Curriculum Statement of Intent
Curriculum Statement of Intent
We believe that every child should have the opportunity to be extraordinary. We aim to help them achieve that through a creative, bold and courageous curriculum which is underpinned by our school ethos, vision and values -that of recognising that each child is unique and by providing them with a curriculum that is inspirational, creative and caring whilst also providing challenge for all. We believe this will prepare our children for the future in a world where technology is constantly changing. Our curriculum not aims to provide children with the skills that they need now, but also the ability to be flexible, resourceful, reflective and resilient, helping them to adapt and problem solve as they grow up in an ever-changing world.
These are the aims which underpin our creative curriculum:
- A school which has children and learning at the heart of everything we do
- A school where moral, social, spiritual and cultural development underpins academic achievement
- Inspirational learning opportunities which build skills for life
- An inclusive, bold and courageous curriculum which provides a range of opportunities in which to participate and excel, within and beyond the school day
- A culture that enthuses and empowers everyone to extend their own learning
- A listening school where children and adults know their views are important, respected and acted upon
- A warm, positive environment where we value effort, recognise success and celebrate achievements at all levels
- A sense of team where all feel valued and respected
How will that be implemented?
Following on from the child initiated in Early Years, our creative cross curricular and topic based curriculum which is based on the 2014 National Curriculum and firmly rooted upon a set of skills which are progressive, has been developed to allow all children to explore, inspire, achieve and flourish in both their personal as well as academic development. We aim to do this through an EPIC Curriculum:
EPIC stands for E –Exciting learning experiences P-Pace/Progress I-Involvement C-Challenge Each creative curriculum topic starts off with a ‘launch’, in which we inspire and engage our learners as well as give them an opportunity to explore what they would like to find out. A launch could be a trip, a visitor bringing in artefacts, a dress up day or simply listening to a piece of music. These launches provide hands-on exciting learning experiences to engage learning and bring learning to life. Throughout the topic there are further hooks and careful links to high quality texts and real life maths experiences. We also stretch our learners in the wider curriculum with a big focus on art, music, dance and sport. Throughout each topic children are encouraged to extend their learning with creative home learning challenges which often leads to the whole family becoming involved and new creative talents and skills are unlocked. We also build in creative learning weeks such as M.A.D.D week ( Music , Art, Dance & Drama). A wonderful example of this is was forged through a partnership with a school in Chongquing, China when we held a Chinese Culture
week and Chinese pupils came to visit us. Th Headteacher, Mrs Diskin, and Ass Headteacher, Miss Fisk, were invited to travel to China and spent a week visiting numerous schools to find out about the curriculum in Chin and to present the Norwood method to them. Every pupil is nurtured and challenged throughout. Our children love undertaking this kind of a creative learning journey, as do staff, and, most importantly, we feel this method of learning keeps our school a dynamic, fresh and stimulating place to learn. Please look at our Curriculum overview pages for additional information re each subject
Our EPIC Curriculum: EPIC stands for E –Exciting learning experiences P-Pace/Progress
E – Exciting learning experiences
- Active, enquiry based curriculum opportunities
- First hand experiences which is reflected in a varied curriculum overview which is broad, balanced and offers variety - providing something for everyone
- A range of resources, contexts and questions allow exploration and investigation
- Lessons which contain elements of challenge, surprise and some risk
P – Pace/Progress
- Assessment is essential - understanding what the children already know, understand and can do, what misconceptions they have and therefore what their next steps are. Therefore, the teacher can take each child forward.
- Tracking and subsequent planning and target setting helps children to achieve ARE and beyond
- High expectations for the quality of task, which is shared with the children using success criteria and quality of work.
- Marking and feedback supports children's learning and helps them to 'close the gap' or extend further
- Children understand their next steps and can act upon guidance of how to improve their work
- Children are given time to think for themselves and make decisions within their learning - targeted questioning supports where necessary.
- Children understand routines (especially during transitions) so that no learning time is wasted
- Adults actively support learning within the classroom while still allowing independent opportunities for children to practise and consolidate their understanding (allowing children to make mistakes and intervene appropriately for them to learn from them)
I – Involvement
- Participation by all is encouraged through verbal (paired talk) and non verbal means (whiteboards, show me activities) - although a culture of 'have a go' and learning from mistakes exists.
- Children are encouraged to be independent, successful and responsible for their learning where they can be reflective about their learning.
- The teacher builds strategies to help the children to evaluate their own work and others so that they can identify their successes and next steps.
- Group work encourages all members to have a clear role in order to contribute and engage in the learning process.
- Questioning enables all children to get involved (even during targeted questions) using ABC (agree, build on, challenge + reasons)
- Activities are linked to children's experiences and interests and allow opportunities for personalised learning ensuring that all individuals are involved.
- Assessment for learning (WALT/WILF) ensures children take responsibility for their learning and can be reflective about their successes and next steps - for themselves and others (peer assessment)
- Children are encouraged to have control of their learning and be fully active participants with an element of choice in how they show their understanding
- Examples of good work are shared as a model to others
C – Challenge
- Teachers must be flexible with a lesson in order to change the pitch or level of challenge if they deem that something is too easy/too hard
- To ensure all children are working to their capacity, teachers must also develop resilience and resourcefulness so that they can overcome challenges and learn effectively.
- Higher order thinking questions ( linking to Blooms Taxonomy) questions which challenge children to think in different ways and tasks that build on these.
- Children set themselves realistic but high goals and can recognise when something is too easy and can rectify this.
- Tasks are presented in a variety of ways (models, artwork, puppet show, news report, role play, board games, video, interview etc.) which makes them think 'outside of the box'.
- Work builds upon prior experience and learning in order to extend thinking further whilst children can make links to secured understanding
- Children are able to work as an individual and with others within difficult investigations and problem solving activities
- Children identify what they wish to know and questions that they want answered and can manage their learning in order to do this.
Our Curriculum Values:
Our learning Values are fostered through our Learning Heroes which help our children become better learners by encouraging good learning habits and attitudes which will enable them to face the challenges and difficulties in a calm, confident and creative way. They also encourage them to see the importance of learning in a positive way and how it can impact on their overall achievements. This teamed with the Growth mindset model which we are developing with the children aim to make them fearless in their learning, willing to learn from their mistakes, know that they can get better at something as long as they practise and keep trying and always have an attitude of “I can do it!”
Our Building Learning Power Heroes are:
Determinator –Resilience, Perseverance and Aspiration- not giving up and trying to be the best that we can.
Collaborator-Teamwork, Collaboration and Responsibility- being able to learn with and from others, as well as on your own.
Connector-Creativity, Enjoyment- being able to use a range of learning strategies and knowing what to do when you get stuck.
Reflector- Reflection, Curious, Confidence – being able to think about yourself as a learner and how you might improve or change things for the better.