Our school has developed its own ‘Creative Curriculum’, which is based on the National Curriculum.
To view a copy of the Government’s National Curriculum, click below:
Primary School National Curriculum (Jul 2014).pdf
What Is The Intent Of Our Curriculum?
The basic intent of our curriculum is to provide all pupils with the knowledge, skills and cultural capital they need to succeed in life - this includes nurturing pupils’ personal traits and qualities as well as developing their behaviour and attitudes so that they are afforded a strong grounding for future success.
Intention 1: Knowledge/Skills - To develop the appropriate subject specific knowledge, skills and understanding as set out in the National Curriculum, our personalised Curriculum and beyond, so that children can flourish, reach and exceed their potential.
- All pupils will secure firm foundations in English and Mathematics – this will underpin an emergent excellence in other subjects.
- Our innovative, inspiring and well-balanced ‘Creative Curriculum’ builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills of all children, whatever their starting points, as they progress from EYFS to Key stage 2.
- We have designed a curriculum that will not only secure high standards in Reading, Writing and Maths, but is strong, aspirational and ambitious across all subjects so that we open up a world of opportunities and interests to our pupils, thereby developing the whole child. All subjects are equally valued.
- We seek curriculum themes, which will excite, inspire and motivate learning at all ages.
- Our focus on curriculum development promotes engaging and purposeful teaching and learning experiences, chosen to enhance the curriculum and combined to create diverse and rich opportunities from which children can develop a genuine desire to learn and develop a range of transferable skills.
- At the heart of our curriculum is the desire to make learning fun, engage children, develop positive, relationships and provide children with a wide range of opportunities to learn in different ways.
- All children are exposed to creative, sporting and cultural opportunities, along with a rich diet of extra-curricular activities, visitors, class visits and discovery days.
- Leaving our school with a memorable collection of learning experiences, it is the intention that pupils from Orchard will move onto secondary school well prepared for the next stage of their education and with the skills, knowledge and understanding that will enable them to thrive.
Intention 2: Personal Development – developing the character of our learners to enable all children to flourish and to be the very best they can be.
- We believe in a values based education that educates the heart as well as the mind. Along with high academic standards, there is a strong focus on developing children’s moral, spiritual, social and cultural understanding, alongside physical development, well-being and mental health.
- Through our rich and varied curriculum, we promote positivity, happiness and self-esteem.
- The school places great emphasis on nurturing kind, respectful and honest citizens.
- Through our dynamic and challenging curriculum, we strive to raise aspirations, create a sense of personal pride in achievement and provide a purpose and relevance for learning.
- Every child is recognised as a unique individual with special qualities and strengths and we celebrate and welcome differences within our school community.
- We provide a highly inclusive environment; we know our children inside out, and use this knowledge to motivate, encourage and care for them throughout their time at our school.
- Through our curriculum all children, are exposed to enrichment opportunities which allow them to experience the awe and wonder of the world in which they live.
- Pupils are empowered through the offer of a wide range of quality extra-curricular opportunities for personal development; community involvement is also an important part of our curriculum, in order to facilitate the learning of new skills and the sharing of experiences.
- We enrich the curriculum so that it celebrates difference, enables pupils to gain an understanding of right from wrong, and ensures that pupils develop a strong moral core as they move into each new phase of learning.
- Our curriculum is designed to develop in our pupils, a holistic set of values that will enable them to live safe, happy and healthy lives.
- We wish for every child to leave us well prepared with a broad skill set, interest in the world around them, and a range of life-long learning experiences which will inspire them throughout their future education and beyond, contributing positively to their community and wider society.
Intention 3: Behaviour and Attitudes - We are determined that our pupils should develop behaviours and attitudes that they can draw upon to be effective learners and successful in society and the world of work.
- We are a therapeutic school, teaching positive behaviours so that our pupils have respect for themselves and others; demonstrate high moral values and behave in a polite and safe manner.
- Our curriculum is designed to develop confident, articulate, and resilient children who are ready to face the challenges of modern society.
