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Curriculum

Religious Education, All children 

As a Catholic School, we attach the greatest importance to Religious Education in the life of our School. This not only applies to specific R.E. lessons but in the everyday interaction of school life, assemblies, meal times, play times and all the relationships that exist within St. Joseph’s. We try to help children to find a personal faith in God and to enjoy a sense of awe and wonder at His creation. We teach tolerance and respect for other faiths, races and cultures. The Parish Priest takes an active interest in the School and its religious life. Mass and liturgies are celebrated in the School each term. The School celebrates an act of collective worship each day, in class groups or as a whole school.

Foundation Stage

EARLY YEARS FOUNDATION STAGE – 3 TO 5 YEARS OF AGE

The Early Years Foundation Stage covers the period of learning for children in Nursery and Reception.  The curriculum is presented in a rich, stable, caring and effective environment that enables each child to realise their full potential.

 

The Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum is taught in ways that build on a child’s curiosity and interests, enabling them to learn through planned worthwhile play activities.  Children in the EYFS learn by playing and exploring, being active, and through creative and critical thinking which takes place both indoors and outside.

 

There are 7 areas of learning and development that comprise the curriculum’s framework; however every aspect of the curriculum is interrelated.  Children should mostly develop the 3 prime areas first.

 

These are: Communication and Language, Physical Development and Personal, Social and Emotional Development.

These prime areas are those most essential for your child’s healthy development and future learning.  As children grow, the prime areas will help them to develop skills in 4 specific areas.

 

These are: Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design.

 

All 7 areas are used to plan your child’s learning and activities and are designed to be really flexible so that staff can follow each child’s unique needs and interests.  Although young children do not separate learning into curriculum areas, and every aspect of the curriculum is interrelated and interdependent, the 7 areas form the framework on which the Early Years Foundation Stage is built. 

The principles which guide the work of all early years’ practitioners are grouped into four themes:

  • A Unique Child – every child is a unique child who is constantly learning and can be relilient, capable, confident and self-assured.
  • Positive Relationships – children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.
  • Enabling Environments – children learn and develop well in enabling environments, in which their experiences respond to their individual needs and there is a strong partnership between practitioners, parents and carers.
  • Learning and Development – children develop and learn in different ways.  The framework covers the education and care of all the children in early years provision, including children with special educational needs and disabilities.  Practitioners teach children by ensuring challenging, playful opportunities across the prime and specific areas of learning and development.

 

Whole School Curriculum Map

Cornerstones

 

We provide a full, broad and balanced curriculum based around the a scheme called Cornerstones.

With the new National Curriculum being introduced by the Government this year (2014-15) we have been working hard to refresh our school approach and provision for pupils. As part of this work we have implemented the new Cornerstones Curriculum, a nationally recognised approach for delivering outstanding learning opportunities for children.

What is the Cornerstones Curriculum?

The Cornerstones Curriculum is a creative and thematic approach to learning that is mapped to the new 2014 Primary National Curriculum to ensure comprehensive coverage of national expectations. Our new curriculum is delivered through Imaginative Learning Projects (ILPs) which provide a rich menu of exciting and motivating learning activities that make creative links between all aspects of our children’s learning. 

We believe children learn better when they are encouraged to use their imagination and apply their learning to engaging contexts. Our new curriculum  provides lots of learning challenges throughout the academic year that requires children to solve problems, apply themselves creatively and express their knowledge and understanding effectively across the curriculum.

Cornerstones also provide a rigorous essential skills framework that outlines the end of year expectations in all subjects. These essential skills are tied to activities and are age related so that staff can track children’s progress and identify their individual learning needs.

How it Works?

Children will progress through four stage of learning in each ILP – Engage, Develop, Innovate and Express. To find out more about these stages please click on the link through to Cornerstones website:

http://www.cornerstoneseducation.co.uk/Learning-Philosophy.aspx

St Joseph’s Curriculum presentation to parents

Educational Visits

 
Educational Visits are arranged by class teachers in support of various areas of the curriculum. They are an important part of the children’s education. Children in the juniors have the opportunity to make longer journeys which include staying away from home.
 
We also have a large number of visiting groups coming into the school, including theatre and music groups.
 

Supporting your child

 

Parents meet with class teachers early in the academic year to be given an overview of the year and advice and suggestions for supporting children during the year. Additional resources to help support your child at home can be found in the Parents section of the website.

For more information see the class pages in the Children's section of the website to see learning in action.

Improving Mathematics at St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School

 

The children will be practising mental maths skills in school and will be tested regularly. But in order to progress quickly and to develop instant recall, your child will need your help.

How to help at home

We would ask that you spend 10 minutes each day practising your child’s passport skills with them. This could be walking to school, in the car, at teatime, before bed – it doesn’t need to be a sit down, formal time. For most of the skills, you could try the same procedures:

  • eg number bonds to 10, you say 6, your child says 4
  • eg 3 x times table, you say 3, your child says 9
  • eg 4+3=? ?+4=7 3+?=7

Go on Mathletics www.mathletics.co.uk or other number computer games. Mathletics also supports other areas of maths such as shape, space, measure and data handling so please encourage your child to keep using it.

Thank you for all your support.

 

British Values…Gospel Values!

In 2013 the Department for Education said

“Keeping our children safe and ensuring schools prepare them for life in modern Britain could not be more important. This change is an important step towards ensuring we have a strong legal basis for intervening in those schools where this is an issue.”

“The vast majority of schools already promote British values. This is about making sure we have the tools we need to intervene if children are being let down.”

Schools are required to actively promote and not undermine “British Values”

The government has set out its definition of British Values as:

* democracy

* the rule of law

* individual liberty

* mutual respect

* tolerance of those of different faiths and beliefs

 

As a Catholic School we actively promote values, virtues and ethics that shape our pupils character and moral perspective, through the teachings of the Church. We are confident that our continued focus on the Gospel Values will give our pupils the necessary awareness of what it means to be a good citizen in Britain today, and embed in them the building blocks of a future successful and productive life.

Through our RE, PSHE, SEAL, Geography and promoting The  Common Good  we are able to make real links between the values of our pupils and the lives of others in their community, country and the world in general.

Through our Creative Curriculum we teach about democracy, civic responsibility, rules and laws, the monarchy, equality, values and virtues, environmental awareness and understanding of other faiths.

Through our mission statement and values we live out our “British Values”.