The children are at the heart of everything we do at Manor Park CE First School. We work together daily towards a shared mission of,
Inspiring all to learn and grow.
Manor Park CE First School Curriculum Design
At Manor Park First School, we have adopted the Chris Quigley Essentials Curriculum. This incorporates the National Curriculum but goes even further by including key skills for each subject area. These key skills encourage children to think and behave like a Scientist, an Historian, a Geographer etc, so that they can find out and validate information for themselves. In addition, children’s personal development is built into the curriculum to help children to grow into responsible, respectful and active citizens who will be well equipped to play their part and become actively involved in public life as adults.
At our school we use the ‘Vehicle’ concept to deliver the curriculum learning to the children. The ‘Vehicle’ is a project that does not have its focus primarily on the subjects of the National Curriculum but is rooted in real life experiences that children engage with for a term. Where possible, teaching from all curriculum subjects will be covered through the vehicle, making purposeful links in learning. The ‘Vehicle’ model allows the learning to be responsive to the cohort of children and the adults in that year group at the time, drawing on interests, specialisms and areas of expertise. The overarching aim of our curriculum design is to build opportunities to develop our children’s cultural capital.
In addition, we endeavour to tailor our curriculum to the needs of the children in our particular school. With this in mind, the staff have worked together to decide upon three curriculum drivers – community, initiative and growth – and opportunities to develop these drive the curriculum design. Our place in the community is key and we are hoping that this curriculum approach will encourage parents and families to engage more fully in their children’s learning and create strong home-school links.
We also have our school BAD learning model (Basic, Advancing, Deep) which is at the heart of all planning and ensures that children are given a range of opportunities to revisit learning at a deeper level and demonstrate mastery through higher order thinking and application of skills.
Our curriculum is designed so that whenever relevant we, ‘smash the curriculum together.’ An example of this would be when the mathematical learning about shape is taught through a Design and Technology project, such as designing and making packaging. Furthermore, the time of year when particular topics are taught is also considered. Sometimes, decisions may be made for logistical reasons such as availability of adults, spaces or resources in school. More often, factors that are taken into account when planning when to teach a particular subject/topic are as follows: best time of year/availability for trips and visitors, to coincide with festivals or annual events e.g. Chinese New Year, World Book Day, building upon previous skills etc.
Our curriculum design is planned in such a way that children are provided with regular opportunities to practise the skills that they have been taught. Alongside this, regular “Do it Now Activities’ (recall checks) are planned in every week to allow children to retrieve the knowledge and information that they have learned previously. Learning is revisited from that week’s learning, the previous weeks’ and even previous terms. Teachers keep the learning spinning by interleaving knowledge and skills because ‘Hermann Ebbinghaus’ forgetting curve theory’ teaches us that we have to forget learning to remember it long term but that spaced repetition will help us to commit information to our long term memory. Any children who are not on track with their learning are identified quickly and appropriate steps are taken to help them to keep up and catch up, such as pre-teaching, intervention groups, additional resources/scaffolding/adult support and so on.
Past pupils tell us that they particularly enjoyed whole school projects and year group performances.
“Everyone gets to perform. The shows are the best!”
Past pupils are complementary about the learning spaces inside and outside at our school. Past pupils have told us that they felt supported in their learning.
“I had support when I was struggling.”