Curriculum Context & Rationale

Curriculum Context and Rationale

Our curriculum is designed to meet the requirements of the National Curriculum, whilst embedding the fundamental British values in our children; creating responsible citizens. We also firmly believe that all skills and knowledge are equally important and we encourage children to develop all the skills required for modern life; across the entire curriculum. Our units have a cross-curricular focus, with one main theme identified and all learning objectives are incorporated within this. Whilst there are some elements that have to be taught discretely, we aim to teach as much as possible through a cross-curricular vehicle, in order to make all learning meaningful. 

Our curriculum recognises that our school community is changing, in line with changes seen nationally. There is greater cultural diversity within our school community, with increasing numbers of children with English as an additional language and our curriculum recognises and celebrates this. 

Wellbeing is a significant factor in a child’s ability to learn and our school community is subject to a great many societal pressures. We pride ourselves on the wellbeing support that we give to our children and families and our curriculum actively teaches children to maintain their wellbeing, whilst educating on how their actions contribute to the well-being of others. 

Our curriculum offer includes enhanced provision for any child deemed to belong to a vulnerable group. Nationally recognised vulnerabilities such as deprivation, English as an additional language and special educational needs are explicitly addressed and, in addition, school leaders also identify vulnerabilities specific to our current circumstances. These may be specific to one cohort and will change from year to year, but the curriculum is constantly reviewed in order to be used as a tool to address any barriers to learning faced by these children. 

Principles and Purpose of our curriculum

The purpose of our curriculum is to inspire our children to dream, believe and achieve.

Dream

. to encourage aspiration in all

. provide an experience-rich curriculum that exploits every opportunity to promote aspiration (For example, an educational visit will focus on career opportunities available as well as having a curriculum-based focus)

.  to teach our children to aspire to a full, varied and enriching life by providing experiences that children wouldn’t otherwise obtain

Believe

.  to develop in children the inner confidence and resilience to be happy, safe and successful

. to promote the value of learning to our community, involving parents, governors and members of the local community and beyond

. to ensure that children understand and demonstrate the fundamental British values; displaying these in daily life 

Achieve

. for children to gain the necessary skills and knowledge to successfully access the national curriculum and subsequent education

. to create lifelong learners who understand the purpose and value of their learning

. to enable children to gain the necessary skills and understanding to be an active citizen who contributes effectively to global, multicultural communities

Entitlement  

Every child is recognised as a unique individual and we celebrate differences within our school community. We value all positive skills and attributes and encourage children to demonstrate skills beyond those that are purely academic. We recognise and celebrate all the attributes required to be successful citizens. We encourage and pursue an enjoyment of learning, an understanding that learning is challenging and the resilience to overcome these challenges. We also ensure that our curriculum promotes high aspirations and provides opportunities for innovation and entrepreneurialism. 

The school has a range of ‘entitlements’ that strive to ensure equality of opportunity for all. These offers detail how the school adapts and modifies provision in order that all children access learning opportunities equally. The school will, and does, positively discriminate to ensure that equality of opportunity exists within our community.  

Our curriculum map outlines the learning entitlement of each year group within the school and parents are given a more detailed overview for each unit of work. In addition, the school provides parents with the appropriate national curriculum objectives for their child each year, outlining the education each and every child is entitled to each year. 

Enrichment

Our curriculum is experience-rich and aims to enrich the learning and the lives of our children. As a school, we firmly believe that children need to ‘experience’ in order to effectively acquire knowledge and understanding. Our curriculum is founded on this principle. We use interesting contexts and memorable experiences as an aid to knowledge acquisition, understanding and retention of knowledge. We take every opportunity to ‘experience’ in order to enrich and enhance and these activities are planned as part of the children’s curriculum entitlement. All children are equally entitled to these opportunities, which can take many forms including using the local community and local area, school trips, residential visits, visitors to the school, outdoor learning and the use of artefacts. We call these WOW! experiences but we are very clear that these are not optional extras - there are the foundation upon which our curriculum is built. 

Our Entitlement to Enrichment map outlines these opportunities. 

Breadth and balance

.  our curriculum provides opportunities to gain and retain knowledge and skills in all areas of a broad and balanced national curriculum

. our curriculum provides opportunities for children to  demonstrate their understanding of a range of different cultures

.  our curriculum provides opportunities for children to apply their deep subject knowledge in innovative ways

.  our curriculum provides opportunities for children to learn appropriate and sophisticated vocabulary to communicate what they know

.  our curriculum provides opportunities for children to develop and demonstrate their creativity and critical thinking skills

.  our curriculum provides opportunities for children to solve problems and acquire a deeper understanding by reasoning

Implementation

Our teaching narratives are based on the Cornerstones Curriculum, in order to ensure that there is consistently high quality teaching and learning across the entire school. Our curriculum, and associated teaching narrative:

. enables children to see clear links between different aspects of their learning, having ensured that those links are clear and evident 

. enables children to learn within a coherent and progressive framework

. enables children to study a curriculum that excites, promotes and sustains their interests

. encourages, enables and fosters children’s natural curiosity

. enables children to learn in a range of meaningful ways, contexts and environments, through an 
  emphasis on experiences

. enables children to reflect on and evaluate their learning

. enables children to engage, develop, innovate and express their knowledge and understanding

Staverton Rd, Daventry, Northants, NN11 4HW 01327 705785 head@thegrange.northants-ecl.gov.uk

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