A new Ofsted inspection framework was implemented from September 2019.
Ofsted have stated that it is their aim that:
“The new framework places much more emphasis than the current one on the substance of education: the curriculum.”
At Heptonstall J, I and N school, our children are individuals and our rich and motivational curriculum starts with them. We intend to prepare them for life by developing within them the values of curiosity, bravery, determination, responsibility, flexibility of thought and respect for the opinions and beliefs of others.
Our curriculum will inspire, enthuse and educate our children so they build knowledge and skills that will help them prepare for life in Modern Britain and beyond.
Teachers have high aspirations for all children to achieve, regardless of differences in ability, social background, culture, race, gender or disability and this is reflected in fun, engaging learning experiences and our extra school life. All elements of the National Curriculum are built sequentially and cumulatively for our children in their time at Heptonstall School. The content of the curriculum encourages them to follow their own interests and to enthuse and inspire them to be inquisitive learners with real life skills that enable them to move into the world with a passion for lifelong learning.
The school promotes musical, sporting and artistic opportunities together with academic achievement so that all children leave Heptonstall School having found success and confidence in their own well-being, social, emotional, physical and spiritual needs.
Our Curriculum has a two year cycle to accommodate the two years that children spend in each class. The topics will be under broad half termly themes and then split into various areas such as History/Geography/Science etc.
You can find the new Topic Cycles for Classes 2, 3 and 4 for the rest of this academic year AND the academic year 2020-2021 below.
Children in Class 1 follow the Early Years and Foundation Stage Curriculum. You can also find their topic cycles below.
*2020/2021 cycles will be uploaded shortly*
The subjects of our curriculum are taught as follows:
We follow the National Curriculum, supplemented by The Power of Reading, to plan units of work for all children in Years 1 – 6. These units will cover aspects of reading and writing, both narrative, non narrative and poetry texts. There are also opportunities planned for cross curricular writing which links to topic work. Where appropriate English work is linked to our topic work. Some English work, for example, Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar (SPaG) may not be linked and will be taught independently. All planning is in line with current government legislation.
On going work is assessed by teachers, half termly, using our internal tracking and assessment system and children’s next steps in learning are planned for. Year 2 and Year 6 also use National Tests as assessments.
Cursive handwriting is taught and encouraged to be used when doing any kind of writing.
Key Stage 1 uses the Letters and Sounds phonic scheme. We use Oxford Reading Tree, as our reading scheme, in both Key Stages but also supplement this with other reading scheme books such as Super Phonics and Project X. Children are also encouraged to read wider by accessing free choice books from the school library.
Support materials and programmes are used in each class, as needed, for any children who may need additional support.
Progress is reported annually to parents.
The school follows the 2014 National Curriculum and implements the curriculum by following The White Rose Hub’s support and advice. The White Rose Maths Hub is based at Holy Trinity Secondary School and provides support in planning, assessing and resourcing for a mastery approach to teaching mathematics. We follow a small steps approach to the delivery of maths and spend longer on blocks of work to ensure children develop a deeper understanding of the mathematics they have been learning.
In Early Years and Foundation Stage, the programme of study is set out in the Early Years and Foundation Stage framework. Maths, in this area, is mainly delivered through play and gives children opportunities to use real-life maths. There are occasions where maths may be taught as a discrete subject. Assessment is ongoing and is assessed based on observations and evidence.
In Key Stage 1 Maths is, in the main, delivered as a discrete subject but will also be taught creatively within topic work to allow children to develop and use their knowledge, skills and understanding across a range on situations. Assessment is on-going and teachers will often make judgements on a daily basis which will influence their planning. There is, at the end of each term, a formal assessment which is used to track the progression of individuals or groups of children. Also the Year 2 children have to take part in the Key Stage 1 SAT’s, the results of which being reported to parents at the end of the academic year. These assessments are also used to set targets for children before entering Key Stage 2.
Key Stage 2 follows the same principals as in Key Stage 1 with a similar format for assessments; children sit a more formal test, SAT’s, in May. These are marked externally and results are made available for the school in June and published for public viewing. These results are used to make judgements of the schools performance and compares like for like schools.
