“Access to knowledge is the key educational contribution to fighting inequalities.”
(Basil Bernstein, British Sociologist)
Our key intent in the Primary Phase is to ensure that all pupils develop a positive attitude to learning and we strive to ensure that every child succeeds both socially, emotionally and academically. The primary phase is characterised by high expectations of self, based on six ‘golden rules’: fundamental to this is our positive behaviour for learning curriculum incorporating dialectical behaviour therapy (DBT), ‘Emotion Coaching’, SEAL and PSHCEE. This approach enhances positive relationships with self, others and the curriculum, which is measured through regular PASS assessments, this analyses a pupil’s perception of self and their attitude to school and learning. Our approach is strengthened by daily enrichment activities and an approach to positive discipline which aims to build internal models of self-regulation.
Priority is given to the teaching of English, mathematics and science. These core subjects are taught discreetly, and seeded into other aspects of the curriculum. PE is taught by specialist teachers as we acknowledge the positive link that physical health has on mental well-being. The humanities are taught through subject driven themes which incorporate and provide context for the majority of National Curriculum subjects and is mapped out in a curriculum delivery model that meets the key requirements built on a coherent two-year plan. An iterative teaching approach to learning activities ensures that specialist knowledge and skills are embedded and used in other contexts. Throughout their learning journeys, pupils acquire powerful knowledge and develop a skill-set that is relevant and provides pupils with a strong sense of their place in the world. Our curriculum is designed to take pupils beyond their narrow life experiences and expand skills of independence, critical thinking, creativity, collaboration and active learning. In our context, teaching subjects in an inter-linked way helps to highlight real-world examples and gives pupils the opportunity to understand how their learning applies across multiple subjects. Every learning journey includes either a visit and/or visitor which provides specialised knowledge upon which children can build their understanding of the subject. Underpinning the whole curriculum are three key drivers: RWS (resilience, well-being and success), Community (a sense of belonging) and Widening Horizons; specifically chosen to tackle the context specific issues pertinent to our disadvantaged pupils and prepare them for reintegration back into their mainstream setting. Pupil academic outcomes are assessed against clear and explicitly planned attainment targets and key performance indicators.
Our safe and secure learning environment fosters an ethos of trust and respect. SMSC and Life in Modern Britain are golden threads woven into all aspects of the curriculum developing cultural capital and extending perspectives. Our children develop their understanding of how actions affect themselves and others and learn about tolerance and respect through the study of different communities and democracy. This is further strengthened through the teaching of Mandarin and our collaboration with the InHarmony Opera North music tuition programme and Leeds Beckett University’s Story Maker’s Press.
We plan through: our drivers, the outcomes for KS1 and KS2 and our behaviours for learning curriculum to provide a curriculum entitlement rich in knowledge and skills, which extends a child’s perspective, fosters a sense of awe and wonder and remains loyal to the expected requirements of the programmes of study contained within the National Curriculum.