The Curriculum at Moorfield Primary School
As a state-funded school from 2014 we will offer the new National Curriculum.
Early Years Foundation Stage
During this year, the foundations of learning are set and the behaviours for learning are created. At Moorfield we ensure that we have extremely high expectations of our children and no learning time is lost. We have two class teachers supported by a team of highly effective teaching assistants. Although the children are in two classrooms, there is free flow between the classrooms supported by a corridor space that has learning zones and access to the outdoor learning quadrant, playground and forest zone. The teachers and TA’s support learning across both classrooms and the free flow opportunities allow for the children to mix from both classes and work with adults across Reception.
The curriculum is thoroughly planned out to incorporate teacher and TA led focus sessions, exploration with independent application time, an opportunity to work meaningfully outside and is carefully balanced between ‘free flow’ and focus teacher led learning. It is vital to ensure that our children develop the prime areas of learning and in particular for our children, managing their feelings and behaviour and developing their speaking, listening and understanding skills. Thus, ‘free flow’ and exploration is very important and a large part of our EYFS curriculum. In addition, to ensure the children have the chance to meet our high expectations, our daily timetable is varied and tight.
The areas of learning and development
There are seven areas of learning and development that shape educational programmes in early years settings. All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected. Three areas are particularly important for building a foundation for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, forming relationships and thriving.
These are the prime areas:
- Communication and Language
- Physical Development
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Providers must also support children in four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied.
The specific areas are:
- Understanding the World
- Expressive Arts and Design
The environment will be meaningfully set up to ensure that all areas of learning are covered both inside and outside. Language development is a big priority for us at Moorfield and our curriculum is tailored to support these needs.
Our aim is to develop individuals who are creative, independent and who have a love of learning.
The National Curriculum
In Key Stage 1 and 2, children follow a variety of subject areas from the National Curriculum. To view this document in its entirety please follow this link:
The Core Subjects are:
The Foundation Subjects are:
- Art and Design
- Design and Technology
- Modern Foreign Languages
- Physical Education
We also teach:
- Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education
- Relationship and Sex Education
- Religious Education
We follow the National Curriculum and provide each child with a range of English skills to equip them with skills for life including; reading, writing and spoken language. We believe that spoken language is an essential skill which feeds into effective reading and writing. “If you can’t say it, you can’t write it”.
Reading & Phonics - Teaching the essentials
We use Essential Letters and Sounds (ELS) for planning, delivering and assessing phonics. ELS is a systematic approach for teaching children to read using . It is split into six phases, from starting to learn about sounds at Phase 1 to becoming fluent readers by Phase 6.
Book Banded Books - Progression in fluency and understanding
Children are expected to read at home daily and progress through book banded books. It is important to develop knowledge and understanding of texts as well as fluency of reading. Parents are encouraged to discuss books with their child at home and are supported with home reading strategies through workshops in school.
Reading, Comprehension and Understanding - Promoting a love of reading
To support our love of reading we have implemented the use of weekly ‘VIPERS’ reading sessions where pupils engage in a range of literary devices. VIPERS is an acronym to aid the recall of the 6 reading domains as part of the UK’s reading curriculum. They are the key areas which we feel children need to know and understand in order to improve their comprehension of texts.
VIPERS stands for:
Sequence or Summarise
The 6 domains focus on the comprehension aspect of reading and not the mechanics: decoding, fluency, prosody etc. As such, VIPERS is not a reading scheme but rather a method of ensuring that teachers ask, and pupils are familiar with, a range of questions. They allow the teacher to track the type of questions asked and the children’s responses to these which allows for targeted questioning afterwards
In addition, children are taught and read a range of high quality texts and genres which may relate to their topic or learning in other subjects. This is to ensure children leave Moorfield with a rich and diverse understanding and love of books and reading. We believe that “Reading is the access to the breadth of the curriculum” and ensure pupils are supported to become confident and fluent readers
Spoken Language - Speaking, listening and performing
Children develop their vocabulary, speaking and listening skills, and confidence on a daily basis through a series of activities which lays down the foundations for children to put their thoughts into writing.
