Mowmacre Hill Primary Curriculum Statement 2018-2019
Our curriculum has been designed with P.S.H.E. at its heart, giving the children the tools to become citizens of the future. It is based around 7 key themes taught across the school. These are:
- Money Management
- Healthy Me
- Respect for yourself and others
- Jobs and Aspirations
- Understanding myself
These themes are taught in engaging ways, incorporating the national curriculum and some aspects of the Cornerstones curriculum where appropriate. All topics are based on the children’s interests and starting points are collated before each topic is planned.
As a whole school, we provide a creative curriculum based around the "Cornerstones Curriculum".
What is the Cornerstones Curriculum?
The Cornerstones Curriculum is a creative and thematic approach to learning that is mapped to the new 2014 Primary National Curriculum to ensure comprehensive coverage of national expectations. It is delivered through Imaginative Learning Projects (ILPs) which will provide a rich menu of exciting and motivating learning activities that make creative links between all aspects of the children’s learning.
Children will progress through four distinct stages of learning in each ILP
At the "Engage" stage, children:
- Enjoy ‘WOW’ experiences.
- Get an exciting introduction to a topic or theme
- Begin researching and setting enquiry questions
- Make observations.
- Have lots of fun to fully 'engage' with their topic.
At the "Develop" stage, children:
- Improve their knowledge and understanding of the topic.
- Develop and practice their new skills.
- Compose, make, do, build, investigate, explore, write for different purposes, research and read across the curriculum.
- Follow new pathways of enquiry based on their interests.
At the "Innovate" stage, children:
- Apply skills, knowledge and understanding in real-life contexts
- Solve real or imagined problems using everything they’ve learnt.
- Revisit anything not fully grasped at the ‘Develop’ stage.
At the "Express" stage, children:
- Become the performers, experts and informers.
- Share their achievements with parents, classmates and the community.
- Link what they have learnt to where they started
- Celebrate their achievements.
How does it work at Mowmacre Hill Primary?
In order to ensure full coverage of the curriculum, teachers plan from the National Curriculum objectives for their year group and select exciting Cornerstones activities which meet the needs of our children and incorporate them with their own ideas. The P.S.H.E. theme is always at the forefront of their minds and shapes the whole topic. We follow the 4 phases of learning outlined in Cornerstones for each topic, giving the children consistency in the approach. As well as P.S.H.E. subjects taught within the topics include:
- Art and Design
- Design and Technology
We believe children learn better when they are encouraged to use their imagination and apply their learning to engaging contexts. Our new curriculum provides lots of learning challenges throughout the academic year that will require children to experience their learning, solve problems, apply themselves creatively and express their knowledge and understanding effectively across the curriculum.
As well as learning the knowledge and understanding associated with the topics, we believe that it is vital to teach the children how to become good learners. These skills are embedded throughout all learning so that the children have mastered them as they move onto secondary school and beyond.
Our 9 learning powers are:
- Building Friendships
- Enjoyment of Learning
This is taught in discrete Religious Education weeks timetabled throughout the year. They often coincide with religious festivals. A range of religions are covered, following the Leicester City guidance.
Computing is taught in discrete lessons weekly, following the computing curriculum. I.T. skills are incorporated into topics where appropriate to supplement this. Online safety is taught across the school in termly sessions. It is also a focus for Safer Internet week in February each year.
At Mowmacre Hill Primary School, we plan mathematics using National Curriculum 2014, using the Affinity Teaching School’s Mathematics Calculation Policy and Maths No Problem which clearly set out a model to a ‘mastery’ Mathematics curriculum.
Our mathematics curriculum equips pupils with tools that include the ability to calculate securely in all four operations, a comprehensive understanding of the number system, problem-solving skills, and the ability to think in abstract ways. It is designed to enable children to learn key skills, practice, consolidate and apply them and then to master them. Children learn about mathematics wherever possible in a context so that they understand how it relates to real life.
During the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Curriculum, mathematics forms part of many interactive learning experiences. Pupils develop their knowledge and understanding of mathematics through play, exploration and discussion. They learn to count, read, write and order numbers to 20 using songs and rhymes, which is extended to 100 and beyond during The National Curriculum in Key Stage 1. They work with shapes, learning their properties; use language to give positional clues and compare quantities, identify and recreate patterns. Mathematics in EYFS is very practical and includes indoor and outdoor learning.
