Our Curriculum Statement
We believe in our children and children are at the heart of everything we do. This defines the learning that is important for our children and our school. We believe there should be a greater emphasis on teaching the basic skills of reading, phonics, writing and maths and our curriculum reflects this belief.
It ensures that academic success, creativity and problem solving, reliability, responsibility and resilience, as well as physical development, well-being and mental health are key elements that support the development of the whole child and promote a positive attitude to learning.
The curriculum celebrates the diversity and utilises the skills, knowledge and cultural wealth of the community while supporting the pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. We expect all our children to be good Stanbridge citizens who understand the values of honesty, and trust and know how important it is to contribute to the community.
We have developed Programmes of Study which contain essential learning for each year group. Objectives are repeated so learning is deep rooted in everything we do. These are combined with the objectives for our school curriculum where we recognise and value the individuality of each child. The curriculum is also adapted to support SEND, vulnerable and disadvantaged groups of children as they progress through school making our curriculum accessible to all.
- Our curriculum provides: coherence – offering learning experiences which provide continuity creativity and progression for all pupils, depth – providing children with opportunities to revisit learning and apply their knowledge and skills to various challenges, activities etc. In this way learning is retained and becomes deep rooted, and relevant – by linking school work to pupils’ own experience
- Foundation subjects are then taught creatively to link learning experiences for children; enriching and extending their learning. We aim to create and sustain an inclusive environment where children feel safe, secure and confident enabling them to develop enquiring minds, become good learners and build on their successes.
- Having high expectations of children, where children are in an inclusive environment, where attendance is tracked and challenged is a consistent feature of our school and the curriculum.
- The curriculum will help the children become active, engaged members of society who care about their role as part of a family, community and the wider world; encouraging the children to have a good understanding of British Values and citizenship.
- The Early Years Curriculum will prepare children for their school journey by building on the prime skills of personal, social and emotional learning, the development of communication and language and a child’s physical development, along with four specific areas of learning: literacy; mathematics; expressive arts and design; and understanding the world. We believe good learning means giving young children chances to play and explore, where children investigate and experience things and are willing to have a go. We want children to be active in their learning where children concentrate and keep on trying when they encounter difficulties and enjoy their achievements. Creating and thinking critically are encouraged where children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things. This learning challenges children and encourages them to develop into independent, motivated learners and thinkers, full of curiosity about the world around them within a fun, happy and secure environment.
The Implementation of our Curriculum at Stanbridge
Early Years Foundation Stage
Children in Pre-school and Reception follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. All areas of the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum are taught across the week through directed activities (taught by a teacher), supported activities( teacher/LSA asks questions to probe understanding, extending thinking, extend play, helping to develop key skills eg holding a pencil) and independent activities (children practise and rehearse skills through chosen activity). The Early Years classrooms environments and ethos are designed to provide learning activities across the seven areas of learning listed below
Our Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum is based on seven areas of learning:
• Communication and Language
• Personal, Social and Emotional Development
• Physical Development
• Understanding of the World
• Expressive Arts and Design
Children in the Pre-school and Reception classes follow the Hygge approach to learning.
Hygge (pronounced hue-guh not hoo-gah) is a Danish approach to living well that focuses on being in the moment and embracing the feelings of warmth, simplicity and togetherness.
It’s about a space that promotes emotional well-being, togetherness and friendship. It’s a place children, can feel comfortable to snuggle down or explore with confidence and learn.
Miss Hughes the Reception teacher has worked hard to bring this approach into our school and take learning from the outside inside and vice versa. Our environment is a calming, cosy space for children to feel comfortable, secure and happy. We have strong links to nature where children are nurtured to learn and explore the world around them. Miss Hughes says “”Our provision is thoughtful and inspiring as we help children learn through their play”
Within a Hygge setting, there will be a calm relaxed feel to the play space with areas for children to retreat and get comfortable or cosy.
- View the environment through the eyes of the child.
- Invite children to create dens or cosy corners, with the use of drapes, voiles and blankets.
