Mary Elton Primary School

Mary Elton Primary School

Values and Community based Curriculum

Intention

Introduction

Our Curriculum is called our Values and Community based Curriculum. It is based on our school values and has our community at its heart.

At Mary Elton School we want our children to be curious, life-long learners who can work collaboratively and excel in their learning journey. We have designed and woven into our Curriculum, opportunities for our children to experience what it is to be an active local and global citizen.

The teaching and learning at our school is of a high standard and is well planned and managed so that every child is supported and challenged. We enable children to take an active part in their own learning. We believe that pupils must understand the what and why of their learning: where they are in relation to their learning and it is vital that they can explain what it is that they have achieved.

Rationale

We adhere to the EYFS and National Curriculum.

Within this we have designed bespoke elements that:

  • Reflect the Opportunities and Challenges that our communities and locality bring to our school.
  • Weave our Learning Values through all that we do.
  • Create Independence in our children and create a moral framework to become proactive and healthy citizens.

The curriculum is designed by the staff and Local Governing Board of Mary Elton Primary School. The curriculum is guided and supported by the pupils, Clevedon Learning Trust, parents and the community.

What do we mean by Values?

School Motto: Achievement by Caring. This is long standing and at the heart of the school.

Our Learning Values are the 5Cs: Collaborative, Critical Thinker, Courageous, Curious and Creative. These were distilled and designed by teachers and pupils and provide the framework from which our curriculum can thrive.

Our School Rules: Ready – Respectful – Safe. These are simple unifying rules for staff, pupils and parents.

Our principle of Teaching and Learning: Opportunities, Challenge and Independence. These are the essence of our children’s learning journey.

  • Opportunities – all children at Mary Elton are provided with high quality experiences; they know their learning journey and develop a passion for learning.
  • Challenge – all children at Mary Elton are supported to reach their learning outcomes. We develop the language of 'not yet' (‘not yet’ refers to our belief that all our children can achieve given the correct support; ‘I can’t do that yet, but I can learn to do it’) and set challenging goals for our children.
  • Independence – all children strive for independent learning. We use rich questioning, self-differentiation and children are self-managers and seek feedback.

What do we mean by Community?

Mary Elton strives to draw on all our communities and on our locality to enhance all our children’s learning experiences. We have many partners and stakeholders – such as parents, local companies, organisations and individuals – who help to bring the real world into our school and therefore better enhance the learning of our children. We take our children out into our locality and also develop international links to help their understanding of their world. We offer our children a global dimension to their learning through our links with schools in France, Reunion Island and Tanzania.

Ethos and Vision of our Curriculum

We want:

  • All our children to achieve fulfillment by enabling them to excel in their learning journey.
  • A literacy rich school; we value the importance of oracy and the power of a variety of books to support learning within and across the curriculum.
  • To provide a curriculum that keeps our children healthy and safe: emotionally and physically.
  • To provide a curriculum that ensures a planned and coherent set of steps.
  • To optimise the potential and increase the life chances of all our pupils.
  • To provide a structured, knowledge rich curriculum that leads to sustained mastery for all and supports opportunities for a greater depth of understanding.
  • To ensure our staff receive appropriate training, and ongoing support so that workload is always managed, to optimise the delivery of the curriculum.
  • Our values and community to help create an enriched curriculum that is exciting in breadth and depth and has a strong emphasis on hands-on practical work and experiences.
  • The structure of the curriculum to ensure there are opportunities to revisit past learning and so embed understanding.
  • Our curriculum to embrace outdoor learning opportunities so as to support wellbeing and understanding of our natural world.
  • Our International and STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) links to create opportunities that challenge our children and create independence of thought and action.
  • Our children to help drive our curriculum through Pupil Voice.
  • Well planned and timely visits and visitors to augment classroom learning.
  • We want our curriculum to be flexible so as to be able to seize quality opportunities that arise to reinforce or introduce children to aspects of learning.
  • Our children to leave our school as confident citizens, who can use the knowledge they have acquired to collaborate, think critically, have the courage to be themselves and support others, are curious and are creative lifelong learners.
  • Our children to have a global perspective and understand how they can play their part in supporting the UN sustainable goals.

Children with Special Needs and/ or a Disability

The curriculum within our school is designed to provide access and opportunity for all children who attend.

