- The material taught in order to develop pupils' knowledge and understanding should become increasingly extensive and specialised as the pupil matures.
- A balanced curriculum provides the pupil with regular teaching across the full range of the curriculum. The main subjects should be taught on a regular basis.
- A flexible curriculum is able to meet the identified needs of individual learners within its framework.
- Pupils of all ages will have a range of experiences other than the formal subjects which they study.
- The curriculum provides children in the Foundation Stage (aged 3 –5) with a wide range of planned activities and experiences which help them to develop and make progress towards meeting the Early Learning Goals.
- Children in the Foundation Stage need a well-planned and resourced curriculum to take their learning forward and to provide opportunities for all children to succeed in an atmosphere of care and feeling valued. Children deepen their understanding by playing, talking, observing, planning, questioning, experimenting, testing, repeating, reflecting and responding to adults and to each other.
- The Early Learning Goals establish expectations for most children to reach by the end of the Foundation Stage.
The EYFS learning and development requirements comprise:
- The seven areas of learning and development and the educational programmes:
- communication and language
- physical development
- personal, social and emotional development
- understanding the world
- expressive arts and design
- The early learning goals, which summarise the knowledge, skills and understanding that all young children should have gained by the end of the Reception year
- The assessment requirements (when and how practitioners must assess children’s achievements, and when and how they should discuss children’s progress with parents and/or carers).
The curriculum will satisfy the requirements of legislation relating to the National Curriculum and religious education (RE), ensuring that sufficient time is allowed for all aspects of the basic curriculum and the development of essential skills especially literacy, numeracy and the use of Information and Communications Technology. These requirements will be realised through well planned and delivered teaching and through a thematic approach. As much practical learning as possible will be offered to children to enhance understanding of curriculum areas.
Children will be offered a very wide range of experiences to extend their understanding of themselves and the world in which they live. Skills, attitudes and values will be developed to prepare the children for the next stage of learning (‘Key Stage 2 ready’ and ‘Secondary ready’), and enable them to be successful in the community. The school would expect everyone to develop through a ‘consistency and warmth’ approach and show a sense of responsibility and self-discipline whether alone, together, at work or at play, and to support policies on equal opportunities. The school will not tolerate poor behaviour and will adopt positive behaviour management strategies to ensure that children are responding to positive, not negative models of social interactions.
Children and pupils at John Keats will learn most effectively when:
- Pupils receive clear structures which set out ways to learn effectively – hence the provision of an enquiry-based approach towards learning. In practice, this means that pupils will be involved with the development of the key question that frames the approach to their learning for the half term. Each topic begins with an innovative overarching ‘fertile’ theme that will entice the children into wanting to find out more.
- Given the opportunity to learn in an active way e.g. engaging in immersion days that stimulate an interest in the topic. An example of an immersion day is a day where the class prepares for and undertakes the trial, modelled on a formal process, of a slave owner to hear the arguments for and against slavery.
- Given clear feedback about their learning and how they are getting on in school. This will be done through a programme of marking and feedback that enables pupils to be clear about their strengths and areas for development.
- Given sufficient time to address their emotional and social needs – hence the focus on pastoral support and mentoring and a holistic approach towards inclusion. This will be seen in school through the work of the pastoral manager who will work intensively with families to help with problems such as housing, immigration, money, family issues and family literacy and numeracy. This will enable parents and carers to feel comfortable with the school and trust staff to work well with them and their families.
- Pupils will also receive intensive support in school through the work of the play therapist, speech therapist, learning mentor, inclusion manager, drama teacher, sports coaches etc. - all focused on the development of self-esteem, confidence and positive attitudes to learning.