We follow the National Curriculum Programmes of Study with modules being spread throughout our 2 year cycle. Children will study topics during Class 2, Class 3, and Class 4. We try to spread the topics evenly through the year. We understand the importance of scientific procedures, research and investigation and do as much practical work as possible to develop scientific skills and thinking as well as knowledge.
Assessment in science is through teacher observation during lessons and the marking of written work. In Class 3 and Class 4 there may also be a more formal test at the end of a topic.
We report on the progress/achievements at parents’ evenings and more formally in our end of year written School Report.
The 2014 National Curriculum aims for computing are to ensure all pupils can understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, can analyse problems in computational terms, can evaluate and apply information technology and are responsible, competent, confident and creative users of information and communication technology.
At Heptonstall we follow the Smithills Scheme of Work over a two-year rolling programme. Each module is designed to build on the children’s previous learning and to challenge and ensure progression to the next level. Assessment is continuous throughout the programme and is carried out by both staff and the children through self-evaluation. Children each have their own individual file and all work is stored in that file.
History is taught as part of our topic work with links to other subjects as appropriate. History is planned using the National Curriculum programmes of study, and with regard to the purposes and aims of these programmes.
In Key Stage 1 history work involves developing a sense of time and using vocabulary connected to this. There is an emphasis on recent history and changes within living memory, e.g. the lives of grandparents, which can be easily related to. Other topics include significant world events or the study of famous individuals. As well as learning facts the children also begin to compare and evaluate historical sources.
These skills are further developed in Key Stage 2 where the children develop questioning skills and make comparisons between historical events. They study topics which will give them a chronologically secure knowledge and understanding of aspects of local, British and world history. Assessment in history is through teacher observation during lessons and the marking of written work.
We report on the progress/achievements at parents’ evenings and more formally in our end of year written School Report.
Geography is taught as part of our topic work with links to other subjects as appropriate. Geography is planned using the National Curriculum programmes of study, and with regard to the purposes and aims of these programmes. We aim to equip pupils with knowledge about diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with an understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes.
Work throughout Key Stages 1 and 2 covers the four areas geography which are locational knowledge, place knowledge, human and physical geography and geographical skills and fieldwork. Assessment in geography is through teacher observation during lessons and the marking of written work. We report on the progress/achievements at parents’ evenings and more formally in our end of year written School Report.
The school organises PE by providing a framework in which six areas are covered evenly throughout the two Key Stages. This incorporates units of work in each area. Planning includes details of the area to be covered including lesson plans, based on current legislation, core tasks and Val Sabin schemes of work. The hall is timetabled so that each class has two booked sessions per week. There are frequent visits from external organisations, which allows the children to further develop both their skills and interest in specific sports.
Outside the formal curriculum teachers and parents give generously of their time to enable children to participate in school sports clubs both during school time and after school. This also provides opportunity to take part in various sporting tournaments and matches after school. Teachers will assess pupils on a constant basis through observations. Progress is reported annually to parents.
In Key Stage 1, children will develop fundamental movement skills, balance and coordination, both individually and with others. They should be able to engage in competitive and co-operative activities, in a range of situations.
In Key Stage 2, children will continue to apply and develop a broader range of skills. They will enjoy communicating, collaborating and competing with each other. They will also develop an understanding of how to improve in sports.
Swimming activities and water safety are covered in Key Stage 2 during Year 3 and 4, where the children attend swimming lessons at a local swimming pool for one term per school year.
Throughout Key Stage 1 the children are involved in a wide variety of Art based topics. Examples of topics may be drawing, painting, or collage or sculpture. During Key Stage 2 children continue to work on a variety of practical art skills alongside focus topics on individual artists. Examples of topics covered in Key Stage 2 may include Van Gogh, Lowry and Still Life. The Creative Curriculum allows for art based activities to be included in other subject areas and topics.