- We want to build the habits of ambitious capable learners by embedding ‘Character Education’ within our curriculum, enabling our pupils to have the requisite skills to:
- Set themselves high standards and expectations (we want them to be ambitious and to have dreams and aspirations)
- Become resilient learners, with a growth mindset, who are willing to try new things, learn from their mistakes, reflect on their learning and when faced with challenges, have the mindset of “I don’t know it yet”
- Develop a body of knowledge and have skills to connect and apply the knowledge in different contexts
- Develop curiosity and the motivation to ask questions
- Enjoy the challenge of solving problems, using logic and rational skills to build critical thinking (reasoning skills)
- Communicate effectively; explaining succinctly the ideas and concepts they are learning about and listening to other’s view points
- Use imagination and intuition to explore possibilities and look at things in different ways (creative thinking and problem solving
- Leave our school as confident, independent students with self-belief, transferable skills and a readiness to be ‘learners for life’ and succeed in whatever path they take.
Designed to challenge, engage and motivate, the ultimate goal of our creative knowledge-rich curriculum is that our learners progress both academically, personally and socially and become successful, confident individuals, who make a positive contribution to the community and to society.
In order to equip our children to thrive in an increasingly complex and rapidly changing world, our curriculum is continually evolving therefore.
Our Curriculum Aims
- The underpinning principles of our curriculum are committed to providing quality and excellence through an exciting, stimulating environment that stretches and develops the child as a whole.
- To provide a broad and balanced curriculum that includes our statutory obligations within the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum and the National Curriculum.
- To enhance pupils’ individual capabilities, encouraging individuals to become independent, self-motivated and self-disciplined learners and members of the school and the community.
- To encourage lively, enquiring minds and enthusiasm towards school and education.
- To build confidence, self-respect, self-esteem and a sense of responsibility in each child; to help pupils to work co-operatively with consideration for others; to encourage pride in our school and community and to establish high standards in work and behaviour.
- To ensure that our pupils become literate and numerate.
- To develop enquiry, problem-solving and creative skills and IT capability in line with the aims of the National Curriculum.
- To enable each pupil to develop physical awareness, stressing the values of healthy living and an understanding of the workings of the human body.
- To develop in pupils respect for other people’s cultures and origins, and to reject biased attitudes towards sexism, racism and disability.
- To provide opportunities for spiritual growth. To help children to consider their own beliefs and those of others.
- To develop an understanding of an ever-changing world concerning work, leisure and the environment.
- Our curriculum is designed, organised and planned to ensure every child receives an appropriate mix of academic and personal development which means that in practice it places equal importance on core (reading, writing, maths) and foundation subjects (e.g. history, PSHE, PE, art etc.)
- We also place a high priority on ensuring the physical and mental well-being of children is met, understanding that they will not be successful learners unless they are emotionally secure. We provide for this through our well-planned approach to social, moral, cultural and spiritual (SMSC) development.
- Our balanced approach to the curriculum is not, however, at the expense of high standards in core subject areas. Enabling children to reach national expectations and above is of vital importance to us if they are to succeed at the next stage of their education and go on to achieve their aspirations
- Our ‘Creative Curriculum’, which is taught in a two-year rolling programme, has been designed to foster a life-long love of learning, through adopting a practical, and thematic, cross-curricular approach to learning.
- The curriculum offer at Orchard takes children on a different narrative each half term using the Mantle of the Expert approach. The children are part of the ‘story’ they are following, and this ensures that every piece of work the children do within the adventure is meaningful and has a real purpose. This creates the ‘botherdness’ of learning and ensures that the children are fully engaged.
- We work hard to include the 'wow' factor to motivate and inspire our learners and free up additional time in the school week to enrich our children’s learning – our teachers have real freedom to own the curriculum and be truly creative with the learning experiences they give their children. A stunning start through a Mantle of the Expert (MOE) ‘Inspiration Day’ therefore launches the learning and hooks the children from the very beginning. (We also offer additional opportunities such as Discovery Days, Themed Days, specialist workshops, French teaching in KS2, residential visits, outdoor learning, trips and visits and whole class instrumental lessons).