- Set up thoughtful nooks and well-appointed retreats, position them away from the main traffic within your setting.
- Provide children with a place to retreat away from the hustle and bustle of the main movement of the setting, allowing children privacy to talk, chat and interact.
- Provide plump cushions and blankets which enable children to get cosy when reading books or engaging in a provocation.
- Well appointed twinkly lights to add a sense of magic and wonder
- Lighting is soft and muted.
- Artificial light is kept to a minimum, use of table or standard lamps
- Reduction of noise levels, through soft furnishings.
- A range of textures.
- Provide opportunities to crawl inside an enclosed area where they feel secure.Provide seating where children can curl up with a nice book.
Children have opportunities to explore, enquire and to take risks through practical, hands-on learning experiences. Wander Lust planning engages the children in the outside world through topics, discussions and themes and allows the children to explore learning that interests them. At Stanbridge we have a high quality outside learning environment which the children are able to use throughout the day to take part in activities that are self initiated or directed by the teacher.
Phonics is taught daily and is repeated across the day in short intervals to help children master the letter names, letter sounds and formation of letters quickly. Phase 1-4 are taught across the Reception Year.
Implementation – Year 1:
The maps listed below show how the curriculum is implemented in Year 1. In addition to this phonics is taught daily and is repeated across the day in short intervals to help children master the different phases of phonics. Revision of the Reception Phases and Phase 5/6 are taught across Year 1. Homework supports learning: reading, maths and spelling homework is set weekly. English, Maths, RE, PE, PSHCE and Digital Computing are taught as stand alone subjects, all others are taught through creative topics.
Mini topics, celebrations and enrichment days are used to bring the topics to life.
Implementation – Year 2
The maps listed below show how the curriculum is implemented in Year 2. In addition to this phonics is taught daily and is repeated across the day in short intervals to help children master the different phases of phonics. Phase 5/6 are reinforced across Year 2. Homework supports learning: reading, maths and spelling homework is set weekly. English, Maths, RE, PE, PSHCE and Digital Computing are taught as stand alone subjects, all others are taught through creative topics.
Mini topics, celebrations and enrichment days are used to bring the topics to life.
Implementation – Year 3:
The maps listed below show how the curriculum is implemented in Year 3. Homework supports learning: reading, maths and spelling homework is set weekly. English, Maths, RE, PE, PSHCE and Digital Computing are taught as stand alone subjects, all others are taught through creative topics.
Mini topics, celebrations and enrichment days are used to bring the topics to life. Children in Year 3 receive swimming lessons at the local pool. Children in Year 3 are taught French. Children have specialist cookery lessons from a cookery teacher, as well as singing and ukulele lessons.
Implementation – Year 4:
The maps listed below show how the curriculum is implemented in Year 4. Homework supports learning: reading, maths and spelling homework is set weekly. English, Maths, RE, PE, PSHCE and Digital Computing are taught as stand alone subjects, all others are taught through creative topics.
Mini topics, celebrations and enrichment days are used to bring the topics to life. Children in Year 4 receive swimming lessons at the local pool. Children in Year 4 are taught French. Children have specialist cookery lessons from a cookery teacher, as well as singing and ukulele lessons.
Schemes in Use at Stanbridge
Phonics: Letters and Sounds
Reading: Oxford Reading Tree and Ginn
Our RE Curriculum follows the Bedfordshire Agreed Syllabus for RE 2018. The place of Religious Education in the lives of children and young people keeps changing. Some things are constant and every person, growing up, finds their own values and beliefs by which to live. The tensions of our differences are creative and fascinating for most of us, but occasionally they cause conflict. The place of religion in the modern world can be challenging. It is vital for our schools to help children and young people to develop their own ideas and ways of living, to learn to be reasonable about belief and religions and to be respectful to those who see the world differently. If everyone finds their own path in life, then the great religions of the world can act as guides. The daily assembly supports this learning through discussions relating to world religions, values, festivals and celebrations. For example – themes explored across the year are:
- My culture
- Helping others
- Similarities and Differences
- I am Jewish
- Special books and places
- My faith
- Stories from the Bible
- Chinese new year
Teaching British Values
We give pupils ‘first-hand experience of the diverse make-up of modern British society’ by teaching them respect for other faiths and developing their awareness and knowledge of communities different than their own.
