The RE Curriculum is based on ‘Come and See ‘which is a programme that covers all aspects of the Curriculum directory which has been devised by the Bishops of England and Wales.
At St Bede’s, RE always begins with and ends with prayer and the lamp is lit to reinforce our mission statement ‘Shine like a Lantern in the presence of the Lord’.
In RE nine themes are explored through the school progressively: three are sacramental, three are based on the major feasts of the year and three on our understanding of Church. The themes are explored through prayer, recounts, drama, hymns, poetry and art to enrich the children’s understanding.
Within the year the children also have the opportunity for two weeks to study two other faiths and each year has a different focus within the Religion.
The overarching aim for English in the national curriculum is to promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment. The national curriculum for English aims to ensure that all pupils:
- read easily, fluently and with good understanding
- develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information
- acquire a wide vocabulary, an understanding of grammar and knowledge of linguistic conventions for reading, writing and spoken language
- appreciate our rich and varied literary heritage
- write clearly, accurately and coherently, adapting their language and style in and for a range of contexts, purposes and audiences
- use discussion in order to learn; they should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas
- are competent in the arts of speaking and listening, making formal presentations, demonstrating to others and participating in debate.
At St Bede’s Catholic Primary School, we aim to ensure that our pupils are able to confidently:
- communicate through writing and be prepared for writing tasks throughout their lives
- undertake written work in other subjects and to have confidence in the sense, accuracy and clarity of their writing
- express themselves through writing and develop good transcription skills
Additionally, we believe that reading is a vital skill that should be acquired as early and efficiently as possible to enable children to have maximum access to all areas of the curriculum. We aim to develop in our pupils a love of reading that will stay with them throughout their lives.
Shared and modelled writing, takes place within English lessons. This allows the teacher to demonstrate good writing practice to the children while using their ideas. Teachers ensure that the writing demonstrated shows high expectations and covers the success criteria they would expect to see in the children’s writing.
Pupils become familiar with a range of text types and their features so that they can begin the exploration of language and structure. Once fully immersed in the text, it becomes a tool to explore ideas about language and structure (layout, level of formality, organisational devices, setting, character etc.) Class discussions and role-play give a context to grammar and syntax, which subsequently helps to develop and enrich pupils’ own writing skills over a three week period. By exposing our children to a wide bank of texts, we are helping to generate interesting ideas from them.
Children are expected to write frequently in a range of forms. This may be responses to a text, short writing tasks or weekly homework. Every three weeks children produce an extended piece of writing in their Time to Shine book which is a celebration of work across the school.
We provide children with a range of experiences and give opportunities to:
- Relate writing to their own experiences.
- Write across a range of narrative, non-fiction and poetry genres.
- Develop a voice as a writer.
- Discuss and reflect on their writing frequently.
- See examples of good writing through shared and modelled writing.
- Write in response to a range of stimuli, including music, film and real life experiences.
- Develop Grammar and Punctuation skills through explicit teaching.
- Regularly practice and improve their Handwriting.
- Improve their spelling through weekly tests on different spelling patterns and rules.
Spoken Language and Drama
St Bede’s Catholic Primary School firmly believes that meaningful talk helps children make fantastic progress in reading and writing, as well as other areas of the curriculum. Speaking and listening is essential in supporting children to develop and organise their ideas. We also value drama, providing children with opportunities to grow in confidence and independence. It is not only interesting and exciting, but a dynamic and exciting part of the Primary Curriculum. At St Bede’s Catholic Primary School, we use drama across all our subjects in an innovative and kinaesthetic way, allowing children of all ages to tap into their creativity, explore new concepts and contribute to their imagination.
Children are given opportunities to:
- Listen and respond to stories, poems and rhymes.
- Participate in discussions and debates.
- Discuss and evaluate their own work with peers and adults.
- Ask and answer questions.
- Justify actions and opinions.
- Participate in planned drama sessions across the curriculum.
- Orally compose before they write.
- Experience visiting theatre groups/storytellers performing at school.
At St. Bede’s our intent for mathematics is to teach all of our pupils a rich, balanced and progressive curriculum using Maths to reason, problem-solve and develop fluent conceptual understanding in each area. It is a whole network of concepts and relationships, which provide a way of viewing and making sense of the world; it is used to analyse and communicate information and ideas and to tackle a range of practical tasks and real-life problems. St. Bede’s policies, resources and our scheme of work support our vision e.g. our Maths policy, calculations policy, White Rose Maths and NCETM Teaching for Mastery.
Our Abacus scheme of work is a unique maths toolkit written for the new primary maths curriculum. All our pupils are provided with a variety of opportunities to develop, apply and master their mathematical skills and knowledge as they move through the school. Abacus offers a robust approach, which supports all our pupils in becoming inspired and confident mathematicians. The Abacus scheme of work is built on three core principles: progression, understanding and control.
