Curriculum Design

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The children are at the heart of all we do and individual needs and interests are taken into account as we design our curriculum. We encourage our children to have high aspirations and to ‘be the best that they can be’.

The design of our Curriculum reflects our distinctive Christian character and our UNICEF Rights Respecting ethos. Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural development along with British Values are fundamental to our work and we ensure that opportunities to explore and promote these are maximised.

Click for more information about our Vision and Values.

Click for more information about British Values.

We believe that every child should have the skills they need to thrive during their school years and beyond. The ‘Secrets of Success’ behaviour for learning philosophy underpins all lessons and encourages children to develop skills such as  perseverance, resilience, imagination and understanding.

Click for more information about our Secrets of Success.

The Learning Challenge Curriculum

From Nursery to Year 6 we have developed our Learning Challenge Curriculum. This approach ensures our curriculum is rich, engaging and relevant. It promotes an enquiry based approach to learning and develops the skills of thinking and questioning. Each year group has developed topics to encompass relevant National Curriculum objectives, whilst inspiring imagination and creating enthusiasm. Topics include WOW events and periods of reflection. Educational visits and visitors into school are an important aspect of our curriculum and are used to broaden and deepen the children’s understanding of the themes we teach.

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The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum

The curriculum framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (Nursery & Reception) classes consists of 7 Areas of Learning and Development, divided into ‘prime’ and ‘specific’ areas. These areas cover the knowledge and skills which build the foundations for successful learning and future progress.

At Priory, children experience all areas of learning through a play based and engaging curriculum. Direct teaching is used effectively to develop basic skills in reading, writing and maths and to ensure children are ready for the next stage of their education.

Prime – Communication and language: development involves giving children opportunities to experience a rich language environment, develop their confidence and skills in expressing themselves and to speak and listen in a range of situations.

Prime – Physical development: this involves providing opportunities for young children to be active and interactive. It helps to develop their co-ordination, control and movement. Children must also be helped to understand the importance of physical activity, and to make healthy choices in relation to food.

Prime – Personal, social and emotional development: this involves helping children to develop a positive sense of both themselves and others around them. It helps them to form positive relationships and develop respect for others; to develop social skills and learn how to manage their feelings; to understand appropriate behaviour in groups; and to have confidence in their own abilities.

Specific – Literacy: development involves encouraging children to link sounds and letters, helping them begin to read and write. Children must be given access to a wide range of reading materials (books, poems, and other written materials) to help ignite their interest.

Specific – Mathematics: this involves providing children with opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, calculating simple addition and subtraction problems and to help them describe shapes, spaces and measures.

Specific – Understanding the world: this involves guiding children to make sense of their physical world and their community by providing opportunities to explore, observe and find out about people, places, technology and the environment.

Specific – Expressive arts and design: this involves enabling children to explore and play with a wide range of media and materials, as well as providing opportunities and encouragement for sharing their thoughts, ideas and feelings through a variety of activities in art, music, movement, dance, role-play and design and technology.

Click for more information about our Early Years

Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 (Year 1 to 6)

The National Curriculum areas for Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 are: English, Maths, Science, History, Geography, Design & Technology, Computing, PE, Music, Art & Design, RE, PSHE and Languages (KS2 only).

Click for more information about the National Curriculum.

Curriculum Drivers

Within each year group, each topic of our engaging, enquiry based Learning Challenge Curriculum, has a Science, Geography or History ‘driver’.  The subjects’ content is used to scaffold and support the rest of the curriculum areas to focus and ‘drive’ the children’s learning forward.  This ensures coverage and progression throughout the school, but also allows for wide range of varied and stimulating topics that challenge the children’s thinking and encourage them to explore and investigate.  We believe that each subject has many inter-relatable skills and our approach allows the children to make these links naturally and apply them in a range of ways.

Click for more information about our Key Stage 1 curriculum.

Click for more information about our Lower Key Stage 2 curriculum.

Click for more information about our Upper Key Stage 2 curriculum.

Basic Skills

We give high priority to the development of basic skills in reading, writing and maths. These skills are fundamental to allow children to thrive at school and to have positive life chances. Interesting Apps and resources provide opportunities for children to compete against themselves and others, which in turn creates enthusiasm and engagement e.g. TT Rockstars, Rapid Recall, Accelerated Reader, Spelling Shed.

English

A wide range of rich, exciting and stimulating texts are at the center of all our topics. This creates a literacy rich environment that promotes a love of communication, drama, reading and writing.  The children get ‘inside’ the text with some oral rehearsal, reading and comprehension activities, drama and role play and then use the skills that they have picked up from the text as a stimulus to writing.

English lessons focus on:

  • developing a life-long love of reading, alongside reading skills and comprehension
  • giving pupils to chance to experience and appreciate texts that they may otherwise not access
  • gaining a secure grounding in phonics
  • deepening understanding with drama and speaking and listening activities
  • developing and mastering grammar, punctuation, spelling and vocabulary skills
  • writing for a range of purposes and audiences
  • editing writing to allow publication of final piece

Accelerated Reader

All children have their own interests and hobbies; now, more than ever at Priory, thanks to Accelerated Reader (AR), our children can select a from a vast range of books that appeal to them personally, whilst specifically targeting their own personal development needs. Children select their own books, from within their own development range (ZPD) and then take part in exciting quizzes to demonstrate their understanding.  These quizzes reward the children with points where they can compete against themselves, or with classmates.  We are also on the hunt for our first word millionaire: who will be the first to read 1,000,000 words in total? (AR tracks this and allows the children to monitor their own progress).

Click for more information about our English curriculum.

Mathematics

A strong foundation in Maths broadens opportunities for success throughout life.  Hands-on learning using manipulatives helps mathematical thinking progress from concrete (objects or things), to pictoral (representations or images), to the abstract (calculations and written methods).  Children of all ages within Priory are encouraged to play, explore and develop their own mathematical understanding in-order to improve their basic number sense, critical thinking and reasoning skills: we do everything that we can to promote and facilitate ‘deep’ understanding at Priory.

We also utilise technology to stimulate the young minds of the modern world, a variety of Apps and in class resources add to the subject and help to support and focus those that need it (and those that enjoy it). E.g. TT Rockstars has been a huge hit at Priory, our times tables skills are rocking hard and improving fast!

Click for more information about our Maths curriculum, TT Rockstars and other online resources). 

Extra – Curricular Activities & Music Lessons

In addition to the main curriculum, there are activities organised as a valuable extension to the school day. We have a range of clubs including football, gymnastics, archery, bubble sports, martial arts, dance, art, maths and science amongst others.

In addition to their curriculum music lessons, children are offered the chance to learn a musical instrument. Children can learn the guitar, woodwind instruments, piano or drums.

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