Our 'CARE' Cultural Curriculum
Our CARE Ethos
At Christ the Sower School Ecumenical School we provide the ‘good earth’ for all our children to flourish, where every child can explore who they are created to be. Our Christian values ensure that all of our children grow to become the best they can be in a loving place where we all care, learn and grow together.Through our CARE Curriculum, we create regular, well-thought-out opportunities which encourage our children to make good choices, appreciate themselves, each other and the world in which they live, reflect on their learning experiences and events and engage with each other, their learning and opportunities.
Our Care Curriculum is designed so that it enables all children to CARE, learning and growing within our Christian community so that they are ready to make a positive contribution to the wider world and are fully prepared for the next stage of their education and development.
At Christ the Sower Ecumenical Primary School, we are highly aspirational for our children, and we aim to engender a sense of personal pride in achievement and provide a purpose and relevance for learning. Through our curriculum, we want pupils to move on to the next stage of their education with a strong sense of pride in themselves and a belief for their future so that they can go on to achieve their full potential
We provide our children with a wide, engaging and aspirational curriculum that is designed to ensure that all children are motivated to learn and become independent, confident, resourceful individuals who feel a sense of belonging to the school and community as well as ready to make a positive contribution to the wider world.
Whilst the National Curriculum forms the basis for our CARE curriculum, we have designed our curriculum carefully to ensure that that is built on an in depth knowledge and understanding of our pupils.
We understand the importance of building cultural capital, enabling our children to benefit from the best that has been said, thought and done in the wider world. Therefore, our curriculum is enriched by a range of visits, visitors and experiences, which our skilled teaching staff plan in to ensure that children can identify and apply curriculum links and concepts.
We firmly believe that a successful curriculum is underpinned by reading, Our curriculum has reading at its core, and carefully selected, challenging texts are used in lessons across the curriculum. This works to ensure that all of our children are equipped with the vocabulary, syntax and communication skills that they will need to access learning at a deeper and more meaningful level both now and in the future. Our curriculum carefully plans for the fundamental key skills in maths, reading, writing and spoken language to be revisited regularly, and therefore embedded over time, ensuring that knowledge and skills are transferable across contexts, disciplines and subjects. Most importantly of all, the sequencing of our curriculum also ensures that key knowledge will remain in children's long term memory to be built upon in the future.
Our Christian values and our CARE ethos drive the curriculum, and ensure that it is both challenging and coherently sequenced in order to enable all children to succeed. All content is carefully sequenced so that new knowledge and skills build on prior knowledge; thus ensuring that children know more, and remember more over time. We also ensure that all of our children develop learning behaviours including; resilience, growth mind-set, curiosity and independence. These skills ensure that our pupils believe that they can achieve their potential and this in turn encourages them to take greater responsibility for their own learning.
We know that self-belief can and will lead to personal success and our curriculum enables pupils to do that. Core British Values and SMSC run through our curriculum to ensure that pupils understand their rights and responsibilities, as well as the roles of law and democracy that they need in life now and in the future. Furthermore, as a culturally diverse school, our children are well equipped with the suitable knowledge, behaviours and attitudes that allow them to live harmoniously in a multi-cultural society.
Our Curriculum is implemented with our Curriculum Intent, Christian Values and CARE ethos at the heart of all we do at Christ the Sower Ecumenical Primary School. We deliver a coherently planned, ambitious curriculum with progressive development and understanding of key knowledge, skills and concepts, which build over time and are re-visited regularly.
Our curriculum design is based on evidence from principles of learning, on-going assessment and organisation and cognitive research. (EEF research, Cognitive Science, Psychological Science)
These main principles underpin this:
- Start from a learner’s existing understanding.
- Involve the learner actively in the learning process.
- Develop the learner’s overview, i.e. metacognition – this requires that students have a view of the big picture, understand what effective learning looks like, and can also self-assess. (EEF Metacognition and Self-regulation of learning).
- Emphasis the social aspects of learning (i.e. learning through discussion) as these make a unique contribution to learning. (EEF research Collaborative Learning).
- Curriculum organisation and timetabling enable learners’ opportunities for constant recapping of knowledge and skills with well-spaced reviews. (interleaving and addressing the forgetting curve).
Implementation Curriculum Overview
- Growth documents, overviews and clearly identified learning intentions and end points are produced for each year group ensuring clarity of coverage with a strong emphasis on progression of knowledge and skills.
- Carefully selected enrichment opportunities are key to providing all pupils with rich experiences to enhance their learning. These experiences are reviewed annually as part of our curriculum review.
- Monitoring takes place on a regular basis, and is supported in school by the Governing Body.
- Every curriculum area has a linked Governor who visits their subject leader regularly supports in deep dives and reports back to the LGB on the progress in that subject.
- Our curriculum is reviewed regularly (at least annually) by Governors, SLT, Subject leaders and teachers. This ensures that it remains relevant, ambitious and that all component parts are as logically sequenced and fit for purpose as possible.
- Developing an understanding of the fundamental British values infiltrates all aspects of the curriculum and assembly themes.
- We have also mapped out opportunities for SMSC and safeguarding throughout our curriculum, and these are available in a separate document.
Implementation of Teaching and Learning
- We have the highest of expectations for ALL learners.
- We do not differentiate by task, Teachers will aim the pitch high and challenge all to get there through scaffolding and support.
- Growth mindset, resilience and CARE underpin all learning, our children are taught how to learn and we celebrate success in this.
- Our curriculum is underpinned by the principle of ‘fewer things in greater depth’ and embedded in an understanding of how memory works. We know that children need to embed learning in their long-term memory, and that children need time to develop mastery of a concept or skill. Therefore, learning intentions may be extended over several lessons, and children supported to understand and apply their learning at a deeper level.
- As a school, we have developed 5 memory super hacks which support our pupils to know more and remember more over time. These are: retrieval, note-taking, chunking, scaffolding/modelling and big picture.
- Teachers begin all lessons by sharing the big picture with pupils, which includes sharing end points and links to previous and future learning.
- Teachers have excellent subject knowledge and are supported to maintain and improve this knowledge through training, observing best practice and undertaking relevant research
- The teaching of key vocabulary is a primary feature in all curriculum areas, with explicit instruction, modelling, scaffolding, pre-teaching and an expectation that it is used in spoken and written outcomes.
- Subject leaders provide colleagues with support for planning, resourcing and teaching
- Lessons incorporate modelled examples; scaffolding, key vocabulary, retrieval practice and, over time, revisit teaching, knowledge and skills
- Pupils are taught note taking skills to support the working memory, and shown how to use these notes to support learning as they apply learning later in a unit of work.
- Materials within lessons are broken down into manageable ‘chunks’ to ensure that learning is easier to access and retain in the working memory.
- Lesson materials are chosen to add value to pupils’ learning, and wherever possible, teachers go back to the highest quality source material for a curriculum subject.
- High quality texts are used across the curriculum, to ensure that children are exposed to a wide range of vocabulary and syntax styles, this will include high quality fiction, non-fiction, poetry and academic texts.
- Leaders ensure that teaching is sequential with teachers ensuring that knowledge and skills are taught in a logical and progressive order.
- A High challenge; low threat approach is used at all times, and in all lessons with teachers aiming high, checking understanding in a low threat way and then applying responsive teaching to impact learning and address misconceptions.
- Challenge for all underpins every aspect of the curriculum, with extension tasks always available and an expectation that all children will be challenged to achieve their potential.
- Opportunities for enrichment are logically and strategically placed in the curriculum in order to ensure that they add the greatest amount of value to the children’s learning.
- Target Tracker is used for the assessment of pupils’ learning for all areas of the curriculum.
Leaders monitor the curriculum on a regular basis, which is planned out for each school term. This enables leaders to have a good understanding of the impact of the curriculum on children’s learning and achievement. Middle leaders conduct learning walks, planning and book/work scrutinies so that they can track the progress of learning over time, identify and support or identify training needs and share good practice with other staff. Senior leaders support middle leaders in their roles as well as strategically manage the whole CtS Cultural Curriculum. Members of the local governing body visit the school regularly and have a good understanding of our Cultural Curriculum and what that looks like in daily implementation.
Teachers are assessing for learning on a daily basis and we have termly formal assessment points. We assess the children in Reading, Writing and Maths by using a range of assessment material including previous SATs papers, phonic screening checks, NFER Reading Comprehension papers, Power Maths assessments and National annual assessments. We use Target Tracker to monitor our assessments across the year for all year groups and end of key stages. Non-core subjects are assessed against the Growth in Knowledge and Skills documents.
We review our Curriculum each year to ensure it is meeting the needs of our children, with books and resources being updated when necessary.
The impact of our CtS CARE Curriculum is that children leave our school and move onto their secondary school with the basic skills, love of learning and sense of ambition. They are able to make good choices, appreciate themselves, others and the world in which they live, reflect on their learning experiences and events and engage with each other, their learning and opportunities.
We know this because we are able to watch the children’s growth in learning and how they are able to build positive CAREing relationships. We also receive positive feedback from parents, children and their feeder secondary school.
This is all part of our School journey to good and beyond!