We value the diverse ethnic backgrounds of all our pupils and throughout the year we hold a variety of events to celebrate these.
Music and Singing
Music and singing are an important aspect of life at our school. |It’s good for the soul and for our emotional wellbeing. It creates happy children. A great variety of music is played and celebrated in school each day. Children sing across all areas of the curriculum, at every opportunity. In lessons the children are given every opportunity to develop their musical skills and knowledge by studying the musical elements, looking at different types of music, performing, listening and appraising, singing, composing and playing instruments both tuned and untuned. Games and exploration make learning about music fun and enjoyable for the children. Children have the opportunity to receive musical tuition and can learn to play the piano, recorder, violin or flute. We are a Sing Up Play Out school and the children are given many opportunities in Yr 3 and 4 to sing and have drumming or ukulele lessons through trained music and singing teachers. Look out for our new choir….this is being launched in 2021.
We are very fortunate to have a large school field, a marked hard court, all weather area, as well as playground space, and all this space is used to encourage a positive attitude towards PE and sport. All children are taught skills and competencies in the five core areas of gym, dance, athletics, swimming and games. Coaches from different sports give children expert tuition across the year.
We are part of the School Sports Partnership which is purchased using our Sports Premium Funding and because of this the children from all key stages have access to many sporting competitions and festivals such as
- Tag Rugby competitions
- Football competitions
- Gym festivals
- Inclusion festivals
- Orienteering festivals
- Dance competitions
- Hockey competitions
- Cricket competitions
- Tri Golf competitions
- Netball competitions
- Sports Hall Athletic festivals
- Run for Fun festivals
- Young Leader Training
Staff receive expert coaching from the School Sports Partnership and so do the children. Annually our older children take part in a residential field trip where children can participate in more adventurous activities such as rock climbing, boating, sailing, orienteering, archery and low/high ropes. Swimming takes place in the autumn term for children in Yr 3/4. Lunchtime clubs run across the year for all children to take part in.
We believe the children should be educated to live in today’s society and they need to be able to make informed decisions on many issues, becoming citizens in their own right. We aim to teach them how to become socially aware about the needs of themselves and of others, be aware of personal safety, to be able to start to manage their finances, have a greater awareness of how to keep safe when working online, be part of a community, and to adopt healthy lifestyles. Sessions in PSHCE are presented at a level of understanding appropriate for the age of the children and circle times are used as discussion forums. This area links closely to RE and the teaching of British values. See above to view the PSHCE Curriculum Map.
Emotional Well Being
At Stanbridge Lower School, we place a great deal of importance to the emotional well being of our pupils. We have an Emotional Well being Lead teacher and a Family Liaison Officer who ensure children are supported well across their time at Stanbridge Lower School. All children are taught to “scale” their emotions and score their well being. This occurs at register time where the children will indicate on a scale of 1-10 how they are feeling. If they are feeling less than 5 children are given the opportunity to talk to someone about their thoughts and feelings. These discrete sessions are supported and complemented by a wealth of enrichment activities and the school’s comprehensive system of pastoral support. Lunchtime Club and our Nurture group, as well as interventions to support learning are all organised to support learning, as well as the emotional well being of our pupils.
This is taught within context during PSHCE and from September 2020 through Relationships Education and Science lessons. Relationships Education describes the teaching and learning we offer to the young people in our school, helping them to understand their own and others feelings and changes in their bodies and to develop skills for relationships and informed decision making. We believe that PSHCE and Relationships Education is the entitlement of all young people and we are committed to deliver it within the context of a broad and balanced programme of education. Please see our policy and the curriculum map for PSHCE and Relationships Education which shows further detail. From September 2020 parents do not have the right to withdraw their children from Relationships Education.