Spoken language is developmental across the school covering a range of aspects, including;
- Vocabulary and standard English
- Reasoning, justification, exploring ideas and asking questions
- Speaking fluently and audibly for a range of audiences and purposes
- Debating and discussion
- Performance and drama
- Listening, responding appropriately and valuing the views of others
Writing - From the spoken word to the written word
Pupils are taught how to write for a range of purposes and audiences giving them the ability and expectation to apply their skills across the curriculum and become creative writers.
A progressive approach to writing is planned, taught and assessed considering a range of aspects across the curriculum, including;
- Handwriting and standards of presentation (following Martin Harvey handwriting programme)
- Composition of writing (thinking before writing)
- Composition of writing (thinking during writing)
- Composition of writing (thinking after writing)
- Composition of writing (Vocabulary, grammar and punctuation)
- Transcription of writing (spelling)
Self and peer editing is key in order for pupils to be reflective and take ownership of their learning, enabling them to be clear on next steps and become confident writers
We follow the National Curriculum and endeavour to provide and equip our children with a range and depth of mathematical knowledge, skills, fluency, understanding and reasoning that they can apply across and beyond the curriculum. The planning, delivery and assessment of maths at Moorfield is supported by a range of tools and resources including the North West and White Rose Maths Hub to ensure opportunities of mastery for all and greater depth.
A progressive set of mathematical aspects and skills are covered through the curriculum including;
- Number (Place value, addition/subtraction, multiplication/division, fractions, decimals/percentages, algebra)
- Geometry (properties of shape, position and direction)
- Problem solving (arithmetic and reasoning)
Maths is an interconnected subject and pupils are required to move fluently between representations and structures of mathematical ideas, thinking and variation.
Coherence - Lessons are broken down into small connected steps that gradually unfold the concept, providing access for all children and leading to a generalisation of the concept and the ability to apply the concept to a range of contexts.
Representation and Structure - Representations used in lessons expose the mathematical structure being taught, the aim being that pupils can do the maths without recourse to the representation. Pupils will be taught a range of methods through the Concrete, Pictorial, Abstract (CPA) approach.
Mathematical Thinking - When taught, ideas are to be understood deeply, they must not merely be passively received but must be worked on by the pupil: thought about, reasoned with and discussed with others.
Fluency - Quick and efficient recall of facts and procedures and the flexibility to move between different contexts and representations of mathematics.
Variation - Variation is twofold. It is firstly about how the teacher represents the concept being taught, often in more than one way, to draw attention to critical aspects, and to develop deep and holistic understanding. It is also about the sequencing of the episodes, activities and exercises used within a lesson and follow up practice, paying attention to what is kept the same and what changes, to connect the mathematics and draw attention to mathematical relationships and structure.
Mathematical language and vocabulary - High importance is placed on ensuring adults and pupils are using and developing appropriate mathematical language and vocabulary; visually, verbally and in the written form.
Times table expectations - Pupils are expected to learn their multiplication and division facts up to the 12 times table. We use our own developed Moorfield xTables to challenge pupils both in school and through home learning. Pupils are expected to complete their multiplication tables by the end of Year 4.
We endeavour to deliver the science national curriculum in a creative and enjoyable way making science accessible relevant and stimulating.
We aim to create a learning environment that encourages children to make decisions, explore and experiment in an atmosphere of mutual respect. We aim to support and extend knowledge, understanding, skills and confidence through a combination of adult and child led activities to provide the children with an understanding of the world and how science changes our lives. All children participate in Science lessons each week and plan and conduct at least one experiment per half term.
Children are taught a variety of science units throughout the year to develop their knowledge and understanding and develop their scientific enquiry.
Working scientifically will underpin the development of scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding, the children’s understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science and the uses and implications of science today and in the future.
