Definition of Learning
In our school we see learning as the process of acquiring knowledge, skills and understanding through investigation, discovery, guidance and reflection.
The curriculum includes all the planned activities that we plan and teach in school in order to promote learning, personal growth and development. It includes not only the formal requirements of the National Curriculum 2014, but also the range of visits and visitors to school that the school organises in order to enrich the experience of the children. We aim to teach children how to grow intellectually, morally, spiritually and physically in a caring Christian community. We seek to help children achieve their full potential by encouraging a love of learning and the development of self-esteem and confidence. At secondary school, subjects are most often taught separately, for example History and English would not normally be taught together. We believe in the value of a creative curriculum or topic led curriculum. This is where a specific, wide ranging topic is taught for a half term or more, for example World War Two, so that the children make many more connections in their learning, making it more interesting, enjoyable and meaningful. We also include the children’s interests when planning topic content, so that the learning is relevant and meaningful to them. At Warter we believe that memorable learning takes place outside the classroom – we make use of our outstanding school grounds, the local area and educational visits to create a primary education that will stay with the children well into adulthood.
Throughout the teaching of our primary curriculum, we make our school values explicit through our behaviour policy, collective worship and through relationships within school and the local community. The 12 Christian values of generosity,compassion,courage,forgiveness,friendship,respect,thankfulness,trust,perseverance,justice,service and truthfulness form the foundations of our collective worship. Of those, Warter has chosen their favourites which form our school values of: friendship, respect and hope. Interwoven with these values are the British Values of respect, rule of law, democracy, liberty, respect and tolerance we aim to instill in our children.
Organisation and Planning
At Warter the school is organised into 5 classes including the Warter Babies Foundation Stage Unit and each class contains 2 year groups. The teachers have worked together to create a long term plan overview for each class with a two year spiral curriculum (Appendix 1) taken from the new national curriculum programmes of study. Red Kites, Owls, Kestrels and Merlins have termly topics. These topics are based on the main subject areas of History, Geography and Science. There are also continuous objectives which may be taught across a range of subjects, for example art objectives could be taught during the Victorians topics or a geographical topic on mountains. The detailed objectives for each topic are listed in Appendix 2. At the start of each term a parent newsletter is sent home to inform and support learning at home (class newsletters can be found on the website). Teachers complete their own medium and short term plans which contain learning objectives, success criteria, groupings, differentiation and information on resources.
Phonics, reading and mathematics.
In the foundation stage and key stage 1 we teach children to read using a synthetic phonics approach. To enable a progression of learning we follow the Letters and Sounds phonic programme and the on line Lexia phonic programme for individual personalised learning. The children are taught to read using the Oxford Tree Reading scheme which is supplemented with colour banded books at a similar level of difficulty.
In mathematics key stage 1 follow the Oxford Inspire scheme of work with key stage 2 following the Collins Mathematics scheme.
The Warter Babies - The Early Years Foundation Stage
The early years foundation stage (EYFS) sets standards for the learning, development and care of children from birth to 5 years old. Early years learning concentrates on 7 areas split between prime and specific areas of learning.
The prime areas of learning are:
- communication and language
- physical development
- personal, social and emotional development
The specific areas of learning are:
- understanding the world
- expressive arts and design
Teaching is usually done through play, where the child learns about subjects and other people through games, practical experiences and child initiated tasks. Half termly topics draw directly from the children’s experiences, for example the seashore. Teachers also plan activities based on the children’s interests.
At Warter we use the Chris Quigley Essentials package for the core and foundation subjects. These use milestones which are grouped into two yearly intervals – which fit exactly with our class structure in school.
In addition we assess each half term the achievements and progress of children in mathematics, phonics, reading, grammar, writing and science using the Rising Stars assessment materials. Children in year 3, 4 and 5 will take the optional SATS assessments in June each year. Children in year 2 and year 6 will be assessed using the SATS.
Class Curriculum (Termly) Newsletters, Medium and Long Term Plans
If you would like further information about the curriculum Warter C.E. Primary School is following, please contact Paula Harris on 01759 302061.