- Progression – to ensure every pupil can move on: Abacus is built on a series of detailed progression ladders; these form the backbone to our scheme of work.
- Understanding – children need a robust understanding and secure foundation in maths in order to develop:
- conceptual understanding;
- numerical fluency;
- problem-solving skills;
- mathematical confidence.
- Control – Abacus offers flexibility in order to allow our class teachers to offer structure within their teaching; offering structure when they want it and freedom for when they choose to use it.
Although opportunities are primarily provided in mathematics as a discrete subject, provision is created for children to apply and extend their mathematical skills and knowledge in other areas of the curriculum.
Mathematics – in our school – is enhanced by our individual class working walls in each classroom designed to aid children’s learning through each topic.
At St. Bede’s the impact of our mathematics curriculum is that our children understand the relevance of what they are learning in relation to real-world concepts. We have fostered an environment where Maths is fun and it is okay to be ‘wrong’ because the journey to finding an answer is most important. Our children have a growth mindset and they make measurable progression against their personalised targets.
Science at St Bede’s is an introduction to the world of living things, materials and physical processes. It is a largely practical subject which develops a spirit of enquiry built up through the experimental testing of ideas which encourages and develops the child’s natural curiosity.
At St Bede’s, we believe that science will lead to a better understanding of ourselves and the world. It provides opportunities to appreciate scientific facts and concepts and to experience scientific discovery.
We believe that enjoyable scientific experiences foster confidence, encourage the ability to ask questions and helps children absorb the knowledge and skills associated with scientific methods of investigation. Through their powers of observation, prediction, investigation, and by interpreting their results children can, in collaboration with others, develop their knowledge about the world in which they live.
Learning opportunities will follow and build upon the National Curriculum guidelines.
Science at St Bede’s aims to develop learners who are ambitious, confident, enthusiastic and independent through high quality teaching. We aim to develop all learners through our curriculum which challenges them to be curious, think critically and problem solve. Throughout their journey at St Bede’s, we want children to develop their scientific skills and knowledge to keep moving forward with their understanding of the world and phenomena around them.
The school has adopted the ‘Developing Experts’ (Appendix 1) scheme, which we utilise alongside websites such as Explorify for the study for science. This ensures full coverage of the content for each year group and more, ensuring that children are given access to lively ideas and ways of working scientifically in a range of contexts, thus providing appropriate repetition and reinforcement which helps to ensure retention. ‘Developing Experts’ also allows us to address gaps we have identified as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic lockdowns. A broader curriculum in science will be delivered in EYFS, through ‘Understanding the World’, making links with other areas of the curriculum. At the start of every unit, there is a starter activity which aims to elicit what children already know about the area of science they will be learning.
The Primary National Curriculum for Computing is split into three strands: information technology, digital literacy and computer science.
- Information technology is about the use of computers for functional purposes, such as collecting and presenting information, or using search technology.
- Digital literacy is about the safe and responsible use of technology, including recognising its advantages for collaboration or communication.
- Computer science helps children of all ages to understand how computers and networks work. It gives all children the opportunity to learn basic computer programming, from simple floor robots in Years 1 and 2, right up to creating on-screen computer games and programmes by Year 6, using programming software such as Scratch.
At St Bede’s we use Rising Stars Switched on Computing as the basis of our weekly Computing lessons, but are adapted to meet the needs and development of the children and linked to other topics areas. Each half term has a different focus, which are shared by all the year groups but with progressively more complex outcomes and contexts. Our intent is to prepare children for the digital world, by equipping children to use computational thinking and creativity to understand the changes in the digital world.
We have a computing suite, laptops and iPads to ensure that all year groups have the opportunity to use a range of programmes and devices for many purposes across the wider curriculum, as well and during computing lessons.
One lesson each half term focuses on online safety and e-safety is also taught throughout each topic to help ensure that children feel confident when using computers and the Internet. It helps them to become more aware of the dangers online and know what to do if they come across something either inappropriate or uncomfortable.
The Primary National Curriculum for Design and Technology aims to develop children’s creative, technical and practical expertise to perform confidently and successfully in an increasingly technological world. The subject encourages pupils to build and apply their knowledge, understanding and skills to create designs, prototypes and products, giving children the opportunity to be critical of their ideas and products through evaluation and testing. The curriculum aims to ensure that all pupils can understand as well as apply the principle of nutrition whilst learning how to cook.
At St Bede’s, we use the ‘PlanB’ scheme of work as a basis of our weekly DT lessons. However, we adapt our lessons to suit the strengths and needs of individuals within our classes. Design and Technology is taught over three half-terms each academic year, with each half-term having its own focus and progression of skills.
