At Abbotsweld, we passionately believe that all children deserve access to an education that will provide them with life-fulfilling opportunities and the freedom to make choices about their future. The curriculum at Abbotsweld Primary Academy sets out the body of knowledge and skills that our pupils will gain at each stage of their time at school, whilst supporting and promoting our core school values. The curriculum supports our mission and structures that encompass a proactive development of the whole child.
Through focusing on three intrinsically linked key drivers: academic success, physical development and positive wellbeing, children are given the opportunity to thrive in fundamental areas, preparing them to be not just ‘next stage ready’, but ‘life ready as global citizens’.
Through a carefully sequenced core curriculum, alongside an inspiring wider curriculum, children at Abbotsweld will leave with:
- The ability to read fluently, and a love for reading, allowing them to make sense and understand the world
- A rich vocabulary enabling them to communicate successfully, challenge and debate
- A wealth of character defining and memorable childhood experiences (largely mapped out within our ’50 things’ and Sense of SELF programme) to develop cultural capital
- An understanding of the world around them that they are fully equipped to compete in
- An acceptance and appreciation of others differences
- Tools and strategies to ensure positive wellbeing and happiness
- The ability to think metacognitively and self-regulate, allowing them to feel in control of their learning
Using the National Curriculum to underpin our curriculum, subjects are carefully planned and sequenced, mapping out the key knowledge and subject specific skills children need to master at each stage. For most subjects, the school has developed its own sequential and progressive curriculum to ensure the school’s local context is reflected. For others, the school has adopted, and then adapted, external schemes of work.
Each unit has essential learning questions outlined that children explore, as well as key subject skills children need to develop from early years to year 6. The knowledge and skills are both progressive and support the development of key concepts and schemas. Key vocabulary is highlighted and taught explicitly to the children throughout all lessons, in line with the school’s teaching and learning policy. Exposure to high quality texts is consistent across the curriculum, ensuring reading and vocabulary opportunities are maximised.
We strongly believe it is essential that primary schools are proactive in their approaches towards wellbeing and this is at the heart of Abbotsweld’s wider curriculum. A structured, purposeful whole school approach and mission helps to support pupils in developing lifelong positive wellbeing and can strengthen any additional support pupils may have for mental health and wellbeing.
Abbotsweld’s mission- ‘Where everyone find a Sense of SELF’ is the basis of our approach to supporting pupils at each stage:
To be ‘life-ready’ socially pupils should know who they are themselves, in the community and in the world.
To be ‘life-ready’ pupils should have appropriate exposure to make choices based on their own context, in their communities context and the world.
To be ‘life-ready’ with appropriate life-skills pupils should know how they can look after themselves, in their own lives, in the community and in the world.
To be ‘life-ready’ pupils should be fascinated about their own lives, their community and the world.
It facilitates the development of positive wellbeing, whilst supporting an acknowledgement that physical development helps to enhance a healthy mindset. In turn, this enables the creation of a positive and proactive zone for wellbeing thus enabling those who are more vulnerable every chance to grow more resilient and positive in mindset. Some of our ‘Sense of SELF’ experiences include:
· Exposing children to unique experiences
· Increases resilience, independence and confidence
· Supports children in developing relationships
· · Increases motivation
Sense of SELF curriculum and wider opportunities
· Supporting the development of basic life skills
· Encouraging children to be independent
· Building confidence and self-esteem
· Ensuring children are next stage and life ready
· Improving behaviour
· Developing important characteristics in children
· Supporting children in identifying positive characteristics in others
· Highlighting characteristics needed to be successful adults
· Reducing noise and unwanted behaviour in corridors
· Creating a welcoming environment
· Ensuring those with sensory difficulties or anxiety enter a calm building
· Setting a tone for the environment outside of the classroom
Get Up Get Going
· Increasing physical fitness over time
· Linking health benefits with wellbeing (academically and mentally)
· Reducing obesity across the school
· Developing a love for running
How do we teach our curriculum?
Our teaching and learning policy highlights our consistent pedagogical approach across all subjects:
Key teaching intentions:
- Teachers have secure subject knowledge
- Prior knowledge is explored, recapped and built upon
- Retrieval opportunities are provided across all subjects
- Knowledge and skills are progressive
- Learning questions and steps to being successful are made explicit
- Oracy is built into all lessons
- Vocabulary is explicitly taught in all lessons, focusing on tier 2 and tier 3 words
- A range of formative assessment strategies are used
- Scaffolded planned activities ensure expectations remain high and all learners can be successful
- Metacognitive skills are developed and promoted across all areas of learning
- Plenaries allow learning to be consolidated and moved forward. Learning behaviours linked to the school’s values and subject specific skills are consistently reflected upon
The purpose and aim of our curriculum is for high achievement and success for all pupils, despite their backgrounds or starting points. Children’s success can be demonstrated in these three key areas (our curriculum drivers).
A range of effective formative and summative assessment strategies demonstrate that knowledge and subject specific skills are learnt and retained as children move through their primary education.
We understand that ‘The aim of all instruction is to alter long-term memory. If nothing has changed in long-term memory, nothing has been learned.’ (Kirschner, Sweller and Clarke, 2006). Retrieval opportunities and practice across the curriculum are fundamental to our assessment approach, enabling children to retain and link key knowledge in order to develop concepts and schemas.
Children at Abbotsweld understand the importance of being physically healthy. A huge importance is placed on health and wellbeing and the school has developed a range of approaches to ensure children are physically healthy. Some of these approaches include:
Over 90 children access our daily free breakfast club, promoting the importance of having a healthy breakfast and providing children with extra opportunities to engage with an activity focused on either the mind, body or soul.
Children at Abbotsweld take part in ‘Get Up, Get Going, giving them an additional opportunity to exercise, increasing physical fitness over time.
Children, through our Pupil Athlete Pathway, curriculum are encouraged to take part in competitive sports, which they do so with determination, resilience and perseverance- this may be through active participation, coaching or umpiring.
Children at Abbotsweld are happy. They have a love for learning and show a great enthusiasm for subjects across the curriculum.
The wider curriculum provides children with a range of tools they can use to regulate their emotions (e.g. the use of Zones of regulation) and they have a huge network around them if they need to seek support and advice. Our partnership with Place2Be provides invaluable support. The service is accessed by a high number of our children and has an extremely positive impact on their wellbeing.
Children at Abbotsweld demonstrate the school’s values:
Pupils make the right choices for their safety, including their safety online, and these choices benefit the school and the wider community.
You can explore our curriculum further, by clicking on the icons below:
- Abbotsweld English Long Term Plan
- Abbotsweld Mathematics Long Term Plan
- Abbotsweld Science and non core Long Term Plan
If you would like to find out more about our curriculum please contact the school office on 01279 630120 and ask to speak to the Head of School.