We feel that English language skills, both spoken and written, are of prime importance to enable children to communicate in all aspects of life. The National Curriculum for English covers the areas of Speaking and Listening, Reading and Writing, including handwriting and spelling. In Speaking and Listening our children are taught to discuss, tell stories, describe events and take part in drama activities. In school our children are surrounded by and exposed to a wide range of literature to enable them to enjoy books, become reflective readers and read for a purpose. Our approaches to reading include shared reading, guided group reading and individual reading. For individual reading the school currently uses a wealth of reading schemes, colour coded to levels of difficulty, to allow breadth and extension as the children’s reading develops. The children regularly borrow books from our well stocked library to take home and share. In writing, our children are taught the skills which enable them to become independent and competent writers. Beginning in reception, the children have regular sessions to practise the correct formation of letters. Handwriting skills are further developed through Year 1 and by the end of Year 2 most children begin to join letters. The teaching of creative writing, handwriting and spelling encourages children to write with confidence, fluency, understanding and, most importantly, enjoyment.
Mathematics is a crucial tool in everyday life, enabling children to explore and make sense of their world. Our children are provided with lots of interesting opportunities to enjoy and have fun investigating numbers and solving problems. We aim to develop a sound understanding of the number system with an emphasis on the development of mental arithmetic and on applying mathematics to real life situations. From the start of Reception, in line with the early learning goals, children explore numbers through planned practical experiences and also through more formal numeracy sessions as the year progresses. In Year 1 and Year 2 we follow the National Curriculum to develop mathematical understanding, skills and confidence. There is a daily maths lesson in which children learn to apply these number concepts.
We teach Science with an emphasis on an investigative approach, which gives the children the opportunity to study and learn about the world around them through their immediate environment. We encourage our children to observe, investigate, question and predict for themselves through science-based and cross-curricular activities to enable them to develop a secure and practical understanding on which to base future scientific learning.
Computing involves the processing and presentation of information. The children work with a range of digital devices and learn how to program them to follow a simple sequence of instructions. They learn how to manipulate data in a range of formats including text, images and music and are encouraged to develop logical thinking through the use of different computer programs and directional toys. We also teach the children how to communicate safely online.
History gives children the opportunity to start to appreciate the differences between past and present. They learn about things that have happened and about the lives of people in the past. We use a cross curricular approach and the children have the opportunity to experience a variety of activities including role play areas, historical drama sessions, museum visits and special events such as a workshop spent making traditional toys.
Geography encourages the children to develop their skills to gain an increased understanding of the rapidly changing world in which they are living. They learn about their immediate surroundings in school and our local area, as well as other places within the UK and in other countries. Using a range of technology, the children interpret and draw maps, undertake field studies and collect and interpret data. We look at the quality of our environment and encourage the children to think about how they can look after our world.
We encourage the understanding and enjoyment of music through an active involvement in listening, composing and performing. The children have the opportunity to experience “live music” and enjoy vocal and instrumental music-making through nursery rhymes, tradition and modern songs and percussion instruments. A Music Festival is held each year to which local schools are invited. We also hold after-school recorder groups for children in Year 2.
Personal Social Health Education and Citizenship
Through our PSHE and Citizenship work we aim to promote the well-being of all our children. We do this by encouraging independence, confidence and responsibility. We aim to equip our children to make healthy choices and develop a safer lifestyle and to help them to develop positive relationships and respect the differences between people. PSHE is taught through activities such as Circle Time, drama and class discussions. As recognition of the breadth of opportunities and experiences given to our pupils in understanding how to keep and stay healthy, we have received the National Healthy Schools Award.
SRE (Sex and Relationships Education) is taught as part of our PSHE education. We aim to foster self-esteem, respect for others and an understanding of themselves and the world about them. Children are taught SRE in an age-appropriate way through the themes of friendship, our feelings, growth and change.
Our lessons are based on Stockport’s ‘Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education’. In RE we learn about religions by finding out what people believe and how they express this through their religious practices. We encourage pupils to reflect upon, explore and express their own responses towards religious ideas. Throughout the school, learning is based on the Christian faith with comparisons to other world religions. The children attend a daily whole school assembly where our collective act of worship takes place. This consists of a simple thought for the day, singing, reflecting on music and a school family prayer. Parents have the right to withdraw their children from Collective Worship, RE or SRE. Alternative arrangements will be made as appropriate.
Design and Technology
We have a very practical and ‘hands on’ approach to Design and Technology. The children investigate how and why things work. They experiment with different joins and mechanisms to see which method is fit for purpose. They then design, make and evaluate both 2D and 3D items which are linked with their topics.
Physical Education plays a vital role in laying the foundation for lifelong participation in sport and recreation. Our PE programme is designed to promote physical activity, the development of skills, a healthy lifestyle, positive attitudes and an awareness of safety. We teach a balanced programme of gymnastics, dance, indoor and outdoor games. We also offer after-school clubs to develop the children’s interest in sports and to teach basic skills.
Art and Design
We develop our children’s creativity and imagination through a wide variety of art and design activities. We encourage them to regularly explore colour, shape, line, space, form, pattern and texture. Our children enjoy experimenting with different media (including paint, graphite, charcoal, pastels, ink, fabric and clay) and are taught a wide range of techniques such as drawing, painting, printing, batik, collage, sculpture and digital art. Our children also learn the importance of great artists, craftspeople and designers from different times and cultures.
All children have the opportunity to learn French. The children learn through songs, games and role play. They gain an understanding of both the French language and culture of France.