St. Mary’s Ambitious Curriculum
What makes St. Mary's different?
At St. Mary's Church of England Primary School the Headteacher is resolute on three things:
- Every child deserves a curriculum that will inspire, motivate and enable them to achieve their full potential;
- All learning is underpinned by experiential learning opportunities that should bring alive the curriculum;
- Every lesson we teach or concept we deliver must be founded in skill or knowledge acquisition, delivered sequentially and connected to prior knowledge to help build pupils' understanding.
Our curriculum does not:
- Teach random or disconnected facts that lead to cumulative dysfluency.
- Favour or focus teaching on skill development over knowledge acquisition.
- Attempt to compartmentalise concepts into standalone components of learning - we connect the curriculum through subjects.
We ensure that:
- Through using the curriculum as a driver - we are able to connect pupils' learning to the City of Southampton and their immediate surroundings.
- The curriculum builds schema over time and through different subject areas to help pupils commit knowledge to long-term memory. For example: Y6 learning about the Inca Civilisation in History, also study South America in Geography and the Art of Latin America.
What is your child learning this term?
Our curriculum was researched, curated and developed by Lion Pathways - a collective of London schools that our current Headteacher previously led and helped to develop. Because of this, curriculum leadership is strong - with a focus on developing the subject knowledge of staff to help them impart the exciting knowledge and skills we have chosen for our children to learn.
Our PE and Music curriculum is bespoke to the school but led by subject specialists who deepen our pupils' knowledge and skills through practical application within these subjects. Specialists work alongside the Senior Team to ensure that the same pathway journey is carved from EYFS through to Year 6.
Our Head and Deputy Headteacher lead the curriculum. Any modification, deviation or innovation to the planned curriculum must be agreed in consultation with them.
COVID-19 and the curriculum
Undoubtedly COVID-19 has impacted the learning of all pupils at St. Mary's. Many children (particularly our youngest and most disadvantaged) have regressed from their previous starting points. Gaps in learning now exist. The Headteacher and Governing Body have carefully considered the approach to mitigating these deficits, and the following plan of action has been in place since Spring 2022:
|Plan of action:||Intended impact:|
To support pupils to make rapid improvements in learning - streaming by ability ensures that teachers can 'teach to need'
Targeting the bottom 20% through the very best quality first teaching the school offers.
We cannot afford for pupils to take 'steps back' in their learning. We need to ensure that they continue to meet the challenge of our curriculum whilst plugging gaps that exist quickly and carefully.
All teachers are being supported to adapt planning to incorporate 'misconception' and 'gap' teaching - this is highlighted clearly for leaders to monitor.
Our earliest readers benefit from a new phonics curriculum - Little Wandle Letters and Sounds (see Early Reading section). This comprehensive package combines assessment, therapy and catch-up to ensure robust improvement in reading.
Every child reads every day! In Guided Reading sessions pupils are immersed in carefully chosen texts that sit above their collective chronological reading age.
We reward regular readers - book tokens, bookmarks and winning their own books.
|Homework and home learning projects sit as part of the curriculum offer - they are not a bolt-on. Teachers provide homework that teaches to need rather than generic coverage.|
A curriculum for EVERY child - Supporting SEND & EAL
Experiential Learning - Trips and Visits & Cultural Capital
From September 2022, every child at St. Mary's will experience trips and visits that will bring alive the curriculum being studied. It is only through this experiential learning that pupils will embed their understanding of concepts, ideas and events.
This is an ambitious trips and visits schedule, but one we know will support our children on their journey to know more, remember more and achieve more!
|National Trip||Local Field Trip||Theatre Visit|
Longdown Activity Farm
MAST - Mayflower Studios
The Houses of Parliament (London)
Southampton Art Gallery
Hobgoblin Theatre Company
London Zoo (London)
History Off The Page - Ancient Egypt
Hampton Court Palace (London)
Southampton Art Gallery - Greek Mythology
Sky Blue Theatre
Monument & Guildhall Art Gallery (London)
Winchester Science Centre - Sound & Living Things
The British Museum (London)
Hobgoblin Theatre Company
The Natural History Museum (London)
Southampton City Walls
Young Shakespeare Company