- The focus for our Learning Adventure is to provide contextualised, purposeful learning that develops ‘life skills’ so that children are ‘secondary’ ready by the time they leave us. The journeys in learning foster the development of writers, mathematicians, artists, designers, historians and geographers etc.
- Teaching and learning is underpinned by cognitive challenge. Teachers use the model of ‘Basic, Advancing, Deep’ to ensure differentiation is appropriate and does not place a glass ceiling on learning for any child, no matter their ability or needs.
- Various levels of challenge occur through careful and strategic task matching and questioning where staff create the correct conditions for learning by delivering learning centred around an essential ‘Question for Learning’ which provides opportunities for depth of learning.
- The learning environment is designed in a way that engages and inspires children; it is linked to current learning and language rich to support the children’s vocabulary, oracy and writing development throughout the Learning Adventure.
- The design of our curriculum ensures that cross-curricular links drive the Learning Adventure in a purposeful and contextualised way. In all our Learning Adventures these cross-curricular links offer a creative way to develop children's knowledge, skills and understanding while motivating them to learn through stimulating, interconnected topics.
- Each Learning Adventure crosses subject boundaries thus allowing for investigations that engage children's imagination. It also gives teachers opportunities to encourage active enquiry, taking the initiative, and discussion and debate by children.
- Long-term plans and coverage grids ensure that pupils receive their entitlement to the whole primary curriculum. They map the curriculum for the school over a whole year and are shared with all stakeholders.
- We rigorously drive home knowledge (facts and information) which underpins pupils’ learning and enables the progressive application of skills in a range of contexts so that our children will have the tools needed to be successful independent learners for life. Each Learning Adventure therefore has clearly identified main subject drivers for progress as well as end goals (planning with the end in mind); these provide the framework and key focus whilst cross-curricular opportunities are rightly maximised.
- Knowledge, skills and understanding is built up over time to ensure long-term retention as children have the opportunity to practice and rehearse their learning over time.
- Connections between concepts provide the basis for progression.
- Teaching is typified by hands on, practical learning in a creative context both inside school and outdoors. The classroom environment fully immerses the children in their learning. They are stimulating and motivating places to learn and display a mixture of inspiration for learning, celebration of learning and support for learning. The journey through the adventure is clearly evident on the classroom walls. A great emphasis is placed on providing a broad curriculum ensuring every subject is valued.
- Our Curriculum has also been designed to ensure that each and every child can ' live life in all its fullness' by offering stimulating and awe-inspiring learning experiences with values, wellbeing and character education at its heart.
- Effective learning characteristics, including being ambitious, reflective and imaginative drive teaching and learning. There is a high focus on developing children’s moral, spiritual, social and cultural understanding and in ensuring that children are well-prepared for life in modern Britain. Thus, we aim to develop outward-looking pupils who are able to engage in learning about themselves and have an understanding of the wider world and its complex cultures.
- Learning is supported through the use of knowledge organisers that provide children with scaffolding that supports them to retain new facts and vocabulary in their long-term memory. Knowledge organisers are used for pre-teaching, to support home learning and also as a part of daily review.
- Our Skills Progression Grids and curriculum mapping charts (Medium Term Planning) show how the comprehensive whole school Long Term Plan successfully builds pupils' skills and understanding. The progression grids ensure a sequence of learning between each Key Stage, from year group to year group, as well as including additional knowledge and skills for pupils working at a Greater Depth.
- These grids form our foundation subject tracking system and capture our ongoing assessments of each child showing us how well our curriculum is being implemented as well as how our children are progressing through the curriculum and the impact it has on their learning. It enables teachers to plan subsequent learning opportunities so that individual needs are met and children can make progress towards the end of year expectations.
- Judgements relating to end of year expectations are made at the end of the academic year and shared with parents.
- Our curriculum is raising standards as our pupils are enthused and inspired by our exciting offer which has led to intellectual engagement and a deeper level of learning in all subject areas due to our focus on depth and long-term memory and not merely coverage.
- The high staff morale and dedication of the staff to provide the very best experience for all children means that all staff are completely on board with delivering an original and inventive curriculum to our children.
- There is a strong culture of collaboration and teamwork, which has created an effective and creative learning culture. Sharing values and ethos with all the staff, learning from others, promoting teamwork and developing a distributed style has had a super effective impact on the shaping of our curriculum.
