Together with the Spirit we will create an oasis where every child matters.
Ss Peter and Paul is committed to our Catholic Education with ‘Christ at the Centre’ of everything we do. We endeavour to promote God’s Values so that everything that happens in our school demonstrates God’s love for everyone.
Our overall curriculum intent is:
To enable our pupils to have a thirst for knowledge, a tool kit of skills which links all of the curriculum and an aspirational approach to the future, all of which are underpinned by Gospel values.
As we serve an area of high deprivation, we place great emphasis upon developing children’s speech and listening (oracy), vocabulary and cultural experiences. To meet the needs of all children, including children with SEND, we ensure learning is sequential, repetitive and has literacy and language skills at its core.
We aim to ensure that our children experience a wide breadth of study based upon, and cross referenced with, the statutory requirements of the National Curriculum. We ensure that children, by the end of each key stage, have developed a long-term memory of ambitious semantic and procedural knowledge in all National Curriculum subjects. Our content is subject specific. We make intra-curricular links to strengthen the schema. Continuous provision, in the form of daily routines, replaces the teaching of some aspects of the curriculum, and in other cases provides retrieval practice for previously learned content.
Our curriculum is based on evidence from cognitive science; three main principles underpin it:
- Learning is most effective with spaced repetition
- Interleaving helps pupils to discriminate between topics and aids long-term retention
- Retrieval of previously learned content is frequent and regular, which increases both storage and retrieval strength.
Children with SEND access the full curriculum with reasonable adjustments and scaffolding. In some cases children may follow their own bespoke curriculum as directed by other agencies and their EHCP.
In order to meet the needs of our unique school community we will implement our curriculum using the following strategies and key principles.
- Our curriculum is based on Gospel Values with Christ at the centre of everything we do.
- The planned curriculum is broad to meet the spiritual, moral, social, academic and cultural development of the pupils. All pupils access every aspect of the curriculum and enjoy a wide range of additional activities including clubs, visits and visitors.
- Teaching for mastery is promoted across all subjects and disciplines.
- Cooperative learning behaviours are used across our school – Active Listening, Everyone Engaged, Explain and Elaborate, Job Done, Teach and Support.We believe these behaviours increase engagement, enable positive behaviour for learning, empower our children and ultimately lead to accelerated progress. (Based on the research of William Glasser – We learn 70% of what we discuss with others, 80% of what we experience personally and 95% of what we teach to someone else.)
- English is taught consistently across school using quality texts and a toolkit that integrates all elements of the subject with reading as a key focus.
- A love of reading is promoted across all subjects and disciplines, both for pleasure and enjoyment as well as to support academic learning.
- Children’s understanding and application of tier 2 and 3 vocabulary is developed through our English and wider curriculum.
- Metacognition and critical thinking are planned for and taught across the curriculum.
- Opportunities are developed for children to revisit and link their learning through fluency practice, retrieval practice and interleaving of foundation subjects.Learning as a shift of knowledge from short term to the long term memory is prioritised in the way in which the curriculum is implemented.
(Rosenshine’s Ten Key Principles of Effective Instruction in lessons.)
- Cultural capital gives our children the vital background knowledge required to be informed and thoughtful members of our community and society who understand and believe in British values (Democracy, English Law, Accountability, Individual Liberty, Equality, Tolerance).
- Utilise coaches and specialist teachers to support the teaching of PE, MFL and music.
- Enable children to become digital citizens through the use of new and mobile technologies.
- Opportunities are embedded for children to develop resilience and awareness of their own mental health through whole school, class, group and individual programmes and support- emotional resilience programmes, counselling, Mental Health Awareness Weeks, Mindfulness, Hearts and Minds groups etc.
- Opportunities for children to know how to safeguard themselves through programmes such as Kidsafe, RAP, Safety Works, Community Police links, Online / Offline safety, Road Safety programmes, Cycling Proficiency, Swimming in KS2 etc.
- We teach science and foundation subjects through a focus on key concepts, vocabulary, knowledge and skills with clear links to NC Programmes of Study.
- Our curriculum distinguishes between subject topics and key concepts. Subject topics are specific aspects of subjects that are studied.
- Key concepts tie together topics into meaningful schema. The same concepts are explored in a wide breadth of topics. Through this ‘forwards-and-backwards’ engineering of the curriculum, children return to the same concepts over and over and gradually build an understanding of them.
- Knowledge organisers in each subject give children a way of expressing their understanding of key concepts.
- Cognitive science tells us that working memory is limited and that cognitive load is too high if children are rushed through content. This limits the acquisition of long-term memory. Cognitive science also tells us that in order for children to become creative thinkers, or have a greater depth of understanding, they must first master the basics, which takes time.
School uses a wide range of methods and analysis to evaluate our teaching and learning within our curriculum design. This includes pupil achievement data, attendance rates, behaviour, learning walks, curriculum reviews, pupil voice and parent questionnaires.
We want our children to be the best version of themselves; learners who are motivated to and know how to learn. We see the greatest impact of the curriculum to be high rates of pupil progress. Progress in:
- Pupils’ physical, moral and intellectual talents that inform their choices and actions as people.
- The development of knowledge: Progress in knowing more, remembering more, making links and applying knowledge.
- Pupil understanding of how well they are doing and what they need to do to get better.