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The desire of all leaders and governors to be outstanding is clear. There is no sense of complacency. (Ofsted 2016)
St Botolph’s Global curriculum is engaging, exciting and relevant to the children at our school, preparing them for life in modern Britain. It is driven by a desire for our children to have a greater knowledge of the world and an awareness of the possibilities open to them in their future lives and careers.
“At St Botolph’s every day is a new day…to learn new things…to make a new start….that can take us anywhere we want to go….”
Our aim is to promote aspirational, independent children who are happy, respectful and have self-belief.
We want all children to become creative, active and reflective learners, enabling them to be able to respond positively to the opportunities and challenges of a rapidly changing world and promote a commitment to lifelong learning.
Our Christian values are seen as essential in establishing our school ethos:
Creation – We celebrate and enjoy the world in all its diversity.
Community –We nurture positive relationships within the school and wider community.
Compassion – We support one another, sharing experiences.
Endurance – We persevere in the face of hardship and never give up.
Responsibility – We share a collective responsibility for our world, community and the people in it.
Trust – Trust lies at the heart of the relationships within our school.
Our curriculum drivers have been reviewed to drive us forward and to be at the heart of our curriculum, embracing our core values:
Social, emotional and physical wellbeing - As well as caring for their education, we also care for the children’s mental health and wellbeing and feel that it is essential to provide children with information to enable them to make life long, well informed decisions about their diet, physical and mental health.
Our world – We share a collective responsibility to understand and look after our world, realising our impact on it and the difference we can make
Spiritual and moral - We care for and develop the whole child spiritually and morally, enabling them to live with respect, tolerance and understanding
Our curriculum is underpinned by the Essentials Curriculum by Chris Quigley. The Essentials Curriculum sets out the essential coverage, learning objectives and standards which are required for all subjects. Furthermore, it provides progress measures for all subjects including personal development.
One of the primary reasons we chose this curriculum is because it emphasises the importance of developing the depth of children’s learning. In essence, this means providing children with increased cognitive challenge, allowing them to apply the skills which they have learnt independently in a range of contexts rather than moving them onto the next skill needlessly when they have not truly mastered it.
We feel this curriculum provides us with a coherent, progressive and appropriately sequenced curricular structure to enable our pupils to develop subject specific knowledge and skills to prepare them well for the next stages of their education. The curriculum, builds progressively on from the learning in the Foundation Stage. The milestones (1, 2 and 3) that are built into our curriculum complements our mixed age class structure. The curriculum is aligned to the National Curriculum and goes beyond National Curriculum requirements in each milestone to ensure repetition of skills and knowledge.
During our curricular review we began by considering the curriculum we want and we know our children need. We considered areas we showed real strengths in and wanted to ensure continued, alongside areas we wanted to develop and felt our children needed in order to gain the necessary skills and attributes for lifelong learning.
We’ve ensured that our curriculum is underpinned by our values and key drivers. We believe it is important that the curriculum both explicitly and implicitly develops these attributes so they are meaningful to pupils and they can see how they affect their daily and future lives.
We have established a set of non-negotiables in English and Maths which ensures all children have the basic knowledge and skills needed to succeed.
Using the Essentials Curriculum, we have mapped out the key knowledge and skills for each subject across each milestone (a 2 year cycle). Across each milestone/key stage, the pupils study four countries in depth (the countries would generally run from September to February and then February to July). Within each country, themes are explored and different subjects are covered. Choosing this approach enables our children to develop meaningful links and opens their eyes to a world beyond their immediate locality. It also builds their cultural capital, preparing them with the essential knowledge for their future success. Planning in this way ensures all children have access to the full curriculum which progresses in skills and knowledge across the year, we know that during each milestone every indicator is covered at least twice so children have the chance to work at a Basic, Advancing and Deep level. This way we know that progression will clearly take place across each milestone and as children progress through FS to the end of KS2, preparing them fully for transition to the next phase in their education.
We feel it is so important to inspire the children with a wealth of additional experiences and opportunities. The children need to have the chance to experience new things, to work with those they wouldn’t normally be with, to try things presented to them in a different way. Each key stage has at least one trip and one inspirational visitor per year linked to their country. In addition, each key stage can access an enhancement opportunity linked to an identified desire/interest. There are also whole school annual trips and visitors, the opportunity to take part in two residentials, and a wide range of extra-curricular clubs and opportunities throughout the year.
As a Christian school we teach RE as a discrete subject and use the RE and wider curriculum to find ways to explore pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, utilising our local and wider community. As there are limited languages and religions represented through our school community, we provide a range of experiences across their Primary education, to enable pupils to understand and respect those from other faiths and communities and appreciate that people live their lives differently.
Our curriculum builds a community of learners with an excellent attitude to learning in a safe and caring environment.
Children shine at St.Botolph’s and have fun.