The Primary National Curriculum for Languages strives for all learners to have the opportunity to learn a foreign language as it provides an opening to other cultures. Pupils should experience high-quality lessons which allow for them to explore their natural curiosity and teaches them to communicate for practical purposes. Having the opportunity to learn another language allows for new ways of thinking and should equip pupils with a foundation for learning further languages.
The subject aims to ensure all pupils:
- Understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic sources
- Speak with increasing confidence, fluency and spontaneity, finding ways of communicating what they want to say, including through discussion and asking questions, and continually improving the accuracy of their pronunciation and intonation
- Can write at varying length, for different purposes and audiences, using the variety of grammatical structures that they have learnt
- Discover and develop an appreciation of a range of writing in the language studied.
At St Bede’s our school’s educational intent is for pupils from Year 3 – 6 to learn the basic skills of speaking French to deepen their understanding of the world. We follow a scheme of work called ‘Rigolo’ which enables us the knowledge to teach purposeful and meaningful lessons. Our pupils in KS2 receive 30minutes of taught French lessons per week which involve speaking and listening, reading, writing and practical activities.
The Primary National Curriculum for Geography is split into four main areas from which all learning will be derived;
- Locational Knowledge e,g different countries, capital cities, oceans, continents
- Place Knowledge e.g similarities and differences between all the aforementioned locations.
- Human and Physical knowledge: describe and understand all key aspects of physical and human features for around the world.
- Geographical Skills and Fieldwork: can they use available resources to find out facts, trends and answers to the answers which require locational, place, human and physical knowledge.
Our aim is to inspire pupils’ curiosity and fascination about the world around locally and nationally. We aim to equip the children to understand the interaction between physical and human processes and the formation of the world around us.
If we are successful, we will have enabled the children to use the known and familiar, to understand the unknown and unfamiliar.
At St Bede’s we believe that a high-quality history education will help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. We aim to inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past. To provide the children with a thirst to learn more and to sow the seeds for their future learning of History. Through the teaching of History we endeavour to encourage pupils to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement. Our intent is to teach History so that it helps pupils to understand the complexity of people’s lives, the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups, as well as their own identity and the challenges of their time.
Our History lessons are carefully linked to other areas of our Curriculum. Our teaching begins with an enquiry–led approach to learning. The children consider their prior learning and also look ahead to learning that will take place in the future. Additionally, we ensure that the children have opportunities to also link their learning to our local area.
We celebrate Black History Month throughout the school each year with an array of activities and events for children of all ages. Additionally, we strive endlessly to ensure that students leave with the strongest foundation of British values upon which to build a successful life and a successful contribution to our Society.
The national curriculum for history aims to ensure that all pupils:
- know and understand the history of these islands as a coherent, chronological narrative, from the earliest times to the present day: how people’s lives have shaped this nation and how Britain has influenced and been influenced by the wider world
- know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations; the expansion and dissolution of empires; characteristic features of past non-European societies; achievements and follies of mankind
- gain and deploy a historically grounded understanding of abstract terms such as ‘empire’, ‘civilisation’, ‘parliament’ and ‘peasantry’
- understand historical concepts such as continuity and change, cause and consequence, similarity, difference and significance, and use them to make connections, draw contrasts, analyse trends, frame historically-valid questions and create their own structured accounts, including written narratives and analyses
- understand the methods of historical enquiry, including how evidence is used rigorously to make historical claims, and discern how and why contrasting arguments and interpretations of the past have been constructed History – key stages 1 and 2
- gain historical perspective by placing their growing knowledge into different contexts, understanding the connections between local, regional, national and international history; between cultural, economic, military, political, religious and social history; and between short- and long-term timescales. Attainment targets By the end of each key stage, pupils are expected to know, apply and understand the matters, skills and processes specified in the relevant programme of study.
PSHE in St Bede’s is based on the program Jigsaw. It is a comprehensive and completely original Scheme of Work for the whole Primary School from Nursery through to Year 6. It brings together PSHE Education, emotional literacy, social skills and spiritual development in a comprehensive scheme of learning.
SMSC (Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural) development opportunities are mapped throughout. All of these pieces of learning are brought together to form a cohesive picture, helping children to know and value who they are and understand how they relate to other people in the world.
Jigsaw contributes, as a good PSHE programme should, to the British Values agenda very significantly, both through the direct teaching of information and through the experiential learning children will enjoy.
The 5 strands of the British Values agenda have been mapped across every Puzzle and every Piece (lesson).
Whilst following the scheme we reinforce the learning by providing opportunities to enrich their understanding through our Anti-Bullying week workshops and activities, the junior citizenship trip for Year 6 and visits from the police to explore themes relevant to particular topics. In the summer term the Changing Me topic is underpinned by the RSE scheme ‘Journey in Love’ Year group liturgies use the themes and link them with religious teaching.