Science offers exciting, relevant and practical opportunities for children to learn, grow and develop through practical experience. We aim to provide authentic science experiences which are based on answering scientific questions and solving problems.
We provide opportunities to allow children to experience and develop all aspects of working scientifically:
- Observing changes over time
- Looking for naturally occurring patterns and relationships
- Identifying and classifying things
- Researching using secondary sources
- Comparative and fair testing
Children develop skills in the use of equipment and measurement and work with proper regard for their own safety and that of others, using safety equipment where necessary.
We give each pupil the opportunity to apply and develop their technological understanding and skills across a wide range of situations and tasks using the Teach Computing Curriculum. We will use a range of resources, such as iPads, interactive whiteboards and laptops, to provide children with these opportunities and ensure that children are equipped with effective and transferrable life skills.
The core of Computing is coding, in which pupils are taught the principles of information and computation. They will learn how digital systems work, and how to put this knowledge to use through programming.
In Key Stage 1 pupils will learn to use logical reasoning and computational thinking in order to build and debug simple computer programs. They will also be taught to understand what algorithms are and that programs are executed by following precise and unambiguous instructions.
In Key Stage 2 pupils will build on previous learning to design, write and debug programs that accomplish specific goals. Pupils will also be taught to use sequence, selection, and repetition in programs; work with variables and various forms of input and output. They will use logical reasoning to explain how some simple algorithms work and to detect and correct errors in algorithms and programs.
Computing also ensures that pupils become digitally literate. We will teach pupils to use, express themselves and develop their ideas through ICT – at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.
In Key Stage 1 pupils will learn to use technology purposefully to create, organise, store, manipulate and retrieve digital content.
In Key Stage 2 pupils will be taught to understand computer networks including the internet; how they can provide multiple services, such as the World Wide Web; and the opportunities they offer for communication and collaboration. Pupils will also build on their ICT skills, such as the use of Microsoft Word and PowerPoint, to produce digital content and provide them with transferrable life skills.
Computing and the use of technologies at Moorfield are underpinned by e-safety being central to the curriculum. While showing children the benefits of using new technologies we are also rigorous in teaching them about how to use technology safely and responsibly. E-safety is taught across the school and by the end of Year 6, pupils will be able to use technology safely, respectfully and responsibly; recognise acceptable/unacceptable behaviour and identify a range of ways to report concerns about content and contact.
Art and Design
Using many different materials, children develop their skills in many areas of art. Through creation and appreciation of art, the children learn use of colour, pattern, texture, line shape, form and space, as well as design techniques such as drawing, painting and sculpture using a range of materials - pencil, charcoal, paint clay etc. They are introduced to artists and art forms from different periods and cultures, and encouraged to develop their own ideas.
Design and Technology
Using creativity and imagination children design and make products that solve real and relevant problems through the evaluation of past and present design. Pupils are encouraged to take risks, becoming resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable citizens. They also learn to evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others.
There is a four stage process that is followed:
- Technical Knowledge
Children deepen their understanding of their locality and the wider world as well as encourage a responsible attitude to the world and its resources and to appreciate and value the local environment.
In Key stage 1pupils develop knowledge about the world, the United Kingdom and their locality. They develop an understanding of basic subject-specific vocabulary relating to human and physical geography and begin to use geographical skills, including first-hand observation, to enhance their locational awareness. In Key stage 2, pupils extend their knowledge and understanding beyond the local area to include the United Kingdom and Europe, North and South America. This includes the location and characteristics of a range of the world’s most significant human and physical features as well as developing the use of geographical knowledge, understanding and skills to enhance their locational and place knowledge.
Pupils learn the following:
- Locational knowledge
- Place knowledge
- Human and physical geography
- Geographical skills and fieldwork
Children develop an awareness of the past, using common words and phrases relating to the passing of time. They know where the people and events they study fit within a chronological framework and identify similarities and differences between ways of life in different periods. They use a wide vocabulary of everyday historical terms and understand some of the ways in which we find out about the past and identify different ways in which it is represented. They develop a secure knowledge and understanding of British, local and world history, establishing clear narratives within and across the periods studied and develop the appropriate use of historical terms.
