Our Rationale and Values
In this section, you will find information about our school’s curriculum, including:
- the bespoke curriculum at FPLS – this is how we have crafted our curriculum to suit our school profile and catchment needs. The three ‘Golden Threads’ are DIVERSITY, THE ENVIRONMENT and THE ARTS; these are threaded through our curriculum provision and mapped out through the delivery of topics. The FPLS curriculum journey document below shows the mapping across the school. Also, see the DIVERSITY, The ENVIRONMENT and THE ARTS buttons on the home page panel for more information on the vision. The intent, implementation and impact of each theme is here.
- the bespoke curriculum table below shows how we are different and how we deliver our curriculum.
Please click on the links below to view more information as mentioned in the document above:Child Initiated Learning embedded into Transition activitiesEnquiry based Questions and OpportunitiesAll About Life / Values EducationEnrichment Offer Project Week / DaysIndependence and Choice to RecordCommunity Focused OfferPastoral Team and Offer
- the enrichment offer – this is all the additional enhancements that we add to our curriculum provision to make it rich, enjoyable and motivating for learners. We start each topic with a WOW day to hook learners into a new theme, where they can research and have kinaesthetic opportunities to explore in a multi-sensory way.
- the FPLS curriculum journey shows the topics that each class follows in each academic year from Nursery to year 4, using the golden threads through these topics
- the content of each subject area uses the National Curriculum, Early Years program of study and Agreed Syllabus documents. Each subject area has its own tab - Progression of skills and intent, implementation and documents fully explained.
- the names of the phonics and reading schemes we are using.
Fairfield Park learners are:
We want our children to be compassionate and educated citizens, who have a foundation of core values integrating these into the school and then the wider community.
Our curriculum and provision is carefully crafted so that our children develop their academic, social and cultural capital. Our provision and environments have rich learning spaces that enhance the curriculum, they include a learning street that can be used in a flexible manner and is different to a class-based zone. It allows for working in ways that are more creative by standing up, sitting in pods, lying on rugs and cushions. Both our sites have outside areas that are stunning, well landscaped and have learning opportunities such as an outside theatre and amphitheatre, a fitness zone, bug hotels, nature areas, large fields, climbing frames and dedicated gardening plots.
Our curriculum promotes curiosity and a love and thirst for learning. It is ambitious and empowers our children to become independent and resilient. We strive for academic excellence and want our children to have high aspirations. We want them to have no limits to what their ambitions are and want them to embody our school values, through our Values Education and citizenship ethos.
We encourage our children to celebrate success and build on disappointment in order to develop resilience. We want to equip them with not only the minimum statutory requirements of the National Curriculum but to prepare them for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life. We want our children to use our project weeks to celebrate the vibrancy of the Arts, the awe of their environment and respect diversity and other cultures, co-operate with one another and appreciate what they have. We achieve this by providing a strong SMSC curriculum, where British Values and our Values is placed at the heart of everything we do. We enrich their time in our school with memorable, unforgettable experiences and provide enrichment opportunities to complement the curriculum and make it real and topical. We firmly believe that it is not just about what happens in the classroom, it is about the added value we offer to really inspire our children.
Our curriculum has been carefully built and the learning opportunities and milestones for each year group considered, ensuring progression and repetition in terms of embedding key learning, knowledge and skills. Subject leaders have developed subject specific vocabulary, which we expect the children to demonstrate in each discrete subject area. This vocabulary underpins all work in these subjects, forms a focal point for display areas, and provides a common base for staff and pupils.
Our Values Education and ‘Citizenship’ permeate all aspects of life at Fairfield Park Lower School. There are 12 school values that have been crafted to fit our catchment and school community and these are celebrated individually each half term. We have three core values, which are constant through all our practices ‘respect, responsibility and trust’. Values are explored as a whole-school theme in assemblies, class and non-structured times by all staff in the community. Values is our base for our behaviour policy and awards around the school. Citizenship is promoted as a skill for life in all school activities - through the School Council; KS2 Community Helpers; Baycroft Care Home links; and projects with the local Parish Council.
We empower our staff to organise their curriculum as they see fit to best suit the needs of the pupils in their care. They are best placed to make these judgements. Staff develop year group specific long-term curriculum maps, which identify when the different subjects and topics will be taught across the academic year. The vast majority of subjects are taught discretely but staff make meaningful links across subjects and in the topics to deepen children’s learning. Staff also take account of topical issues and news items and embrace/ prepare children for difficult conversations.
Our short-term plans are produced on a weekly and daily basis. We use these to set out the learning objectives for each lesson, identifying engaging activities and resources, which will be used to achieve them.
We encourage staff to block some foundation subjects such as history and geography; art and design and design and technology; religious education and computing to encourage in-depth learning opportunities to deepen thinking, knowledge and skills for our pupils. These subjects have been carefully mapped to ensure coverage across the year and across the cohorts to ensure regular taught sessions. All other foundation subjects are taught through weekly lessons, including the core subject of science. This helps to ensure sufficient time and depth is allocated to each subject area and makes contextual real links. Staff have designed an allocation of teaching time for the entire curriculum to ensure there is a clear balance and rationale around each subject area.
We use both formative and summative assessment information every day, in every lesson. Staff use this information to inform their short-term planning and short-term interventions. This helps us provide the best possible support for all of our pupils, including the more able, SEN and vulnerable pupils. Subject leaders have mapped out the progression of skills for each phase and further broken these objectives down for each year group in each subject area.
Assessment information is analysed by Subject Leads, Phase Leaders, the Assessment Lead and Headteacher as part of our monitoring cycle. Pupil progress meetings are conducted half-termly. This process provides the Senior Leadership Team and Governors with an accurate and comprehensive understanding of the quality of education in our school.
We set out our monitoring cycle at the beginning of each academic year. This identifies when monitoring for all year groups is undertaken in all subject areas. Monitoring includes: book scrutinies, lesson observations/ visits, learning walks, teacher dialogues, pupil conferencing, pupil/parent and/or staff voice.
All of this information is gathered and reviewed. It is used to inform further curriculum developments and provision is adapted accordingly. Annually we review our curriculum provision to ensure it is the very best for our pupils and meets the needs of our growing community.
At Fairfield Park Lower School, we are committed to providing inspirational and innovative teaching and the highest quality learning experiences for all our pupils. We aim to create an environment, which promotes curiosity, a love and thirst for learning and empowers our children to become independent, lifelong learners. Our children are at the heart of our curriculum and we ensure every child is valued, challenged and encouraged to achieve and succeed.
Curriculum Snapshot Newsletters posted here – to follow
Please click on the link below to download a comprehensive guide to the National Curriculum for parents.