- Everything we do at Orchard comes from our belief that every child can reach for the stars and shine, that they will be supported 100% to be confident, respectful and happy learners who have high expectations of themselves and others.
- We are successful in helping our children to reach their full potential and in becoming confident, happy and respectful individuals who have a thirst for knowledge and a true passion to succeed.
- Happy, confident, well behaved and well mannered, we feel Orchard Primary School certainly has a positive and rich impact on their lives.
Please click on the link below to view the Creative Curriculum titles studied at Orchard:
Creative Curriculum LTP 2019.pdf
Please click on the link below to view our 'Teaching & Learning Policy':
‘Everyone’s Welcome’ – teaching children about equality and diversity
At Orchard, we are committed to preparing our children for life in the diverse society, which is modern Britain today.
As a school community therefore, it is important for us to continue to commit to the shared values that diversity is a strength and an asset; that every individual has equal human value and that a secure and safe environment, as well as peaceful conflict resolution, are essential to learning and to society.
Using the ‘Everyone’s Welcome’ programme to promote an ethos of inclusion and tolerance, we make our children aware of the Equalities Act 2010 through picture books/stories, drama, discussion and assemblies. The focus of the programme is around noticing, celebrating and developing resilience around diversity.
The work we do is not a one-time conversation, but rather a continual process of education through an open and ongoing reflection.
Our aim is to foster an environment where all members of our community feel welcome, valued, and accepted so that our children leave primary school happy and excited about living in a world full of difference and diversity, whether that difference is through ethnicity, gender, ability, age, sexual orientation or religion.
How will we deliver the programme?
Class teachers will deliver the programme throughout the year using developmentally appropriate picture books.
All school staff will promote and recognise the ‘Everyone’s Welcome’ ethos as part of the school day.
Assemblies will support and explore related topics and promote the inclusive ethos.
Why is it important?
It is important we create a school culture in which children, staff and the whole school community work together to foster an environment of inclusivity through effective spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) and character education.
It is vital that our pupils can discuss inappropriate and discriminative language and understand how to address boundaries in order to prepare them for a future in modern Britain.
We strive to ensure that our pupils are surrounded by a consistent message:
- There are no outsiders at our school – everyone is welcome
- Everyone is different
- We like being different
- We are all equal in our difference
- I can get along with you even if we are different
- We live in the U.K.; our British values support this and the law says this too
Relationships and Sex Education (RSE)
As a part of your child’s education at Orchard, we promote personal wellbeing and development through a comprehensive Personal, Social, Health and Economic (PSHE) education programme.
During the Summer Term, your child’s class will be taking part in lessons that will include the relationships and sex education (RSE) aspect of this programme.
Lessons will be taught in age-appropriate ways that reflects the children’s maturity.
Content will cover concepts relating to:
- Healthy relationships, including friendships
- Growing and changing, including puberty and personal hygiene
- Keeping safe
- Sexual reproduction, including knowledge of the sexual organs, conception and birth
All RSE teaching takes place in a safe learning environment and is underpinned by our school ethos and values.
The scheme of work for each year group can be viewed below:
RSE Scheme of Work.pdf
It was drafted with reference to the Sex Education Forum’s Curriculum Design Tool as well as the PSHE Association’s Programme of Study to secure full coverage of relevant objectives from its three Core Themes: Health and Wellbeing, Relationships, and Living in the Wider World.
Developing Pupils' Cultural Capital
What is Cultural Capital?
Cultural capital is the accumulation of knowledge, behaviours, and skills that a pupil can draw upon and which demonstrates their cultural awareness, knowledge and competence; it is one of the key ingredients a student will draw upon to be successful in society, their career and the world of work.
At Orchard Primary School, we recognise that for pupils to aspire and be successful academically and in the wider areas of their lives, they need to be given rich and sustained opportunities to develop their cultural capital.
Please follow the link below to see an overview of how we give pupils opportunities to enhance their lives through a broad and diverse range of exciting experiences:
Cultural Capital at Orchard Primary School.pdf