At Jolesfield Church of England Primary School, we provide a rich curriculum where discovery, questioning and discussion facilitates the development of knowledge and skills. Becoming ‘word-rich’ through deliberate teaching and exposure to a wide range of vocabulary is at the heart of this. Our curriculum is underpinned by the National Curriculum but this is only the launch pad, as our broad and balanced curriculum far surpasses these objectives. Our school and Christian values of: kindness, positivity, team work, thankfulness and respect are intertwined and links are explicitly made through a range of subject areas in order to strengthen and embed these values in our pupils. We want our children to grow as citizens as well as learners.
In Key Stage 1, we primarily follow a thematic curriculum which allows for a deep embedding of knowledge. Subjects are mainly taught discretely in Key Stage 2 but links are made where appropriate. Our curriculum is personalised and creative as children have frequent opportunities to extend beyond the National Curriculum and follow their own lines of enquiry. Both these approaches ensure balance and progression across the school. We are aspirational as children are encouraged to see themselves as geographers or scientists. Keeping learning purposeful is a priority. Teaching staff use questions and examples to help children draw links between subject areas and understand the wider application of skills and knowledge to different ‘real-life contexts.’
We create unit plans linked to progression of knowledge documents. These focus on the end points of learning by identifying the knowledge and skills, which children will acquire by the end of a unit. Prior learning is taken into account. This ensures our curriculum has a progressive structure layering knowledge and skills so pupils gradually know more, remember more and are able to do more
Our inclusive pedagogy ensures an approach to teaching which is accessible to all learners. Rather than planning a curriculum with a predetermined judgement of capacity, we have an open-ended view of a pupil’s potential and seek to understand every individual’s strengths and areas of development. Collaborative learning is highly valued so children can learn and be challenged by each other. On-going assessment for learning ensures teaching is responsive and adaptable to the needs of all learners. In addition, all children are encouraged to independently access a range of resources to scaffold their own learning.
Our inspiring curriculum further enriches the cultural capital of every child through a significant number of trips and visitors. These are carefully planned experiences chosen to deepen and broaden learning. Memorable experiences shared together help strengthen bonds between children as well as creating a context for meaningful learning and providing new opportunities for personal development. Visits to museums, orchestras, theatres and art galleries as well as opportunities to join events such as the Chanctonbury Music Festival help inspire by exposing children to the best of human creativity.
Finally, we believe that learning is fun. Through our curriculum, we plan active, hands-on learning experiences helping to ensure children are excited and invested in their own learning.