The Art curriculum is planned based on National Guidelines. Progress is assessed by continuous teacher based assessment throughout any practical work.
Design and Technology
Throughout Key Stage 1 the children experience a number of Design Technology topics, due to the creative nature of the subject these topics are often incorporated with Art topics.
During Key Stage 2 children continue to work on a variety of practical Design Technology skills, which include researching, planning, making and evaluating. The Creative Curriculum allows for Design Technology based activities to be included in other subject areas and topics such as Art and Science.
Cooking activities are also planned, which can link to topics or events and festivals, depending on the time year.
The Design and Technology curriculum is planned based on National Guidelines. Progress is assessed by continuous teacher based assessment.
French is not taught as a discrete subject in Key Stage 1. However, language activities are introduced to the children on an ad hoc basis through themed activities and topics. For example during our yearly celebration of the European Day of Languages in September.
The 2014 National Curriculum states that the teaching of a foreign language is compulsory in Key Stage 2. It aims to ensure that all pupils can understand and respond to the spoken and written foreign language, can speak with increasing confidence and can write at varying length.
At Heptonstall School, Years 3 and 4 are taught for 30 minutes a week and Years 5 and 6 for 40 minutes a week; both by the language specialist. Lessons plans are based on the LCP New Generation Primary French Scheme of Work which is supplemented with additional resources from the internet, Entre dans la ronde and 100+ Fun Idea for Practising Modern Foreign Languages in the Primary Classroom.
Children are taught topics such as “All about Me”, “Tell me a story”, “What is the weather like?” in Class 3 to “Healthy Eating”, “The Planets” and “On the way to school” at Class 4. Themes within the topics are frequently revisited to reinforce and consolidate vocabulary as well as increase confidence and competence in speaking the language. The vast majority of lessons are oral and aural, with more emphasis on writing in Class 4.
Currently methods of assessment are continuous and informal.
Heptonstall Junior, Infant and Nursery School is required by the 1988 Education Act to provide religious education for all pupils as part of their basic curriculum. The current RE syllabus has been in effective since autumn 2014 and this is the statutory curriculum for RE in Calderdale and Kirklees. The curriculum has three broad aims; to know about and understand a range of religions and worldviews, to express ideas and insights about questions of belief and meaning and to investigate and respond to important questions for individuals and the wider community.
At present RE is taught through half termly whole school RE days.
Key Stage 1 focuses on two religions: Christianity and Islam. Examples of the topics of study are:
Special books and stories, Celebrating special occasions, How do people pray? and How do Christians and Muslims celebrate new life? The teacher assesses each child at the end of each unit. Statutory reporting to parents is required at the end of Year two based on whether the child is working above, below or at the expected level.
Key Stage 2 focuses on four religions: Christianity, Islam, Judaism and Sikhism. Examples of the topics of study are:
Class 3 : What creation stories tell us about our world, What do Christians believe about a good life? Who can inspire us? and What words of wisdom guide us?
Class 4: Why are some journeys and places special? Should we forgive others? What does it mean to be a Sikh? and What is important to Christians?
Again, the teacher assesses each child at the end of every unit however, statutory reporting to parents is required at the end of Year 6 based on whether the child is working above, below or at the expected level.
The locally agreed syllabus is currently under review and an updated version will be introduced in September 2019.
The Early Years curriculum is split into seven areas. These are:
• Personal and social and emotional development
• Communication and language
• Physical development
• Understanding the world
• Expressive arts and design
We use ‘Development Matters’ to plan the children’s learning. This describes expected development from birth to 60 months. The children learn from a combination of adult led activities and child centred play. These are planned using our knowledge of the children. Assessment is on-going. Adults observe the children during activities and play.
We split the year into around 6 topics which usually last for a half term, those towards the end of the year are child initiated so we can teach the children through their specific interests. Some of the topics include a broad range of interests and such as traditional tales, ourselves, people who help us, dinosaurs, journeys, the seasons, cold lands, and jungles.
The following Curriculum Polices have all been revised and adapted (where appropriate) to ensure they are in line with our new Curriculum.