If we think it is necessary to adapt the curriculum to meet the needs of individual children, then we will do so only after the parents of the child have been consulted. Interventions, adaptations and differentiated teaching will then be delivered where appropriate. (Please refer to our SEND policy.)

At Mary Elton Primary School, we believe that each of our children have individual and unique needs. However, some children require more support than others do. If these children are to achieve their full potential, we must recognise this and plan accordingly. We acknowledge that a significant proportion of children will have special educational needs at some time in their school career. Some of these children may require help throughout their time in school, whilst others may need extra support for a short period to help overcome more short term needs.

For children with Special Educational Needs and/or a disability (in addition to the whole school aims) we strive:

  • To enable every child to experience success
  • To promote individual confidence and a positive attitude
  • To ensure that all children, whatever their special educational needs or disability, receive appropriate educational provision through a broad and balanced curriculum that is relevant and differentiated, that demonstrates coherence and progression in learning. Our school is committed in making reasonable adjustments to meet children’s individual needs
  • To provide children with special educational needs equal opportunities to take part in all aspects of the school's provision, to involve parents, carers and children themselves in planning and supporting at all stages of their development
  • To ensure that responsibility held by all staff and Governors for SEND is implemented and maintained
  • To ensure achievement by caring is available to all

Implementation

We have devised a Curriculum that has the flexibility to optimise new learning opportunities that may present themselves. This enables us to provide our children with engaging learning experiences that excites their imagination and challenges them. We have planned for and enabled a rich and diverse curriculum, linked to the real world and our communities. It teaches children important key knowledge and skills, attitudes, and a love of learning which encourages children to think outside the box.

The teaching and learning at our school is of a high standard and is well planned and managed so that every child is supported and challenged. We enable children to take an active part in their own learning. We believe that pupils must understand what and why of their learning, where they are in relation to their learning and it is vital that they can explain what it is that they have achieved.

Our Curriculum is outward looking and embraces our wider community. We engage with parents, industry, local organisations, and individuals to bring the real world into our school. We offer our children a global dimension to their learning through our links with schools in France, Reunion Island and Tanzania. All our links and aspects of our curriculum that we have developed and build on are designed to enrich our children’s understanding of the world. Our curriculum also takes us out in to our local community and enhances our children’s social emotional development, as well as promoting oracy skills and offering children depth and breadth of understanding. We want our children to realise, through our curriculum that they can impact positively on their world.

Mary Elton delivers an enriched and diverse curriculum.  Children are able to access a wide range of sporting activities, many exciting STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths) activities and through our extensive grounds we offer great outdoor learning opportunities. Music also features prominently within our curriculum. We offer two residential activities and our schools visits encompass an array of opportunities.

The Curriculum Journey

The curriculum is a major focus for our school and is on a 2 year journey. We are currently developing our Curriculum so that:

  • We ensure our School Values drive our Curriculum.
  • We fully integrate our local and global communities into our Curriculum.
  • We embed knowledge and enable children to link concepts across and within subjects.
  • As a school there is enhanced cohesion of what is taught where.
  • There is progression of concepts, skills and vocabulary.
  • All staff have a clearer overview of our Curriculum.
  • Children will have the opportunities to revisit previous learning and relate it to new learning.
  • Parents/carers and pupils can understand the learning process and can be supported on the next steps for their children’s learning in and out of school.
  • We have enhanced accuracy in our assessment of The Foundation Subjects.

To support these aims we have embarked on producing Knowledge Organisers. These are one page sheets that summarise topic information, facts to be learnt, vocabulary, next steps and opportunities to explore. These will be available to parents/carers and staff, with the aim of embedding understanding. Knowledge organisers will appear on our website in 2020.

Impact

We believe too we are creating a Curriculum that is fully inclusive and designed to challenge fixed mind sets and ensures we offer a unique and broad range of experiences. We ensure that we review our provision annually, as we endeavour to provide all our children with skills and the knowledge needed to lead fulfilling lives, where they can engage as active local and global citizens. We look to the next stages of our children’s learning journey and assess the effectiveness of what we provide. We are a learning organisation and have clear next steps. So our 2 year programme to create knowledge organisers, will enhance the embedding of knowledge, support parents/carers in the learning process and ensure enhanced delivery of our curriculum.

As a school that looks to offer our children an enhanced curriculum, we are able to support local schools with outreach work and work national organisations to guide curriculum initiatives. We are then able to use these opportunities to reflect and act on our own curriculum.

Topic Overview - currently under review