At Our Lady of Grace Catholic Infant School we follow our Mission Statement: “We are Learning to grow and love like Jesus.”. Through our curriculum, we strive to develop the skills, knowledge and learning attitudes of our pupils so that they may become the best that they can be. Our Catholic values help children to develop their social and moral code, as they build their sense of uniqueness and self-worth as an individual. We also recognise that parents are the primary educators of the faith and we work closely with our parish and our local community in embedding these strong links . We aim to foster an ethos of serving both individuals and society.
Our curriculum aims to:
- Enable pupils to develop knowledge, understand concepts and acquire skills and be able to choose and apply these in relevant situations, providing enrichment opportunities
- Support learners to use prior knowledge, conceptual understanding to deepen their knowledge and understanding and make links in their learning
- Support pupils’ social, moral, spiritual and cultural development to enable them to become global citizens of the 21st Century, embracing all that mutli-cultural Britian has to offer them
- Enrich vocabulary and comprehension of subject-specific language to enable them to articulate their learning that builds on their home experiences and backgrounds
- Promote a positive attitude to learning within a secure and and stimulating environment that promotes independence, self-esteem and health and wellbeing
- Ensure progression across year groups and phases with high expectations for all groups of pupils and appropriate levels of challenge and support
The Catholic ethos of our school and British Values underpins our curriculum and supports children to develop personal skills and ways of thinking, feeling and acting to become global citizens with a strong moral and cultural identity.
When planning a curriculum, Our Lady of Grace Catholic Infant has had to recognise the very wide social and economic backgrounds of our families. We recognise R.E as a core subject, so we adhere to a Diocesan-wide curriculum and follow ‘Dr. Margaret Carswell’s RE Framework’.
Our learning experiences take full advantage of our local area and builds on children’s home experiences and interests and real questions they want to ask, as well as supporting families to access facilities that support learning.
Our topics are based on the creative curriculum of ‘Cornerstones’. Learning is sequenced through the four stages of engage, develop, innovate and express. This approach supports children who are at different starting points from which children can develop their learning, building on what they can already do, their existing knowledge and interests. Cornerstones is inline with the National Curriculum 2014 which consists of the core subjects of English, Maths and Science together with the foundation subjects and RE.
Classroom environments are appropriate, stimulating and purposeful and include opportunities for indoor and outdoor learning.
Teachers provide children with opportunities to express their ideas, using the language of thinking and learning, using possibility questions like “I remember when…” “I tried this but…” “We found out that…” “We solved the problem by…” “We know…” “I can…” “We thought…” successfully avoiding answers like “I don’t know.”
Opportunities are provided for children to reflect on their experiences and talk about their learning, accepting constructive criticism and suggestions from children and adults.
We use a range of strategies to promote high expectations, combine transferable skills, demonstrate a breadth of vocabulary and develop strong cross-curricular links. These include knowledge organisers, POP quiz and KWL charts.
Children are able to talk positively about their learning behaviours through the language of our learning mascots.
Parents play an important role in their children’s learning and work in partnership to support and review current topics and upcoming learning through knowledge organisers, home learning challenges and end of topic celebrations.
Being able to read is the most important skill a student will learn. Reading has far reaching implications for lifelong confidence and wellbeing. We are aware that learning to read is challenging for some of our students.
Read, Write Inc. is a synthetic phonic program that provides a systematic approach to teaching reading, writing and spelling. Read, Write Inc. is fully compatible with the broad and rich curriculum available at Our Lady of Grace Infant School.
Read, Write Inc. gives us:
- Systematic, structured teaching
- Using simultaneous visual, auditory and kinaesthetic processes
- Clear importance of speaking and listening
- Encouragement of collaborative working
- Clear role for parents/carers
The outcomes of the curriculum are measured by the attainment and progress made by the children. Put simply - how much the children know and remember including whether or not the children have mastered a particular skill. Teachers continually use assessment of the children’s responses and the work they produce to measure impact. Subject leaders play an important part in the success of the curriculum by leading a regular programme of monitoring, evaluation and review. This includes book scrutinies, learning walks and lesson observations to measure the impact of teaching and learning. The SLT use data from all areas to make comparisons across groups, and within groups as well as keeping track of children’s progress and attainment from point to point to see they are keeping on track. We also use pupil interviews to gauge children’s engagement and enjoyment of the curriculum. Staff complete a topic review at the end of each topic and this is used to inform future planning and improve teaching and learning. Teachers and leaders also have the school’s curriculum assessment data to support judgements on the impact our curriculum is having.
The leadership team in consultation with staff and children regularly review and renew the school curriculum to ensure all elements are fit for purpose.