How is the Curriculum Implemented?

There are three Key Stages:

FOUNDATION
Nursery and Reception

KEY STAGE ONE
Years One
and Two

KEY STAGE TWO
Years Three, Four, Five and Six

We recognise that when children first start school it is incredibly important to ensure that the environment and all the experiences they meet promote confidence and independence.

The Foundation stage therefore is crucial to the long term development of each child and we place great importance upon this time. The Foundation Stage combines our Nursery school with our Reception class. Working together is the essential ingredient to ensure that our children gain a solid foundation to inspire them to continue on their learning journey as they progress through school. During this time our curriculum absorbs each child in deep and satisfying play, which stimulates the imagination and opens up a world of possibilities.

The Foundation Stage immerses children into an exciting, active environment with endless possibilities for play, which allows them to explore and expand on what they know already. Focused small group teaching coupled with child led activities enables skills, attitudes and imagination to develop, as children begin to reason and problem-solve. By revisiting learning intentions many times in different ways, such as through dance, small world play, art, water play etc., the Foundation Stage creates confident, independent, enthusiastic and creative thinkers, who enjoy learning.

Play is the world and work of the young child:

“Just as sunlight provides the body with vital nourishment, high quality play in childhood is nature’s vitamin for our whole sense of well being.”
Sally Jenkinson, The Genius of Play

As the journey through school continues we know that developing children’s long-term memories is the key to effective learning and therefore key concepts will need to repeated and revisited throughout the learning process. Our curriculum design is therefore underpinned by four main principles:

  • Communication is at the heart of all learning and must be developed progressively.

  • Learning is most effective with spaced repetition.

  • Interleaving helps children to discriminate between topics and aids long-term retention.

  • Retrieval of previously learned content is frequent and regular, which increases both storage and retrieval strength.

In addition to the four principles we also understand that learning is invisible in the short-term and that sustained mastery takes time. Repetition is important so that children can secure their knowledge into their long term memory. Therefore we regularly assess how well the children are retaining their prior learning and retrieving it.

Some of our content is subject specific, whilst other content is combined in a cross-curricular approach. Continuous provision, in the form of daily routines, replaces the teaching of some aspects of the curriculum and, in other cases, provides retrieval practice for previously learned content.