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Helme Curriculum KS1 and KS2

Intent

At Helme C of E Academy we strive to offer a curriculum that is broad and balanced and gives each child the best possible start. We deliver the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum, National Curriculum 2019 and the Leeds Diocese RE syllabus, including the Understanding Christianity Programme. Alongside these we offer a broad range of additional learning experiences such as outdoor learning, visitors to school and off-site visits. Our curriculum is underpinned by our Christian ethos and vision, allowing the opportunity for everyone to flourish.

 

Implementation

At Helme C of E Academy, our curriculum is planned through topic based themes on a two or three year rolling programme. Cross curricular links are explored to enhance, excite and form connections in the children’s knowledge and understanding. Where necessary this is supplemented by discrete lessons to ensure full coverage of the National Curriculum. Each topic has an initial key question which the children work towards answering. During the topic children are given the opportunity to develop and answer their own questions to deepen their learning.

In EYFS we plan our environment to support our chosen topic, dependent on children’s interests. EYFS at Helme C of E Academy promotes and values all areas of learning. Our EYFS curriculum prepares the children for the next stage of their learning in Year 1.

English, including phonics and spelling and Maths are taught daily. We have a clear structure for the teaching of writing to ensure key skills are embedded and this starts in EYFS. Phonics is taught using the outline of Letters and Sounds and is systematically taught on a daily basis, with additional support for some children. Reading is taught using synthetic phonics; moving from individual reading to small group reading and then in KS2, whole class reading, this ensures we are able to develop fluency in Reading as well as embed the skills which are needed to comprehend. Reading and writing have a strong emphasis through the whole curriculum.

Maths is taught using the White Rose concepts of Concrete, Pictorial and Abstract. At Helme C of E Academy we understand the necessity for children to have a secure understanding and a good level of fluency in the meaning of number before moving on to reasoning and problem solving.

The approach to teaching at Helme C of E Academy is that of quality first teaching, with the addition of small interventions when necessary. These are vital for some pupils in order for them to develop key skills and then being able to use them across the curriculum.

As we are a small school, we teach many lesson in mixed age classes. There are huge social and cognitive benefits of children working with older and younger pupils. We understand that children have an uneven development pattern and mixed age classes enable children to develop at their own pace. Our mixed age classes also develop a sense of community across school, there is no segregation of ages. At some point in their school lives, our pupils have the opportunity to be the oldest, youngest and middle children: leadership becomes natural. In the afternoon, KS2 move into two learning groups: LKS2 and UKS2, this allows the children to come back together as a year group.

At Helme C of E Academy we have planned the use of outdoor learning across a variety of curriculum areas. The school grounds are not only used to enhance classroom learning but to teach new skills and techniques in lessons such as Art, Science, DT and Maths. Each class has a weekly forest school outdoor learning session to ensure this is a key element of a child’s learning and development at Helme, beyond the academic.

To ensure our curriculum is well planned and delivered, subject leaders are supported and given training to enable them to develop their own subject knowledge and keep abreast of new developments to better support colleagues in providing quality first teaching.

Throughout the year we have theme days, weeks, visits, visitors and whole school learning activities which enrich and enhance the learning in school. These are carefully planned in to capture memorable learning moments for the children.

Our curriculum is constantly evolving to match the needs of the children, their families and our community. We are developing a curriculum that transcends the classroom, where children are empowered to be the best they can be

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Impact

Impact

The impact of our curriculum is systematically monitored, evaluated and reviewed by leaders, pupils, parents, governors to ensure we use the curriculum to ensure high expectations and to drive continuous successful outcomes for all.

Questions which are asked:

Does the curriculum…

  1. Embed our Christian ethos and vision?
  2. Provide challenge for all?
  3. Lead to high quality outcomes?
  4. Provide equality?
  5. Provide enrichment?
  6. Develop positive learning behaviours?

Is the curriculum…?

  1. Inclusive?
  2. Relevant?
  3. Responsive?
  4. Coherent?
  5. Broad and balanced?
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