The Music Curriculum is presently based on the National Curriculum 2014
In the National Curriculum the elements that are covered are singing, performing, improvising, listening, appraising and composing and within these elements, there are dimensions that are explored progressively.
- PULSE: the steady beat of a piece of music
- PITCH: the melody and the way the notes change from low to high and vice versa.
- RHYTHM: or duration is the pattern of long and short sounds in a piece of music
- DYNAMICS: Loud and soft
- TEMPO: Fast and slow
- TIMBRE: The type of sound – whisper/hum/sing/talk (examples with the voice) or twinkly/hard/soft (examples with instruments)
- TEXTURE: Layers of sound (number of instruments or voices playing together
- STRUCTURE: The way the music is laid out –e.g. Verse, chorus, verse.
At St Bede’s, music is a rich experience where children have the opportunity to sing, perform improvise and compose listen and appraise progressively, considering the musical dimensions, while underpinning topics that are being taught in other aspects of the curriculum.Children begin to use musical language in EYFS so that they can confidently recognise and use this language with fluency when they reach upper key stage 2.
- develop competence to excel in a broad range of physical activities
- are physically active for sustained periods of time
- engage in competitive sports and activities
- lead healthy, active lives.
Reading is an important part of the English curriculum in our School. Reading books are organised on a book banding system ensuring the children read books appropriate to their level (the children’s reading should be 99% accurate in these books). These books will be provided and sent home for parents to read with their children. We use books from a range of schemes including: Bug Club and Oxford Reading Tree.
Each parent is given the opportunity to liaise with teachers through reading record books which record when the children have been listened to at home a minimum of five times per week.
Shared reading takes place within English lessons to provide enriching experiences through more challenging texts. Teachers also share stories with the class displaying an enthusiasm for reading and setting a positive example as a reader.
Phonics is taught daily in Early Years Foundation Stage and Key Stage One following the framework ‘Letters and Sounds’. This will involve a daily session of planned systematic phonics delivery, with a wide opportunity for application of skills through the environment and other lessons.
As part of the Literacy curriculum each child takes part in guided reading sessions. These sessions are led by the class teacher and allow the children to develop their reading and comprehension skills.
We provide the children with opportunities to:
- Read daily using a wide range of text and genres (during independent reading time, whole class sessions and focused guided reading sessions.)
- Participate in daily interactive phonics sessions which start in EYFS and continue through KS1 (and KS2 if necessary).
- Encourage children to read widely, challenge themselves and enable them to make well-paced progress in comprehension.
- Share and talk about stories to improve their comprehension skills and to help them make informed choices with their independent reading.
- Read aloud to encourage expression and instil confidence.
- Value books through reading regularly to children, celebrating World Book Day, teachers Golden Tickets and promoting the importance of reading through a Bug Club.
- Ensure reading skills are taught as children progress through the school to enable them to develop a critique of a range of literature and styles of writing.
Provide Lexia intervention to help selected children make accelerated progress.
The Early Years Stage for phonics is split into two sections, Reading and Writing.
- Reading is when children decode and blend the sounds in a word using the phonetical sounds they are taught.
- Writing is when children use their phonics sounds to build words as they are spoken.
At St Bede’s, we believe that all our children can become fluent readers and writers. We use Twinkl Phonics to help teach phonics in a systematic and synthetic way. We start teaching phonics in Nursery and by following Twinkl Phonics progression, ensures children build on their growing knowledge of the alphabetic code, mastering phonics to read and spell as they move through school.
In the EYFS, our phonics is taught in a discovery based way incorporated through Levels 1, 2, 3 and 4 from the Twinkl Phonics programme. In Nursery, running alongside the Twinkl Phonics Level 1, we provide a balance of child-led and adult-led experiences for all children that meet the curriculum expectations for ‘Communication and Language’ and ‘Literacy’
In Reception, this is taught every day. A recap of previous sounds to start, then an introduction to the new sound and then an activity based around the new sound. Children are also given the opportunity to practise their skills during reading, writing and other activities available to them during their structured play.
The National Curriculum for spelling has a statutory list of spelling (sound) patterns for children to be able to use before the end of Year 1. There is a Phonics Screening test that is to be taken by every Year one pupil in England towards the end of Year 1 to assess the children’s knowledge.
At St. Bede’s in Year One, we teach five lessons a week where we learn a different sound for four of these lessons and the fifth lesson is a consolidation of the week’s sounds along with a spelling test, which is differentiated over three sets. In the previous four lessons, we revise the previous sounds taught and then introduce a new sound. We then read the sound in words and build our own words with the day’s sound. We then move on to writing sentences using our phonics knowledge. In Year 2, the Twinkl Phonics Level 6 stage is taught for 30 minutes daily to develop grammar, reading and writing skills in an engaging way.