Pupils learn the following:
- changes within living memory
- events beyond living memory that are significant nationally or globally
- the lives of significant individuals in the past
- significant historical events, people and places in their own locality
- changes in Britain from the Stone Age to the Iron Age
- Britain’s settlement by Anglo-Saxons and Scots
- the Viking and Anglo-Saxon struggle for the Kingdom of England to the time of Edward the Confessor
- a local history study
- a study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils’ chronological knowledge beyond 1066
- the achievements of the earliest civilizations
- Ancient a non-European society that provides contrasts with British history
We use the ‘Language Angels’ programme to support us in teaching Modern Foreign Languages – Spanish. Language Angels is an online teaching resource that allows our teachers, irrespective of their linguistic ability, to teach Spanish from Year 3 to 6.
Our Year 3 pupils start on the Early Language Units - for children with little or no previous foreign language knowledge. As they move through Key Stage 2 the children will move on to the Intermediate Units - for pupils building up their foreign language expertise. Then on to the Creative Curriculum Units which tie in to familiar curriculum topics. Finally to the Progressive Units which extend and challenge pupils with a sound understanding of the basics of the language they are learning.
We also use the Charanga programme to support us in teaching Music. The Charanga Musical School Scheme is an online teaching resource that allows our teachers, specialist or non-specialist, to teach music from Year 1 to Year 6. The Scheme supports all the requirements of the new National Curriculum and is based on: Listening and Appraising; Musical Activities - creating and exploring; and Singing and Performing.
Each class is taught a variety of gymnastics, dance and games lessons throughout the school year. Pupils are encouraged to explore and encounter a wide range of challenging and creative activities in dance, gymnastics, games, outdoor and adventure.
We provide the children with the skills to:
- develop competences to excel in a broad range of physical activities
- be physically active for sustained periods of time
- be engaged in competitive sports and activities
- lead healthy, active lives
All children participate in two PE lessons each week, as well as physical activities at lunchtime and numerous after school clubs on offer. Sporting competitions, inter and intra ones are available to encourage and enable children to develop their physical development further.
We have a specialist PE teacher working with staff and children each Tuesday, sharing her expertise and modelling effective lessons, enabling teachers to use these strategies and ideas in their own PE lessons.
PSHE (also see SMSC Development)
Personal Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) Education is a subject through which pupils develop the knowledge, skills and attributes they need to keep them healthy and safe, and prepare for life and work in modern Britain. We use the ‘One Decision’ programme.
There are three core themes for PSHE learning:
- Health and Wellbeing
- Living in the Wider World (including economic wellbeing, aspects of careers education and citizenship)
The citizenship element involves children learning about their place in society, their growing responsibility as citizens and as members of the global community, and their developing understanding of systems such as democracy.
We use the ‘Discovery Education Health and Relationships’ programme which covers the statutory requirements for teaching primary Health education and Relationships education. It contains lessons for teaching all aspects of the guidelines, including the non-statutory aspects of primary sex education in Year 6.
The programme develops skills and knowledge in a values-based context which supports our own values, learning and behaviour, developing and enhancing pupil wellbeing and consists of six broad, progressive topics from Year 1 to Year 6:
- Healthy and happy friendships
- Similarities and differences
- Caring and responsibility
- Families and committed relationships
- Healthy bodies, healthy minds
- Coping with change
We encourage the children to acquire reasoned and positive attitudes and beliefs which include a respect for and understanding of other peoples’ spiritual, religious, moral and cultural ways of life. We help them to appreciate the world in which they live and the interdependence of individuals, groups and nations.
Through our RE curriculum we promote knowledge and understanding of the underlying principles of Christianity and other major faiths so as to encourage children to be confident and productive members of their local and worldwide multi-faith community, with an awareness and understanding of the multi-cultural and diverse society we live in.