Valentine Primary School
Curriculum 2019 - 2020
Valentine will be at the heart of the community. All members of our school community will be proud members of Team Valentine and will uphold the school’s inclusive ethos. They will commit to learning and therefore will be active participants in our personal growth. All team members will be creative thinkers and learners, who solve problems and are fully prepared to take on the challenge of the jobs of tomorrow. Team members will be inspired to lead fulfilled lives with positive relationships and will have the self-confidence and motivation to achieve their dreams. All members will embody the school values: aspiration, confidence and empathy. The team will be guided by a strong and true moral compass. The school will be a happy, safe environment which exudes positive energy.
What is distinctive about our school?
- We are fiercely inclusive
- We embrace difference
- We are the hub of the community
- We are a highly supportive team
- We set and maintain high expectations of ourselves and others
- We understand the importance of adopting a growth mindset
- We have a friendly inviting atmosphere
- We are a great network/ family for children to feel structure and security
Based on the context of our school and the needs of our community, we have developed a creative, project-based curriculum that inspires and engages our learners and builds cultural capital. It is centred around our core values:
- Aspiration – We strive to develop an understanding of the importance of setting high expectations of ourselves and achieving personal goals in order to be happy and successful. We expect all team members to always try their best to achieve a given goal, no matter how big or small this may be.
- Confidence – We expect all team members to believe in their own abilities to meet challenges and succeed; our safe, supportive environment allows learners to take risks without judgement or fear of failure.
- Empathy – We expect all team members to understand and acknowledge the feelings of themselves and others, embracing and celebrating difference and diversity. We strive to always be caring and understanding of the needs of ourselves and others, managing our emotions effectively.
Every aspect of our curriculum embodies these values – in the classroom, the corridor, the playground. Our school curriculum allows children to be safe and happy in school and understand how to keep themselves and others safe. It raises the aspirations of our learners by offering a range of experiences: each child will aim to complete their ’50 things to do before I am 11 ¾ booklet’ in their 7 years at Valentine. It also enables them to cultivate an awareness of, and interest in, the world around them. We provide children with the subject specific vocabulary and knowledge that allows them to build links and enhance learning. Learners take pride in their work and challenge themselves to do better.
Throughout our curriculum, we provide learners with the skills and knowledge they need in order to be able to enter the next stage of their education. For each National Curriculum subject there is a progression of knowledge and skills from Year R to 6 to ensure that the curriculum is progressive and each year builds on prior knowledge in line with the National Curriculum (MFL Year 3 – 6 only). In addition to this, there is a clear progression of knowledge and skills for British Values, Global learning, PSHE and RE from Year R to In addition to subject specific knowledge and skills, we enable learners to develop and deliberately practice key learning skills across all areas of the curriculum:
- Critical thinking/ curiosity
There are a number of signature pedagogies to ensure that we meet our curriculum intent; these make our curriculum unique for our learners.
- Each project starts with a fertile question which is explored throughout the project.
- There is a hook to engage children and an outcome to showcase their learning to a named audience.
- Our project display shows the journey of our learning, the knowledge and skills we have gained and the answers we have found to our questions
- All writing has a clear purpose and audience
- Our Maths curriculum includes opportunities for fluency, reasoning and problem solving – allowing children to ‘grapple’ with difficult concepts and investigate the best strategies and methods to use
- Children are exposed to regular opportunities for global learning in order to understand the world around them and have opportunities to discuss current issues and news in a non-judgemental environment.
- Key Stage 1 and 2 have a weekly ‘Globetrotter afternoon’ whereby they experience global learning opportunities including PSHE, P4C (Philosophy for Children), Spanish (in KS2) and Music
- RE is taught as experience days using the enquiry approach so that children experience deep learning
- Every child in Year 4 has the opportunity to learn a musical instrument and learn to swim
- Every Year 5 child learns specific mindfulness skills and techniques through the Paws.B programme to help secure better mental health through their adolescence and beyond.
- We offer a broad range of extra curricula activities that go beyond the school day (sports, music, Rock Challenge, drama club, nature club)
- We offer a range of enrichment activities that go beyond the classroom (school council, travel ambassadors, play leaders, trips, residential trips, visitors, competitions, forest schools, fundraising)
- Deliberate practice of key basic skills allows us to strengthen memory and makes information more retrievable
We will judge the success of our curriculum in the following ways:
- Pupil conferencing – are children happy, engaged, motivated to do well, challenged?
- Learning walks with governors and external visitors – can they see evidence of our values in action?
- Planning – does it allow for a range of experiences, is it allowing children to gain knowledge and master skills, does it meet the needs of all learners
- Books – are all children making at least sufficient progress from their various starting points?
- Data – is year group attainment and progress in all key stages in line with National averages, do all groups achieve as well as they should?
- Parent surveys – are parents happy with the curriculum we provide, if not – how can we change?
- Learning environment – is it rich in language to support children’s learning, does it support independence, does it promote pride in their work and high standards of presentation?
- Behaviour logs – are children embodying the school values at break and lunch times?