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Curriculum

Intent, Implementation and Impact – Curriculum 2022/2023

Curriculum Intent

At St. Edmund’s school we will provide excellence in education inspired by the practice of our Catholic Faith. We will make the most of all our gifts in our safe, happy and caring school. With Jesus Christ as our friend and model, we will help each other to grow in the love of God, developing self-esteem, and a love of learning.

We aim to provide rich learning opportunities, promoting achievement in every area and fostering social, emotional and spiritual well-being.

Our Primary Curriculum gives children the strongest possible start to their education, by equipping them with the knowledge, skills and cultural capital needed to be successful in their next stages of learning and beyond. Pupils study a broad and balanced curriculum, in order to:

  • make good progress in all aspects of their development;
  • make a strong start in early reading, writing and mathematics, enabling them to access a rich and varied curriculum;
  • develop the essential knowledge and skills needed for their next stages of learning or beyond;
  • begin to appreciate and acquire powerful knowledge of each subject, as defined by subject specialists;
  • increase their knowledge and understanding of the world around them, and begin to understand their rights and responsibilities as global citizens;
  • have high aspirations for their future.

We recognise that there are six key areas of development that are interrelated and contribute to building a student's cultural capital:

  • Personal Development.
  • Social Development, including political and current affairs awareness.
  • Physical Development.
  • Spiritual Development.
  • Moral Development.
  • Cultural development.

Starting with the Early Years, we provide children with the seven areas of learning and development implemented through adult led and child initiated learning. Towards the end of the EYFS, the children are prepared for the more formal learning which takes place in Year 1. They then enter Year 1, and we see the Year 1 to Year 6 curriculum as a body of subject-specific knowledge defined by us and the National Curriculum and so we take a knowledge-led approach. When children are ‘fluent’ in knowledge, such as number bonds and times tables, they can then apply them as skills. Our curriculum is accessible for those with disabilities or special educational needs by complying with our duties in the Equality Act 2010 and the Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014. Teachers plan to meet the needs of all the students in class and work with professionals to ensure all children receive high quality teaching.

We provide a rich, broad and balanced curriculum with a thematic approach to deliver the curriculum. Our curriculum maps, and units of work in every subject, contain the knowledge that we have identified as essential in our school, taking cultural capital into account. These have been carefully crafted for each subject, identifying composite knowledge and skills and breaking them down in to component parts to ensure sequential, layered knowledge acquisition. The curriculum is sequenced and progressive so that children can systematically accumulate knowledge which becomes embedded in their long-term memory. This approach enables pupils to make meaningful connections in their learning.

The school’s bespoke planning supports our pedagogical approach (direct instruction) to teaching and help with the speedy and effective induction of new staff.

Reading, which we link closely to our focus on oracy skill development, is the gateway to pupils learning. To ensure all our pupils are able to access the full curriculum, we therefore place a strong focus on oracy, early reading and vocabulary development.

Many children have English as an additional language on entry, or arrive with limited language skills. The promotion of strong oracy skills is a priority for our children, as many enter school with limited vocabulary and practice in speaking. This focus runs throughout our curriculum, because children must be able to talk about what they have learned in a knowledgeable and articulate way.

To ensure the most disadvantaged pupils in our school have the best opportunity to thrive academically, our Pupil Premium Strategy focuses on reading, vocabulary acquisition and speaking and listening so that all pupils can access the curriculum. Similarly, we closely map out our provision for our SEND pupils, so that they gain the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in life.

We aim to enrich our pupils’ life experiences and to raise their aspirations by introducing them to a wealth of local cultural experiences that expands their horizons and develops confidence they need for the future. School links with the local banks in Canary Wharf to give the children the opportunity to learn about careers and meet the professionals in their buildings and also at other school events.

SMSC is taught in a cross curricular way throughout the year groups (see our curriculum map) and is not limited to specific Personal, Social, Health and Citizenship Education (PSHE), Relationship and Sex Education (RSE) or Religious Education (RE) lessons. We focus on helping our children to grow and develop character, resilience and inner discipline through making choices, taking responsibility and being honest with themselves and others. In order to achieve this, we have incorporated opportunities for building character into our curriculum, including: sport, creativity, performing, the world of work and membership. This provides pupils with the inner resources and confidence to tackle the frustrations and setbacks that are part and parcel of life.

As our children gain confidence, knowledge and skills we hope that they will go on to become compassionate, well-balanced and resilient life-long learners. We support them in taking their place in society as active citizens, economically independent, exemplifying the British Values of equality, tolerance, democracy, individual liberty and rule of law.

Curriculum Implementation

The implementation of our curriculum is greatly supported by carefully structured bespoke half-termly planning, leading pupils through component knowledge and skills to composite knowledge and skills in all subjects.

Our pedagogical approach is based on Rosenshine’s Principles of Direct Instruction.

The Principles of Direct Instruction:

  1. Daily Review
  2. Present new material using small steps
  3. Ask questions
  4. Provide models
  5. Guide student practice
  6. Check for student understanding
  7. Obtain a high success rate
  8. Provide scaffolds for difficult tasks
  9. Independent practice
  10. Weekly and monthly review of current and prior knowledge

 Impact of the curriculum

  • We constantly review and improve our curriculum through regular subject based monitoring to ensure sequential, layered knowledge acquisition and check that pupil outcomes are of a very high quality.
  • Pupils love to show what they know and what they can do.
  • Pupils have secure knowledge and skills that they apply confidently to a range of experiences.
  • Pupils make very good progress using this approach as evidenced by our pupil achievement data year on year, the work in their books and their attitude to learning.
  • Look at http://www.st-edmunds-school.org/website/our_school/275501 for information on our pupil attainment and achievement.