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Therfield First School

“Bringing Learning to Life”

Our Curriculum

We are a small nurturing school; inspiring children for a lifetime love of learning through an exciting creative curriculum.

 

Curriculum Intent

Our highly participative creative curriculum is designed to inspire enthusiasm for learning, allow all children to thrive and support positive mental health and wellbeing.

 

Our motto of ‘Bringing Learning to Life’ is evident across all subjects with pupils gaining real life learning experiences inside and outside of the classroom.  Our cross curricular design allows children to make meaningful links between subjects and our growth mindset ethos develops interpersonal skills and builds resilience. Therfield is a real ‘I can do’ school.

 

Our children are inspired to be curious, ask questions and are motivated to find out the answers. We support our children to be as independent as possible, as early as possible, and never do anything for them that we cannot support them to do for themselves. Our children feel important and empowered; everyone is seen, heard and valued.

 

Our curriculum has been designed and sequenced to recognise prior learning, progressively building on the skills and knowledge to equip them for their next stages. Regular use of our outside spaces, weekly forest school, mindfulness, enrichment visits and visitors coming into school, allows our children to connect learning to the real world and develop positive attitudes for learning and for life. This is supported by our core values of Be Ready, Be Respectful, Be Safe.

 

We celebrate our own special school identity through the unique and personalised experiences that our curriculum and environment provides. Our small size allows us to build strong relationships, celebrate diversity and encourages respect. It also allows us to regularly come together as a whole; giving us a strong sense of community, belonging and connectedness.

 

Community involvement is an integral part of our curriculum, where we strive to make a positive contribution to the local and wider community; improving the wellbeing of ourselves and others. Events such as the annual Harvest Gift-of-Giving project, monthly GAP (Generations at Play) sessions, singing at the local nursing home and village litter picking, allow our children to recognise the positive difference that they can make.

 

Children will leave Therfield First School with treasured memories, shared experiences and the knowledge and confidence to embrace their next challenges and beyond.

 

What curriculum do follow?

The curriculum that we teach at Therfield First School, is taken directly from the National Curriculum (September 2014) for the children in Key Stage One and Lower Key Stage Two. In the Foundation Stage, our curriculum is underpinned by the Statutory Educational Programmes, as stated within the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework (September 2021). Other schemes of work, programmes and learning materials are used to support the delivery of age-related curriculum content.

 

How is the curriculum arranged?

Pupils in KS1 and LKS2 are taught in mixed year group classrooms. Discrete maths and english lessons take place daily and the foundation subjects cover all of the national curriculum content across a 2-year rolling programme of half term topics. Subjects covered in each half topic are taught as cross-curricular as possible; enabling pupils to make links between concepts and learning. Lessons are planned to involve high pupil participation and use of outside spaces wherever possible. Pupils receive a broad and enriched curriculum, including lessons taught by subject specialists; music, PE, forest school and mindfulness. Our curriculum design offers pupils a wide range of learning experiences, whilst providing enriching opportunities to develop skills for life. Each area of the curriculum is monitored by a subject leader who is responsible for ensuring that all pupils have access to high quality subject provision, where skills and knowledge are developed progressively. All subjects have high profile across the school.

 

EYFS:

In the Foundation Stage (Reception), pupils follow a one-year curriculum structure, covering all seven areas of learning (Personal, Social and Emotional Development, Communication and Language, Physical Development, Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design). All areas are of equal importance and interconnected. We provide a balance of learning through child-initiated play, group work and focused adult-led activities. Through a high quality indoor and outside provision, pupils are provided with exciting experiences to support learning across the curriculum which prepares them for their next stage of learning.

 

Phonics and Reading

Phonics

The school uses Letters and Sounds as its core phonics scheme from the Foundation Stage to Year 2. This is supplemented with resources from Read, Write, Inc. to support and scaffold learning (visuals, rhymes and songs). Pupils are taught according to their current phonic phase and groups are regularly reviewed in light of day-to-day assessment. Phonics assessments are carried out on a half termly basis and interventions swiftly put into place where children are working below age-related expectations.

 

Guided Reading

Children have a small group guided reading session each week led by the class teacher. Book banded texts (typically rom the PM scheme) are chosen for their appropriate challenge and are matched to the phonic phase pupils are in and to their reading level for comprehension content.

 

Shared Reading

Comprehension skills are also taught through shared reading sessions where the teacher models comprehension strategies to the whole class. Word recognition skills are also modelled during these sessions together with fluency and expression (Performance Reading). These sessions are often delivered within the planned English sessions.

 

Reading for Pleasure

Teachers and other adults regularly read aloud to their class to develop their appreciation of and engagement with reading. Texts are carefully selected to complement class topics and English themes. There is an inviting reading area in each classroom which provides a comfortable space for pupils to read and enjoy a range of books and authors. The school has an inviting library which pupils are encouraged to use during lunchtimes and borrow books on a weekly basis. The Mindfulness Garden is also used as a quiet space for pupils to enjoy independent reading. A weekly assembly, led by the Headteacher, is used as an opportunity to share and enjoy a book as a whole school.

 

Home Reading

The majority of the books in our reading scheme are PM reading books. PM is the largest and most finely levelled reading programme in the UK. The texts pupils take home are carefully matched to their current reading level. In Foundation Stage, pupils take home a decodable texts matched to their current phonic phase as well as a real book chosen by the pupil to encourage reading for pleasure. In KS1, pupils take home a range of texts depending on their current reading and phonics level. Decodable texts are available in every class to support pupils still at the early stages of word recognition. Once pupils are reading securely at grey Book Band they become a free reader and select lexiled books from the Reading Pro programme. Online quizzes are used to engage pupils and their parents with their reading. The school expectation is that pupils read a minimum of five times per week to an adult, recorded in the home reading book. A range of incentives are used to encourage pupils and parents to do this.

 

If you would like to find out more about our curriculum, you can find additional information on our website on the planning, subject and class pages. Alternatively, you can contact the school office for more information.

 

Yearly Overviews

Please click on the links below to view our curriculum overviews.  Here you will see where the National Curriculum outcomes will be taught, across our rolling programmes of exciting topics. EYFS (Honeypot Class) follow a one-year rolling programme of topics.  KS1 (Duckpuddle Class) and LKS2 (Rooks Nest Class) follow a two-year rolling programme.   

 

Long Term English Planning

The documents below outline our two-year rolling programme for English across KS1 and LKS2.  Our teaching sequences for writing have been linked to our exciting half term class topics.  

 

Long Term Maths Planning

We follow the White Rose Maths scheme of work for pupils in Reception to Year 4.  The document below shows how the White Rose curriculum links to the Key Stage 1 and 2 National Curriculum, and how it progresses through topics.  

 

The documents below show our long-term Jigsaw PSHE (including RSHE) programme of study and progression of skills.

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