During Key Stage 1, mathematics lessons include mental mathematics starters which are designed to be faster paced and enable children to calculate mentally as fast as they can. In their main lesson, they learn how the number system works and learn strategies for calculating with all four operations. Additionally they learn about shape and space, through practical activity which builds on their understanding of their immediate environment. They develop their use of mathematical language, using it to talk about their methods and explain their reasoning when solving problems.
During Key Stage 2, children move to calculating fluently with all four number operations, moving to formal traditional methods throughout the Key Stage. Children use a wider range of mathematical language and expected to articulate their reasoning about mathematics clearly, using precise mathematical language. A large focus is on problem solving and in all areas of the mathematics curriculum, problem solving skills are developed and built upon.
At Mowmacre Hill we use English to communicate in both written and spoken form. We use language to build our view and opinion of the world and our community. We believe that developing a love of our language in our children is vital in achieving success at school and later in life. The exploration and enjoyment of the English language is our priority and we value all its aspects – speaking, listening, reading and writing. English is taught daily across the whole school with work appropriately differentiated to match all abilities. There are also specific lessons in spelling, vocabulary, handwriting and reading.
Speaking and Listening
Talking is fundamental to learning. Pupils are encouraged to speak clearly, confidently and with expression in order to state their ideas and opinions. Just as important, is the need to listen carefully to others and respond in appropriate ways. At Mowmacre Hill Primary, pupils are given opportunities in all areas of the curriculum to develop their speaking and listening skills, in paired, group or whole class situations. Therefore, role play, poetry recital and drama are key elements of speaking and listening across the school.
Children who read for pleasure gain a richer vocabulary, more knowledge, critical thinking skills and become independent learners. Guided Reading is an important part of our curriculum. Children work as a whole class and in focused groups to develop their reading skills and their understanding of texts. We focus on the specific reading skills of word reading, fluency and language comprehension. We provide children with rich reading experiences within the English lessons and encourage them to appreciate the author’s use of language and writing techniques in order to develop their own writing skills. Our children take their reading books home daily to share with their families/carers. As they go through the school, they are given more responsibility for making their own reading choices from the excellent resources we have in school. We are beginning to use Accelerated Reader to allow the children to use a digital programme to aid their language comprehension skills.
We place great value on the importance of spelling. A structured programme of spelling extends across the whole school, beginning with Read Write Inc Phonics in EYFS and KS1 moving into the Mowmacre Hill Spelling programme from year 2 all the way through to year 6.
At Mowmacre Hill we aim for children to be independent writers. We encourage them to write clearly and with confidence in any given genre. We teach them to use punctuation and grammar accurately, to be able to proofread their own work and make amendments and improvements. We place value on the development of correct letter formation and neatly presented handwriting. We give children a wide range of opportunities in which to develop their writing skills and display work of which they are proud. Through our English curriculum, we aim to nurture in the children a love of literature and language, and the confidence to continue reading and writing throughout their lives.
Handwriting is of fundamental importance to educating our pupils because pupils who do not learn to read and write fluently and confidently are, in every sense, disenfranchised. The mastery of handwriting is therefore one of the key priorities of the school. Mowmacre Hill follow the national framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS), Key Stage 1 (KS1) and Key Stage 2 (KS2) and the handwriting requirements of that framework apply in full to the school. Handwriting is a physical activity that involves movement and recognition skills that need to be learnt and become part of the automatic cognitive skill set of the pupil. To achieve this, Mowmacre Hill Primary School has chosen the Kinetic Letters handwriting programme.
Physical Education develops children’s physical skills, confidence, capabilities and potential. It gives opportunities for children to be creative and competitive while learning to work with and respect others. At Mowmacre Hill Primary School children learn how to plan, perform and evaluate actions, often in pairs and small groups, helping them to develop the quality and effectiveness of their work. We promote a positive attitude towards active lifestyles and aim to introduce children to lifelong physical activity.
In addition to being taught by their class teacher children across the school are also taught by our sports teacher, Mr Boulger. Our aspiration is for all children to do a minimum of 2 sessions of PE a week.
The school runs a range of after school clubs which involve children in competitive and friendly sporting fixtures. These include dance, rugby, tennis and football. The school plays competitive sport in the local leagues and against other schools in the Discovery Trust. We are proud to have several children representing the city and county, having accessed trials through the school. Our partnership with Leicester City Football Club allows us to identify talented athletes and give them opportunities to develop their skills.
The documents below provide a more detailed look at our current school curriculum: