Our Curriculum Statement
Reading will always be at the heart of our curriculum. We believe that learning to read is a magical experience. It opens the doors to endless possibilities and life long learning. For us, reading well, and for pleasure, is the foundation for learning and allowing every child, from all starting points, the opportunities to succeed and love learning. Additionally, we believe music combines the development of ideas and concepts, through to exploration and education of feeling, thus helping to educate the ‘whole’ child emotionally, spiritually, intellectually and socially. At Spring Vale, we believe every child should have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument whilst at primary school. We are also passionate about children leading healthy lifestyles, being proud of their background, culture, school and city. Our curriculum is focused on children and ensuring they leave Spring Vale with skills to equip them for their future.
At Spring Vale Primary, we firmly believe that reading should be fun and not a chore. Children have lots of opportunities to read in school throughout the day. There are books, magazines, children’s newspapers, comics and online reading texts available in class, the library and on the playground during break times. We encourage pupils to read at home every day and ask parents to sign their reading record to say that they have heard their child read. We teach phonics through the Letters and Sounds phonics scheme. This is taught in small groups, 3 times a week, in Foundation, Key Stage One and Key Stage Two (where appropriate).
In addition to this, we believe in giving children the opportunity to create high quality writing, through reading, skills practise, drafting and editing. We use a range of stimuli from Classic Texts, such as Treasure Island, visual literacy and cross curricular links to inspire our children. Vocabulary remains a key driver in the teaching of writing, exposing children to a language-rich curriculum from our Foundation Stage.
The mathematics curriculum at Spring Vale has been designed to be ambitious in expectations of all learners with an emphasis on reasoning and applying mathematics to create life long mathematicians. Children are taught skills and then complete challenges to apply their learning in each lesson followed by a ‘One last Challenge…’ to stretch learners at the end of each session and encourage children to challenge their own thinking. Practical and context-based resources allow children to make links between their learning and the world around them. We believe times tables are the key to unlocking mathematical ability. In Key Stage 2, children can earn badges to celebrate their achievements in this area of maths.
At Spring Vale Primary School we value Science because it makes an increasingly important contribution of all aspects of life. All children are naturally curious about their environment and Science makes an invaluable contribution to their knowledge and understanding of the world. Science is a body of knowledge built up through experimental testing of ideas. Science is also methodology, a practical way of finding reliable answers to questions we may ask about the world around us. Science in our school is about developing children’s ideas and ways of working that enable them to make sense of the world in which they live through investigation, as well as using and applying process skills.
We believe that a broad and balanced science education is the entitlement of all children, regardless of ethnic origin, gender, class, aptitude or disability.
At Spring Vale Primary School we believe that computing should permeate the curriculum, allowing our children to learn how they want, when they want and where they want. We believe that computing should be a tool for learning. Effective computing, coupled with well trained, competent and enthusiastic staff, allows our children to develop the necessary computing skills needed for lifelong learning in the 21st Century.
Computing comprises of three strands, which will be delivered to ensure a balanced curriculum:
Computer science - the study of the foundational principles and practices of computation and computational thinking, and their application in the design and development of computer systems
IT - the creative and productive use and application of computer systems, hardware and software
Digital Literacy - the ability of learners to use, express themselves and develop their ideas through information and communication technology with regard to safeguarding and online etiquette.
Within our teaching of History we aim to help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. It will aspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past and equip pupils to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement. History helps pupils to understand the complexity of people’s lives, the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups, as well as their own identity and the challenges of their time. The aim of Geography teaching at Spring Vale is to stimulate children’s interest and understanding of places and environments. Through their work in Geography, children learn about their local area and compare their life in this area with that in other regions in the United Kingdom and in the rest of the world. They learn how to draw and interpret maps and they develop the skills of research, investigation, analysis and problem-solving. Through their growing knowledge and understanding of human geography, children gain an appreciation of life in other cultures. Geography teaching also motivates children to find out about the physical world and enables them to recognize the importance of sustainable development for the future of mankind.
In Key Stage 2, all children will be taught French as a Modern Foreign Language. We believe that starting early allows for more time for language learning overall and a sustained experience with the potential to lead to higher levels of proficiency at the end of secondary school. In an increasingly globalized world, intercultural understanding is essential, and that it is important to awaken children’s interests in other people and cultures at a time when they are open and receptive.
RE has a mission for tolerance and respect for all, in the community of the different. Spring Vale is a community of different nationalities, cultures and faith groups. We celebrate our diversity and offer a welcoming environment for all of our pupils “whatever their gender, race, ethnicity or ability” RE is a subject the celebrate s diversity and provides an opportunity to celebrate and foster an awareness of our differences in our school and in the wider world. By exploring issues within and across faiths we believe that pupils will learn to understand and respect faiths other than their own and will develop respect for other religions, beliefs, values and traditions. Through quality teaching children will be taught a broad and authentic understanding of other faiths. They will be encouraged to think and explore, express and explain their own ideas, enabling them to make reasoned and informed judgements on religious , moral and social issues. By developing their sense of identity and belonging children will be better prepared for a life in a multicultural society.
Music and The Arts
Art is a powerful and very individual communication tool for our pupils. Art combines the development of ideas and concepts, through to exploration and education of feeling, thus helping to educate the ‘whole’ child. Due to the nature of the ‘arts’ and its diversity there is no right or wrong way to create a piece of art or music. Therefore pupils at Spring Vale can gain confidence and a feeling of achievement from whatever the end result may be. We want all our pupils to experience a wide and varied Art Curriculum, which leaves them artistically curious. Alongside this, we believe every child should have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument whilst at primary school. All of our Year 4 children have this opportunity, followed by brass lessons throughout Key Stage 2.
At Spring Vale, children are taught about the importance of mental and physical health, including self-esteem and body image. We believe it is crucial to build effective citizens through teaching about positive relationships, keeping safe, behavioural norms and setting aspirational goals. Each half term, pupils in each year group are also given an ‘In the News…’ lesson, focusing on key events and issues from the world they live in. We believe giving children these learning opportunities sets them up for further learning in the future.
Sports and PE play a crucial role in our curriculum at Spring Vale. Each child has access to Dance, Gymnastics and Competitive Sports on a weekly basis. In addition to this, children also have the opportunity to attend lunchtime and after school clubs. In addition to promoting healthy lifestyles for our children, PE promotes opportunities for children to be creative, cooperative and competitive and to face up to different challenges both as individuals and in groups. Children learn to develop the notion of fair play, honest competition, good sportsmanship and dealing with both success and defeat.
If you would like to know more about our curriculum please contact us.