Puddletown First School Curriculum
The school provides a broad curriculum that enables ‘learners to be the best they can be.’ We place a strong emphasis on English and maths skills as we believe these are the keys that enable our children to unlock their learning. Our maths curriculum is a problem solving focussed approach using both Singapore and White Rose to enhance our existing curriculum. We use ECC as a formal intervention programme.
Our phonics teaching is based on ‘Letters and Sounds’ with all early reading books for the children focussed on phonetic progression. We use phonic interventions throughout the school but also recognise that for some children this is not an effective strategy, in that case we use support to help the children recognise the whole word. We use FFT reading recovery as our formal intervention.
We use No Nonsense Spelling as the basis of our teaching of spelling.
We prioritise maths and English in the morning across the school. We have arranged that teachers have PPA on Friday PMs ensuring that the SENDCO is also available on Fridays afternoons.
Our approach to learning in all subjects is based upon the Mindset work of Carol Dweck and Guy Claxton we aim that understanding is secure laying foundations that need to be in place before new learning is introduced. For example in Y1 we ensure that the EYFS is completed for a child before beginning the NC, this means we do not target set in YR at all or Y1 until January.
We have used the work of Chris Quigley to ensure that the skills taught in maths and English are applied in the wider curriculum. We have developed humanities learning ladders to focus on the skills needed developing a ‘think like a ….. (scientist/historian etc)’ approach. To facilitate this our curriculum is topic based enabling teachers to make strong cross curricular links, where links are not easily made then the content is taught in discrete subjects. We avoid blocking subjects such as D&T as we believe all subject areas should be part of the pupils regular entitlement. We have also undertaken an audit of the curriculum to ensure that the NC is well covered.
When planning the foundation subjects we have worked in key stages not year groups to ensure that curriculum coverage is secure.
Priorities for School Development
We recognise that whilst English, Maths, EY and science have had strong subject leadership elements of other foundation subjects have had less focus and have been dependent on key stage development . Whilst we are confident that our curriculum is secure but are strengthening our focus on subject leadership within our SDP for 2020/21. We are confident that this will have impact in elevating the status of all subjects ensuring we can be confident in progression of skills. There is an early proposal within DASP to support subject leaders in this as subject knowledge across a range of curriculum areas will always be a challenge for small schools.
We are also ensuring that our online learning provision is robust enough to ensure that pupil's learning has the minimum of interruption in the event of future school closure.