From September 2014 schools in England introduced a new National Curriculum. Academy schools have some flexibility about which aspects they choose to adopt. At Harrowbarrow, we believe in a broad and balanced curriculum, which builds skills and knowledge progressively at each stage of learning. Our long term plans for each curriculum area are currently broken down into ‘I can’ style learning objectives which build progressively upon skills previously learnt at the different National Curriculum levels.
We have adopted a thematic approach to learning, where classes learn through a selected topic each term. We encourage our learners to participate in planning these topics, enabling us to personalise learning to their interests and enabling them to follow their own lines of enquiry. Each teacher publishes their medium term plan, outlining the areas to be covered by the termly topic, on the class web pages to share with parents the learning journey their children will undertake across the term.
If you would like further information about our curriculum provision please contact the headteacher or a member of the teaching staff.
Please click on the logo to view the skills progression from Year 1 to Year 6.
Art & Design Computing Design Technology
Geography History French
PE RE Science
English Maths 1 Maths 2
Phonics & Reading in the EYFS and at KS1
From their first day in school our pupils are taught to read using a synthetic phonics approach. Synthetic phonics is a way of teaching reading. Children are taught to read letters or groups of letters by saying the sound(s) they represent. Children can then start to read words by blending (synthesising) the sounds together to make a word. This daily programme starts with the listening to and saying of sounds, before moving on to the reading and writing of them. We don’t use any single scheme for this, but a combination off materials and resources.
All our children are expected to practise reading daily at home. This enables them to confidently apply their phonic knowledge when decoding new words in reading and to develop a growing understanding of what they have read. All our reading books are banded according to different reading levels. We use a number of different schemes, including Oxford Tree Tops, Fireflies, Read Write Inc., Collins Big Cat and Jelly & Bean.
The DfE have recently reinforced the need “to create and enforce a clear and rigorous expectation on all schools to promote the fundamental British values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs.”
The Government set out its definition of British values in the 2011 Prevent Strategy, and these values were reiterated in 2014.
At Harrowbarrow School these values have always been fundamental to the teaching and learning our pupils receive. They are reinforced regularly and in the following ways:
- Our children democratically elect two members from their year group to represent them on the school council annually. At the start of each year the new members then elect the senior officers and review their constitution. Council meetings are held once a week and allow pupils to have a say in the running of the school. They will make decisions on items such charity fund raising, school dinner menu choices, playtime equipment and contribute to policy changes. The school council has also given presentations to governors. This year the members will be mentored by another school council in their aim to achieve a PADL (Promoting Active Democracy Loudly) award.
- Annual stakeholder surveys are completed by pupils and the information gathered is used by the leadership of the school to affect positive change.
- Class and school rules are reviewed and agreed by the pupils at the start of each year.
- Last year the Year 6 pupils visited the Houses of Parliament to learn about the workings of Government and to experience life in Westminster. They observed both the Houses of Commons and Lords in sitting and learnt about the rich history of the Palace of Westminster. They also took part in a Making Laws workshop which developed their understanding of democracy. Significantly, they received a visit from a local MP, who discussed relevant issues and concerns with them.
- Last autumn term our whole school assemblies had a ‘Democracy’ theme where the children were challenged to consider what the minimum voting age should be and whether the Suffragettes were right to act as they did.
- During the build up the elections in May 2015, our Y5/6 pupils created their won political parties, developed manifestos and canvassed support from across the school. Following their own elections, the Green Party were elected!
- A local Southeast Cornwall parliamentary candidate met with Y5/6 in the build up to the May election. He talked about his work and his views about education. The children asked him questions at the end about further topics of interest.
The Rule of Law
- The importance of Laws, whether they be those that govern the class, the school, or the country, are consistently reinforced throughout regular school days, as well as when dealing with behaviour and through school assemblies. Daily awards (merits) and weekly certificates (HT awards and bookmarks) recognise pupil achievements and similarly pupils are held to account for any behaviour that falls below the standards expected by the school. The school’s behaviour policy promotes reward for those who follow school rules and details the sanctions for those who don’t.
- The importance of obeying rules/laws was reinforced during Year 6’s visit to the Houses of
- Pupils are taught the value and reasons behind laws, that they govern and protect us, the
responsibilities that this involves and the consequences when laws are broken.
- Annual visits from people who help us, such as the Police, Fire Service and RNLI Lifeguards, help
reinforce this message.
- Last year we introduced a Restorative Thinking programme into our PSHE lessons in KS2 to further help children think about the consequences of breaking rules and laws.
- Within school, pupils are actively encouraged to make choices, knowing that they are in a safe and supportive environment. As a school we provide clear boundaries to enable our young pupils to make choices safely, through provision of a safe environment and an empowering education.
- Pupils are encouraged to know, understand and exercise their rights and personal freedoms and advised how to exercise these safely, for example through our E-Safety and PSHE lessons. Whether it is through choice of learning challenge, of how they record, of participation in our numerous extra-curricular clubs and opportunities, pupils are given the freedom to make choices for their own benefit.
- Opportunities for personalised learning are regularly explored with the pupils. At the end of each term teachers will plan the topic overview, with their class, for the term ahead, giving pupils freedom to express their personal interests and desires.
- Pupils have the freedom to express their opinion on the quality of teaching through termly pupil conferencing. They feel confident to tell teachers which teaching methods work best and which could be improved – they have even graded the quality if teaching!
- Through Circle Time and Critical Thinking lesson pupils learn that their behaviours have an effect on their own rights and those of others. Good manners are insisted upon at all times and we are proud of our pupils attitude in this area. Through these approaches we believe all members of our school community have a mutual respect for each other.
- Assembly themes will often revolve around the subject of respect, where children learn the importance of respecting the environment and each other. They will be challenged to think about the consequences when we don’t show due respect and what the benefits of being respectful can be.
Tolerance of those of different faith and beliefs
- Harrowbarrow is situated in an area which has limited cultural diversity; therefore we place a great emphasis on promoting diversity with the children. Assemblies are regularly planned to address this issue, either directly or through the inclusion of stories and celebrations from a variety of faiths and cultures.
- Our RE, PSHE and SMSC curriculum and learning opportunities reinforce tolerance. Children explore different faiths and beliefs and are encouraged to celebrate diversity.
- Each year we work with local faith teacher Daya, who has worked across the school to teach children about the Islamic and Sikh faiths.
- Last year we took our Y5/6 pupils to visit a mosque in Bristol for a workshop to learn about the Islamic faith.
- Y5/6 pupils have engaged in further multicultural learning through recent topics, which has led to workshops in both Brazilian and Caribbean restaurants over the last two years.