and develop a thirst for knowledge. This way they will achieve the best possible outcomes and build learning habits that will last a lifetime.

The new National Curriculum was introduced in 2014. This curriculum introduced less content but developed the idea of teaching for greater depth of understanding across all subjects. We therefore decided to completely re-vamp and re-structure our curriculum. We focussed our new curriculum upon:

  • Opportunities within the curriculum to promote and build cultural capital
  • The development of a skills and knowledge based curriculum
  • Aspects of our existing curriculum that the children had enjoyed and had secured positive outcomes

We started by identifying a set of Curriculum Drivers that would underpin our curriculum and would identify what learning is all about at West Hove Infant School. After narrowing down, we identified four key Curriculum Drivers; Standards, Enjoyment, Enquiry and Diversity. We then explored what these would look like in the classroom. http://www.westhoveinfants.co.uk/our-curriculum/curriculum-drivers/.  We then started to plan out our Curriculum Map, which details the long term overview of learning intentions and the range of opportunities available for each area of the curriculum. http://www.westhoveinfants.co.uk/our-curriculum/curriculum-map/.  This was then referenced back to the curriculum drivers to double check that they were adequately represented in the long term overview. Once we were happy with this, we started to map out the detailed planning in our Termly Overviews; i.e. term by term, week by week, for each year group to ensure key knowledge, skills and understanding is mapped out cohesively, building upon what learning has happened before and ultimately aimed at committing learning into each child’s long term memory. http://www.westhoveinfants.co.uk/our-curriculum/schemes-of-work/.   Each subject leader has attended Subject Leader Meetings, where they have explained how they have planned their area of learning in the Curriculum Maps. http://www.westhoveinfants.co.uk/our-curriculum/subject-overviews/

How learning is organised

Learning is organised into topics to utilise the natural links between different subjects and ensure a cohesive, coherent experience for our children. This is detailed in the Termly Overviews, which are frequently reviewed alongside Curriculum Maps to build in further opportunities for curriculum links. Where meaningful links cannot be made, learning is taught through the specific subject.

The Termly Overviews also identify the key learning outcomes/end points, which are used to assess achievement and inform subsequent learning.

National Curriculum coverage has been clearly mapped out to ensure that all children experience a broad and balanced curriculum and have access to their legal entitlement and cultural capital.

Daily planning identifies key questions together with subject specific, key vocabulary. These provide challenge at all levels and vocabulary that is key for the development of future learning. We have developed this across all subject areas including the foundation subjects.

We also provide a range of after school clubs which complement and enhance the learning opportunities available to the children.

How our curriculum is implemented

We have developed a Learning model based on excellent Primary practice. The cycle takes the children through a journey of linking to previous learning, developing vocabulary, modelling new learning, developing opportunities for children to learn together through the use of Challenge Partners, posing effective questions, identifying and correcting misconceptions, having a number of brain breaks and assessing progress. Teachers use well designed flips on the interactive whiteboards to access this journey.

The curriculum is accessible to all through appropriate differentiation and challenge. ‘Professor Prove it’ is embedded for deep learning to take place.

Teachers have good subject knowledge which enables them to deliver the content of each subject in an age appropriate way.

Live marking is used with lots of opportunities for oral feedback.

Learning characters are promoted (perseverance, curiosity, independence, co-operation and imagination). You will see the animals in every class!

Growth mind-set is promoted as we wish children to understand that intelligence is not fixed, to be excited by a challenge, to enjoy immersing themselves in difficult tasks, to relish feedback on their performance so they can improve, to react positively to failure by trying again and persevering, recognise intelligence can continually be improved through hard work and effort.

For Mathematics, we have introduced Maths Mastery in KS1. We are members of a maths research hub.

How we assess what we have done

Data collection is about ‘improving learning’, not ‘proving learning’. It is collected three times per year; i.e. at the end of each term. It is analysed and evaluated and action identified to determine future learning and interventions that some children may need, so that no child is left behind.