All Other Subjects and Extra Curricular Activities
All other subjects are taught through topics. We believe this is the best way to inspire and motivate children to learn and for teachers to teach. We use this approach so that children can make connections in their learning and make the learning relevant for the children. This enriches and extends their learning. We call this their Creative Learning Journey. All the plans for this can be viewed in the parents section of this website. Please click on Termly Plans.
We are extremely fortunate that many staff value the contribution made by other activities beyond the classroom. As a result a range of extra-curricular clubs and activities are offered all year round. These range from
- Student Council
- Year 4 Team Leaders
- The Great Stanbridge Sleepover
- sports clubs, such as Netball, dance, drama and football,
- Art and crafts clubs, Cinema club,
- The Stanbridge Bake Off,
- Big Cook, Little Cook lessons
- Focused History days eg Victorian day, Roman day
- Career’s Week
- Art in the Community Week,
- Craft week
- Science Day
- Chess Club
- Sing Up – singing lessons from a singing instructor
- Ukulele lessons – from the ukulele instructor
- Cooking lessons – from Kiddicook cooking teacher
- World Book Day
- Focused Art Days eg clay day, landscape drawing day, take one picture.
- Visits are arranged for all classes and include, amongst others, trips to the zoo, museums, places of interest
- A residential school journey to Grafham Water Centre for Yr 3 and 4 children where they take part in adventurous activities.
- Attendance at remembrance festival
- Shoe box appeal
- Red Nose Day
Pegasus Award for Year 3 and 4 children. Pegasus can remove barriers to learning and offer opportunities to people regardless of their age and ability. It provides a vehicle through which teachers, can reward effort and attainment in line with existing target-setting approaches. The children create their own targets to work towards and demonstrate their ability to persevere at a task, seeing it through to completion. This is a brilliant award for children to demonstrate their commitment towards learning, progressing and achieving and enables the children to become independent, good learners and build on their successes.
Achievements and progress are tracked in all curriculum subjects. Termly tests and teacher assessments are used to assess progress in reading, writing, grammar, phonics and maths. This ensures the teachers know who is making good progress towards their targets and who needs some extra support. Progress and attainment in foundation subjects are also tracked using our assessment systems. Children are encouraged to assess their own work through identifying what elements need improving and what elements they have achieved well at. From Year 3 they comment on what went well (www) and even better if (ebi). This enables the children to reflect on their own learning and know what they need to do to improve their work, especially in writing.
Reporting to Parents
Parent Consultations are held in the autumn and spring terms. In the summer term parents receive a full written report summarising their child’s achievements and progress across the year. An open afternoon is held in the summer term for parents to meet with their class teacher to discuss reports. Parents are able to come into school to look at their children’s work. This is a lovely occasion which we all look forward to.
Curriculum Impact – What do we want for our children?
At Stanbridge Lower School we have designed our curriculum for it to have the following impact on children…..
- Children’s attendance at school will be at least 98%+
- Children will reach their full potential gaining a firm understanding of reading, writing and maths, reaching their age related expectations across the curriculum and make the best possible progress.
- Children will gain skills and knowledge which helps them prepare for their future educational experiences.
- Children will engage with and enjoy their learning within a creative curriculum; taking part in lessons which are exciting and stimulating.
- Children will be good learners with enquiring minds who persevere.
- Children will become digitally aware, health aware and be able to realise the importance of looking after their emotional wellbeing to keep themselves safe and happy.
- Children will know how to be active, engaged members of society who care about their role as part of a family, community and the wider world; encouraging them to understand British Values and what it means to be a good citizen. They will know the difference between right and wrong, fair and unfair and know how to make the right choices.
- Children will feel safe, secure and confident in a sustained inclusive ethos where diversity and cultural identity are valued.
Finding Out More About Our Curriculum
If parents have any unanswered questions about the school curriculum they can contact their class teacher on 01525 210328.