The development of reading and writing skills are the highest priority. The English curriculum develops children’s ability to listen, speak, read and write for a wide range of purposes. The use of written and verbal language across the curriculum enables children to communicate ideas, views and feelings creatively and imaginatively. As they become enthusiastic and critical readers of stories, poetry, play scripts, non-fiction and media texts, children gain an understanding of how language works.
Children use their knowledge, skills and understanding in speaking, listening and writing across a range of different contexts. We strive to ensure that all children receive a well-rounded learning experience when reading, writing, speaking and listening, which will equip them with the fundamental tools to achieve, throughout their learning journey and beyond. It is our intention to immerse children in the wonders of high-quality texts to instil a love for reading, a passion for discovery and a confidence to explore their imagination.
Mathematics is taught daily and routinely, each lesson progressing from the one before. Through this progressive block teaching approach to maths, the aim is for individuals to be confident in each yearly objective and develop their ability to use this knowledge to develop a greater depth of mathematical understanding to solve varied fluency problems as well as problem solving and reasoning questions. Mathematics is a creative and interconnected subject and we use a range of resources (including White Rose, Power Maths, Mastery approaches and NCETM documents) and practical equipment to present Maths in many different forms and contexts. We work to reinforce and consolidate work where possible with a focus on repetition of basic skills through tasks such as starter of the lessons, Rockstar times tables and basic skills tasks.
As Maths teaches us how to make sense of the world around us through developing a child’s ability to calculate, to reason and to solve problems, we work to build in real life contexts to help our children recognise the important skills needed for the wider world. It enables children to understand and appreciate relationships and pattern in both number and space in their everyday lives.
Science enables children to broaden their scientific view of the world around them and develop a deeper understanding of a wide range of scientific ideas. Children are encouraged to do this in a number of different ways which are often enquiry based and practical. Through exploring, talking about, testing and developing ideas children gain a deeper understanding and are able to observe patterns, make connections and draw their own conclusions.
Technology is changing the lives of everyone. Our vision is to deliver a high quality computing education, which equips children to interact with others and the world around them safely, responsibly and creatively both now and in the future. Children learn through developing computational thinking and interacting with a range of media to become confident, independent learners able to utilise a range of ever changing technology.
Design and Technology
Design Technology helps children to become problem solvers through practical tasks, using creativity and imagination. It represents an essential aspect of individual development of knowledge, concepts, skills and attitudes that enable pupils to engage in a broad range of creative activities in response to identifying needs and problems. It involves the relationship of ideas, judgements and manipulation materials, systems and equipment. It generates creative capability that can be applied to real life situations.
At the forefront of their geography learning children will develop geographer skills such as use of maps, atlases, globes and digital/computer mapping. Children will also learn to use the eight points of a compass, four and six-figure grid references, symbols and key (including the use of Ordnance Survey maps) to build their knowledge of the United Kingdom and the wider world. Fieldwork is also integral to the geography curriculum and children will regularly carry out studies to observe, measure, record and present human and physical features of our local area. Children continue to develop locational knowledge, progressing from knowledge of counties and cities within the UK through to
the continents, countries, capitals, lines and hemispheres of the world as they travel through school. They will understand geographical similarities and differences through the study of human geography and physical geography including climate zones, mountains, land use and trade links.
Children gain a chronologically secure knowledge and understanding of British, local and world history and use historical terms. They can answer historically valid questions about change, cause, similarity and difference and construct informed responses using evidence and primary sources. Teaching focuses on changes in Britain from the Stone Age to the Iron Age, the Ancient Egyptians and Greeks, the Roman Empire and its impact on Britain including County Durham, Britain’s settlement by Anglo-Saxons, the Viking and Anglo-Saxon struggle for the Kingdom of England and what has changed since the Romans left. Children also study the Mayans as a non-European topic. Local history studies are carried out to ensure the children have knowledge of their own history. These include a study of a local individual with a link to mining and Durham’s involvement in WW1.
We aim to introduce children to a wide range of musical activities that will develop their music skills and musical enjoyment. Encouraging their ability to listen attentively to a varied range of songs, classical music and traditional melodies; children will appraise music, discussing their opinions using musical language and apply this knowledge when learning to play the ukulele and a variety of percussion instruments. As children progress, they will learn to recognise musical notation, using this to create their own compositions, and develop an understanding of the origin of the music and the era in which it was created.
Art, craft and design stimulates children’s creativity and imagination. It provides the opportunity for children to respond to the world around them by planning and designing their own individual and unique pieces of art. Through the exploration of artists, children are given a wide range of visual, tactile and sensory experiences which they can then review and respond too. Through the work of these artists and designers, they explore ideas and meanings as well as learning to make informed judgements and aesthetic and practical decisions. Children are introduced to drawing and mark-making, clay, textiles, sculpture, painting, print making and collage. These areas are developed continuously throughout the school from year 3 to year 6. It is important that children are given the opportunity to express themselves through art and be allowed to make their own art form decisions whilst being able explain why they chose certain colours, tone, textures and patterns to enhance a final piece of work.
Physical education develops children physically, socially, emotionally and cognitively. Children develop skills to use their body effectively and efficiently, with increasing confidence. Learning takes place in the key areas of athletics, dance, games, gymnastics, outdoor adventurous activity and swimming, while acquiring an understanding of the importance of a healthy and active lifestyle. Sport clubs and teams are run as extra-curricular activities and we are regularly involved in a wide range of sports festivals. You find out more about our PE and Sport on our website.
Modern Foreign Languages (MFL)
Learning a foreign language is a lifelong skill that promotes and encourages broader cultural understanding and can lead to a huge range of opportunities as children grow up. Throughout school children will study oracy, literacy and intercultural understanding in a wide variety of ways.
Religious education is provided in line with and meets statutory requirements, which are in accordance with the locally agreed syllabus for Durham County.
Through this agreed syllabus, children explore shared human experiences and raise questions to the meaning and purpose of those experiences. Teaching and activities develop knowledge and understanding of religion through exploration of the beliefs and practices of the principal world faiths represented in Great Britain. We aim to develop children’s knowledge and understanding of religious and non-religious views, as well as develop the skills of critical thinking and personal reflection. Through this, we promote awareness, respect and sensitivity for the traditions of other people.