Curriculum

“Learning is made relevant, meaningful and stimulating”

Reading

Our aim is to provide children with support and challenge to ensure they enjoy reading, read with understanding and become independent, confident, proficient and critical readers. Reading underpins all aspects of learning throughout life and success and independence rely on becoming a successful reader.

The children in Foundation Stage and Key Stage One follow a daily synthetic phonics programme for reading and in Y2 for reading and spelling. Read Write Inc is used for the main teaching of phonics in school. Children who have not mastered the synthetic phonics in KS2 including new arrivals continue to receive this teaching in small groups.

Throughout the whole of school, in Literacy lessons, reading is taught through shared reading, guided reading and individual reading. Children are encouraged to read for enjoyment selecting from our vast collection of books in classrooms. From Y4 upwards pupils test their comprehension through the use of the Accelerated Reader programme where they read books and are tested on their comprehension through completing computer quizzes. They are also encouraged to use books to further their learning through, for example, research into a topic.

All children are provided with to with books to read at home and a reading record for parents to comment on their progress. Home reading books are drawn from different leveled schemes. Where possible, children read to adults individually and some small intervention groups are in place for children who are not making expected progress.

A proven synthetic phonic approach

Read Write Inc. combines 5 clear steps to ensure real success in literacy:

  • A systematic and dynamic whole-school approach
  • High quality literacy teaching
  • Inspiring whole-school literacy training
  • Effective assessment and grouping
  • Keeps parents fully supportive

7 out of 12 schools in the HMI Ofsted report Reading by six; ‘How the best schools do it’, use Read Write Inc. Phonics.

Find out more at http://www.oup.com/oxed/primary/rwi/

Writing

Our aim is to provide children with support and challenge to ensure they enjoy writing, write with understanding and become independent, confident, proficient and critical writers. All children should achieve level 2b+ at the end of KS1 and 4b+ at the end of KS2.

Writing is the ability to effectively communicate ideas, information and opinions through the printed word, in a wide range of contexts. Skilled writers understand the characteristics of writing’s many forms, and are able to adapt their style to suit a wide range of purposes. At Abbeyfield Primary Academyl we endeavour to equip children with the skills necessary to do this in Literacy lessons and throughout the curriculum.

We believe that writing is best when it comes from first hand experience. Visitors into school provide an excellent stimulus for writing and children also respond to drama, novels and visits. Early and emerging writers are supported through a language rich environment and have opportunities to write in all areas, both inside and outside the classroom. Cross curricular writing is developed through topic lessons.
You can download our writing policy here

Geography, History, Science, Art , Music and DT

At Firs Hill we take great pride in our curriculum. We have worked hard to create a curriculum that fosters enjoyment, independent learning, accelerated progress and achievement. The learning is relevant to our children, fosters a positive attitude, builds on previous learning and experience and raises aspirations.

The role of first hand experience is very important and we have a planned programme of visits which includes visits to the Deep in Hull, Think Tank Science Museum in Birmingham and The Yorkshire Wildlife park. Artists work in school alongside class teachers on a regular basis and our children regularly perform across the city. We believe it is important for children to have a say in their learning and when planning the curriculum teachers take the views and interests of the children into account to increase their engagement and motivation.

‘An outstanding curriculum in Key Stages 1 and 2 captures pupils’ interest and ensures their active and practical involvement in learning.’ – Ofsted 2011

Maths

We have recently adopted a new and dynamic whole school programme called ‘Maths Makes Sense’ or ‘MMS’. The author is Professor Richard Dunne who believes that Maths is actually learned more easily, pleasurably and effectively if children are taught from the start that it is based on symbolic logic. He thinks children should be educated at this early stage using mathematical symbols which are part of the universal language.

MMS is based on a learning system that recognises there are three main learning routes – the visual, the auditory and the kinaesthetic (learning by doing). The youngest children are frequently greatly assisted by being allowed to use the kinaesthetic mode and MMS makes effective use of simple props, the chief of which is the paper cup.

The act of moving cups from one table to another brings the concepts of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division to life in a way that children find intuitive and easy. The cups can easily be cut up into parts, enabling the child to see and feel the reality of fractions.

MMS has an important side-benefit for children who may have started school by regarding Maths as essentially difficult or intimidating. Once they realise that they are “good at Maths”, the confidence that they gain is extended to becoming “good at everything”.

The programme is currently used at Abbeyfield Primary Academy from Nursery to Year 3. It allows us to differentiate in the classroom by close screening of all children during the lesson. By monitoring the individual and ensuring that appropriate levels of support and extension are available, this makes it possible for every child to reach their potential. MMS provides a solid mathematical foundation which increases confidence, engagement, understanding and enjoyment for all pupils. It will be rolled out to Y4 in September 2013.

Find out more at http://www.oup.com/oxed/primary/mms

RE

‘Spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is outstanding’ Ofsted 2011

We learn about all religions during six theme days spread throughout the year when we suspend the curriculum. These days culminate in a celebration assembly where the children’s work is shared with parents and the rest of the School

Physical Education

PE is taught to all pupils and includes lessons in dance, gymnastics and games. All pupils are expected to wear the school PE kit. Whenever possible, games lessons take place outside. Currently Y4 pupils undertake a course of swimming lessons at Ponds Forge concentrating on learning to swim for non-swimmers and stroke improvement and personal survival for more experienced pupils.

After school clubs this year have included football, cricket, basketball, Zumba and Street Dance.

Personal, Social and Health Education including Citizenship

Work on PSHE and Citizenship takes place in every year group. It covers a wide range of topics including keeping safe, attitudes to others, self-esteem, relationships and coping with loss as well as work on keeping fit and healthy.

Foreign Languages

Coming Soon.

Parental Engagement

Coming Soon.

Homework

Please speak to Class teacher for homework days.