Early Years (Nursery and Reception) 3 – 5 years of age
As required, the school follows the Early Years Statutory Framework for pupils in Nursery and Reception (Early Years Foundation Stage). There are seven areas of learning, that chime with eleven of the thirteen subjects that children at our school enjoy from the year they turn six years of age – Y1.
The areas are: communication and language, physical development and personal, social and emotional development and in addition – literacy, mathematics, understanding the world and expressive arts and design.
The areas are interconnected and each is important.
Key stage 1 (KS1) 5 – 7 years of age;
and, Key stage 2 (LKS2 and UKS2) 7 – 11 years of age.
At St. Bede’s, we follow the new National Curriculum Framework (Y1 – Y6) 2014, a copy of which is available below.
Every school must provide a curriculum which is balanced and broadly based and which:
- promotes the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils at the school;
- and, prepares pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life
The school curriculum comprises all learning and other experiences that each school plans for it’s pupils. Every school must follow the National Curriculum but the National Curriculum forms only one part of the school curriculum for the education of every child; it is organised on the basis of twelve subjects, classified as core and other foundation subjects.
There is time and space in the school day and in each week, term and year to go beyond the national curriculum specifications. The National Curriculum provides an outline of core knowledge around which exciting and stimulating lessons can develop pupils’ knowledge, understanding and skills as part of the wider school curriculum.
All schools should make provision for personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE) drawing on good practice. Schools are also free to include other subjects or topics of their choice in planning and designing their own broad and balanced programme of education. The school curriculum by subject and academic year is published online.
Contextualised Curriculum Drivers
Our curriculum is driven by three distinctive things.
In what we choose to emphasise to our children, we are driven by three things:
- the ethnic and cultural diversity of our community;
- the disadvantaged start of the majority of our children;
- our local area’s story.
(1) Long Term
Topics and Units
Each term features units of work from each subject area. We take one of these units each half-term and make it a particular focus of interest for the class. We call the specially selected unit of work the topic for the half-term. We try to make links between subjects when studying the topic.
(2) Medium Term
Knowledge and Skills
In each unit or project, we are looking to teach key pieces of knowledge and skills. By knowledge, we mean to know something. By skills, we mean to be able to do something. As adults, we may know the Highway Code and be able to drive. The first is knowledge, the second a skill. Children acquire new knowledge and skills at school each half term. In a history unit of work, they may come to know that the Victorian age was one of great change and in a Personal, Social and Health lesson, they may learn what makes a good friend. Both of these would be examples of acquiring new knowledge. However, in a mathematics lesson, they may learn how to how to calculate ratios, a useful skill.
Attitudes and Behaviours
In addition to knowledge and skills, children also acquire attitudes both in lessons and elsewhere in our school. Such attitudes will shape their behaviours. The attitudes that we look to cultivate are based on our values or those of British society.
As a Catholic school, we look to provide a climate where our children can grow in their faith, building upon their beliefs. At the same time, we work hard to ensure that they learn about the beliefs of others in order that they may come to respect them.