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Markington Church of England Primary & Nursery School  

Curriculum Intent Statement

Our curriculum has been carefully designed, planned and organised to ensure that children are intellectually engaged, motivated to learn, and achieve a deeper level of understanding - in all subject areas.  It is our firm belief that the substance of our education prepares children for the challenges they will face in life and the next stage of their education.

Our thorough knowledge of our children (we ‘know every hair on their head’*), context and community; has enabled all stakeholders to work together to ensure coherent learning at every step.  We strive to provide all children with a good education which allows them to thrive and flourish spiritually, academically and socially - whatever their start in life.  We want every child to achieve the highest possible outcomes.  Our open, supportive and nurturing church school ethos creates a positive climate, which provides all learners with solid foundations to support them to strive for their best, and take pride in their achievements. Pupils develop into self-confident, polite and caring young people with ‘a love of learning’ – and the academic and social skills to succeed.  We are determined to open children’s eyes to the possibilities available to them and to give them the very best start in life. 

Our school lies in the heart of this small, rural community and knowing the barriers faced by our pupils, enables us to utilise the challenges being a small school offers, to provide bespoke learning, firmly anchored in the National Curriculum.  We encourage our pupils to show tolerance, empathy and generosity towards difference.  Our curriculum design helps our children to become:

  • Effective communicators
  • Good listeners
  • Respectful and tolerant members of the community
  • Curious and aspirational young people
  • Knowledgeable learners

 

Our passionate teachers plan and implement lessons which engage and ignite a desire for knowledge and provide opportunities for deeper learning.  Our ambitious curriculum supports and encourages all children to achieve – and then strive for more.

We are responsive to children’s interests, current events in the local and wider world, and events in the school community, embracing opportunities to work collaboratively in partnerships in our local cluster of schools.  Cohort sizes vary so class structure is continually reviewed and staffing allocated according to the need of individuals and cohorts.  We review our curriculum regularly (at least annually) to ensure that what we offer children is the very best it can be in our ever-changing world and society.  All teachers are involved with its design and other stakeholders (Governors, parents, pupils, support staff and the wider community) are consulted and included, at every stage.  This ensures that everyone understands our main curriculum priorities and understand the rationale that underpins it.

Subject Leaders play an essential role in the design of our curriculum and we carefully organise content to ensure children have opportunities to revisit, practice and repeat learning – which is essential for deep learning.  We understand that not all learning has to be completed in blocks – because that is not the way children learn – but we seek meaningful links and overlaps to achieve this.  Subjects are carefully mapped on a rolling program to enable knowledge and skills to be built on and revisited regularly (in a meaningful way) to ensure progression.  Opportunities are provided and planned in, to make connections and develop deeper understanding of the subject being taught. 

We recognise our role in developing our pupil’s vocabulary and this is a key part of our curriculum planning, teaching and learning environment.  We explicitly teach vocabulary; extending word choices through carefully selected novels, non-fiction and poetry.  Our well-stocked library; focus on a love of reading; and teacher’s use of class reading books; extends our children’s exposure to ambitious texts and broadens their literary heritage.

Our hands-on approach to maths follows the CPA approach (concrete, pictorial, abstract) to maths mastery.  Small steps are built on and children gain solid foundations to build their knowledge through practical application and discussion, enabling them to apply their mathematical learning to different contexts.   Through problem solving and skilled questioning, we encouraging them to reason and explain confidentially when faced with unfamiliar challenges.

We want our children to be curious, asking questions and expressing opinions, in the appropriate time and manner, so they become active citizens - with a voice.  Our curriculum,  School Council and Cluster Ambassadors give children the opportunity to work democratically with others and become advocates of change. 

Our curriculum has been carefully designed, planned and organised to ensure breadth, balance and depth for every learner in our school.  Learning needs are analysed and the curriculum is tailored and personalised to ensure that every child is engaged, inspired and challenged.  The main aim of our curriculum design is to move children towards a deep level of understanding in every subject area so that they will be able to use and apply skills and knowledge in different areas.  Our curriculum weaves meaningful links between the core and foundation subjects and we view the arts, sport, humanities and religious education as important aspects of our children’s education.  We use assessment effectively to move learning forward and to inform planning.

Respectful behaviour is expected, modelled and recognised.  Many of our children need support to develop their listening skills and, through daily routines; carefully structured lessons; high-quality teaching; and the use of specific programs; we teach the children that listening is a vital part of effective communication. 

We think that academic and personal development are equally important and we understand that children will not learn effectively, or be successful in their lives, if they are not able to handle their emotions effectively.  Staff are excellent role models and are highly skilled in supporting children’s development of their emotional intelligence.  Children are encouraged to recognise and find strategies to work harmoniously together, learning to solve disputes and manage their feelings appropriately, in preparation for life. 

Underpinning our curriculum is the strong place of our school in the community.  We foster a genuine learning partnership between home and school and provide many opportunities for parents to become actively engaged in school life.  At the heart of our curriculum is our genuine desire to enable all children in our care to become the best they can possible be.

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