Waterbeach Community Primary School is required to follow the new National Curriculum which came into force in September 2014. This gave us an opportunity to review our existing curriculum and turn it into learning that meets the needs of 21st Century education.
Our vision is Learning Laughter Friendship and this philosophy threads through all aspects of what we do as a school.
We organise whole school themes over a two year rolling programme (please see below). Within each theme, teachers not only plan topics which address the statutory requirements outlined by the DfE but work with children to find out what they would like to learn. This gives the children an opportunity to take some control of their learning. Our school has an all-inclusive approach and ensures that all children are given work at an appropriate level. We develop steps to success for children who face significant difficulties and enhance learning for the more able children through support, challenge and refection. We want to foster a love of learning in all our children.
English and maths are taught in line with the requirements of the national curriculum and wherever possible are aligned to the theme of the topic. In Reception and Key Stage 1 phonics is delivered by using Letters and Sounds and Jolly Phonics combined. Our reading scheme comprises of books from a wide variety of schemes.
Lessons are focused around learning questions and aim to develop every child’s understanding and knowledge at his/ her appropriate level in order to maximise learning. Teachers use a variety of teaching strategies and resources in order to achieve this.
In addition, we teach our children the fundamental British values, tolerance, respect for all faiths and appreciation of other cultures and lifestyles through dedicated RE mini topics and a comprehensive PSHCE scheme. Our behaviour policy focuses on six clear “Golden Rules” which embody important values and reward positive behaviour throughout the children’s time at this school.
Children are given chance to reflect on learning through our marking and feedback policy and by talking to each other as part of our “Talk for Learning” work. This is further enhanced by class assemblies which give the children the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learnt to their parents.
Teaching the children to use focused and in depth questioning is a very significant part of our approach to learning. By using the Bloom’s Taxonomy we ensure that our children have learning opportunities which are meaningful and interactive. By answering the learning questions posed by the class teacher, children are able to assess and reflect on what they have learnt during each lesson. They are also taught to extend their own learning through more analytical and evaluative questioning techniques.