Our Exciting Curriculum
Key statutory curriculum requirements for academies:
Academies are required to have a broad and balanced curriculum which promotes the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils and prepares them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life.
For pupils in the Foundation Stage, academies are required to follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS).
While academies are not required to follow the National Curriculum they are required to ensure their curriculum:
- includes English, maths and science;
- includes Religious Education, although the nature of this will depend on whether the school has a faith designation;
- includes sex and relationship education
In light of the curriculum freedoms we receive as an academy, at Sampford Peverell we have been planning and delivering creative learning. The children’s learning is embedded within a ‘Theme’, sometimes this is a Key Stage Topic other times it is a whole school theme. Children are encouraged to make links between subjects, developing knowledge, skills and positive attitudes to learning in a range of contexts.
A Theme Approach
The children at Sampford Peverell are active participants in offering suggestions for Themes to study or with suggesting questions to explore within the Theme given. Themes are generated with the children’s interests, local community and personalities in mind to provide a personalised and engaging learning experience. We use the skills identified within the National Curriculum as the basis of our teaching, as we recognize them as key skills for life-long learning.
Each term every class either participates in a school trip or a visitor comes into school to act as the stimuli for new theme. These trips and visits underpin the themes and set the children’s learning into real life contexts, helping them to make sense of it.
We recognise that learning is not just about subjects and knowledge, but also about developing a child’s personal and social qualities: consideration for others, empathy, compassion, resilience, honesty and respect. These qualities are encouraged and modelled by staff, volunteers and visitors throughout the school day and beyond.
Please see the attachments below for a breakdown of the skills which we cover in each year group.
Where possible, learning in math and English links to the children’s Theme or to real life/imaginary experiences.
We offer a range of after school clubs which include a variety of activities throughout the year; gardening, multi sports, sewing, running, art and French club show the breadth of the extra-curricular learning opportunities.
We believe that learning to read is the key to unlocking knowledge for children, and because of this we have been working hard to ensure children have a range of opportunities for reading. Learning to read is a journey and many skills need to be developed along the way. We start this journey as soon as the children start in our school.
From Reception to Y6 our children have regular word work sessions, following the Read Write Inc... programme and then No Nonsense Spelling. Our sessions are taught by trained teachers and teaching assistants. In addition, some children receive extension sessions because they are working beyond the expected level, or intervention sessions, because they are working below the expected level. Handwriting is taught alongside phonics, to ensure children are taught to write the letters that create the sounds they are learning.
We teaching our children to read common exception words as part of their Read Write Inc. lesson. Different sets of these keywords form part of the children’s homework, this helps parents to support their children at home.
Guided reading is incorporated as part of the Read Write Inc. lesson. When children have concluded the Read Write Inc. programme they continue to have guided reading sessions. During this session their teacher will set focus tasks, ask key questions and prompt the children to use a range of reading skills, for example: skimming, scanning, sounding out, using picture cues, breaking words into familiar chunks, inferring meaning, and offering opinions about texts.
All children from Y1 to Y6 will bring home an independent reading book, from the reading schemes we have in school.
We encourage parents to read and discuss their children’s books at least three times a week. Ideally this should be done in a quiet space, without the interruption of TV, radio and other distractions. For children in Y2 or below, this should be a period of approximately 10 minutes, for children in Y3 and above, we would recommend up to 20 minutes. Quality story texts are also encouraged to be shared and discussed. An adult can read these books to children, the quality of discussion and linking to experiences/ ideas are the crucial points.
Where children are identified as making slow progress, or struggling to make progress in reading, they will receive small group interventions, or 1:1 reading intervention sessions. The aim of these interventions is to provide a short spell of targeted intervention that re-tracks them. For some children, who may be on the Special Educational Needs Register, these interventions may be provided over a longer period of time, or throughout their time with us.
Toe-By-Toe, Wave 3 Reading and Trugs are some of the reading interventions we use regularly.
English is taught through high quality texts offering rich opportunities to explore and develop oral and written language. Children embrace learning a text with actions orally before writing their own. Children have a writing walls which they present through the year. This allows children to see their progress in writing and to present interesting end of block pieces of work that they are very proud to show off.
Spelling is a fundamental skill for children to master in order to allow them to show that they are working at age related expectations. In school, once children have completed the Read Write Inc. programme, they then follow a programme called No Nonsense Spelling which has really supported both teachers and children to adopt new ways of learning how to spell. Children also have dedicated spelling practice time regularly throughout the week.
Math’s is taught using the connective model at Sampford Peverell where children link images, calculations and symbols, real life contexts and language in order to fully comprehend concepts in maths. We have a range of resources readily available to support children relating images to maths these include, numicon, dienes, Cuisenaire number lines and an array of physical resources such as money and counting bears. We also use the No Nonsense Number programme to help the children learn their number fact quickly and effectively.
Every Topic incorporates learning about children’s own views and the opinions of others. We also ensure that there are frequent times for the children to reflect on their learning and to question their thoughts and ideas. Formal RE teaching follows the new Devon agreed syllabus.