St Mary's Curriculum Intent
What are our curriculum intentions?
Our aim is for every child to reach their potential as a unique, well-rounded individual and as a valuable citizen in our local, national and global community based on a Catholic Education that firmly places Christ at the centre of all aspects of school life. We need to ensure that every child, no matter from what background they they’re from, are fully prepared for the next stage of their education. It is essential that the children in our school have excellent communication skills and this is a key feature of our curriculum. We ensure that our pupils are fully prepared to thrive in the different curriculums offered by our various feeder schools in the area. In Boston, children have a choice of schools through a selective system. Currently 90% (2018) of our children moved onto a Grammar school.
We deliver The National Curriculum (2014) for all children and as a Catholic School our RE curriculum is at the heart of what we do here at St Mary’s and addresses wellbeing beyond the National Curriculum. Finally, PE is of vital importance to our children. Here they can access a variety of experiences and learn new skills which will support them in growing into healthy, resilient young individuals that can make informed lifestyle choices.
RELIGIOUS EDUCATION & COLLECTIVE WORSHIP
Our RE Curriculum in line with other Diocesan vision and along with all schools in the Nottingham Diocese is delivered through the ‘Come and See’ Curriculum.
1. A Religious Education is provided at Saint Mary’s School according to the teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.
2. Saint Mary’s School provides a daily act of worship in Whole School Monthly Prayer times, daily Classroom Prayer times and within weekly Assemblies.
3. Parents have a right to withdraw children from Religious Education and Collective worship but in Saint Mary’s Catholic School there is no provision for alternative R.E. and collective worship.
In St Mary's School, education regarding sexual teaching, is based on the ‘Life life to the Full’ as provided by Ten Ten and approved by the Nottingham Diocese. As a Catholic school, our mission is to support the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of all of our pupils, rooted in the wisdom and teaching of the Church. The education of children in human sexuality is an important, precious and privileged responsibility.
It follows a three-stage structure which is repeated across three different learning stages: Within each learning stage, there are three modules which are based on the Model Catholic RSE Curriculum:
- Created and Loved by God
- Created to Love Others
- Created to Live in Community
These modules are then broken down into units of work:
Created and Loved by God
Me, My Body, My Health
Created to Love Others
Created to Live in Community
Living in the Wider World
Parents will be invited to view materials on Ten Ten before the modules are taught to the children and to discuss any concerns they may have.
The School Nursing Team also gives a short talk to the above pupils under the direction of the Headteacher. The children are given opportunity to ask questions, which will be answered, appropriate to their level of maturity.
Health Education covers many areas of safety, hygiene and developing a good self-image. The assistance of our School Nurse is used for parents and pupils. You can contact the School Nursing Team via the School Office, by appointment, to talk to parents or pupils.
The teachers also use selected materials to support their teaching and nurturing of self-esteem and character building and to give limited but necessary education about drugs. Specific sex and drug education is only given to Year 6 in the Summer Term before their transfer to the secondary school. Parents are informed when the lessons are to take place and are advised of their legal right to withdraw their child.
We also use the new PSHE Matters programme. Personal, Social, and Health Education (PSHE) is central to giving pupils the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to lead confident, healthy, independent lives and to become informed, active and responsible British citizens.
PSHE enables students to understand and respect our common humanity: it's diversity and it's differences so that they can go on to form, the effective, fulfilling relationships that are an essential part of life and learning. Safeguarding is a key element of PSHE as pupils learn about their own identity, risks, decision-making and how to keep themselves safe.
We believe that for our children the National Curriculum should be delivered creatively and through a broad and balanced values-based curriculum, combining the acquisition of knowledge with the development of key skills. We use the Cornerstones Curriculum, a nationally recognised approach for delivering outstanding learning opportunities for children.
This ensures that:
- Children gain understanding of and respect for religious and moral values and appreciation and tolerance of other groups, races, religions and ways of life and points of view.
- Prior learning is recognised and built upon
- All progress and personal achievements are celebrated.
- Clear progression of key skills in each subject area based around the 4Cs: communication, collaboration, creativity and critical thinking.
- The Curriculum is adapted to be accessible yet challenging for all learners.
- Our curriculum enables us to identify any gaps in key knowledge or skills in order implement intervention work carried out and reviewed regularly.
- To help children develop lively enquiring minds, the confidence to question, and the ability to debate rationally.
- To promote a positive attitude towards learning, so that children enjoy coming to school helping them to receive challenging, stimulating, worthwhile and enjoyable experiences which, will lead them into a love of lifelong learning.
- To teach children the basic skills of literacy, numeracy and computing.
- To help children gain understanding of and respect for religious and moral values. They are taught to appreciate and show tolerance of other groups, races, religions, ways of life and points of view.
- To help children to develop a concern for the quality of their immediate environment and to understand the world in which they live.
- To help children develop an awareness and appreciation of human achievements and aspirations.
- To help children, through diligence, commitment and self-discipline achieve the highest standards of which they are capable.
- To help pupils in the development of their own individuality and independence, enabling them to discover and recognise their own strengths.
- To enable children to be creative and develop their own thinking.
- To teach children about their developing world, including how their environment and society have changed over time.
- To help children understand Britain’s cultural heritage and enable children to be positive citizens in society.
- To fulfil all the requirements of the National Curriculum and the Diocese Syllabus for Religious Education
- To teach children to have an awareness of their own spiritual development and to understand right from wrong.
- To help children understand the importance of truth and fairness, so that they grow up committed to equal opportunities for all.
- To enable children to have respect for themselves and have a high self-esteem, and to be able to live and work co-operatively with others.
Our creative, project based curriculum inspires and engages our children. It offers first hand experiences and investigative learning, whilst insisting on routine and rigour. We ensure that children are given opportunities to widen their knowledge and understanding of the world (particularly our local environment) and learn and apply skills which will make them successful learners for life as well as enhancing their social, moral, spiritual and cultural development. All children are challenged in all areas of the curriculum. Our intention is to provide a knowledge rich curriculum that builds on prior learning and key skills., equipping the children with life skills throughout primary, before they take the next step in their educational journey.
Our children have faced many different life experiences and hence the wellbeing agenda flows through our school. We use the Rights Respecting Award as a vehicle to fully develop the wellbeing of our children.
How is our Curriculum implemented?
All children receive 10% of the school timetable as RE in line with the Diocesan expectation as they work through the ‘Come and See’ Curriculum.
The Cornerstones Curriculum is a creative and thematic approach to learning that is mapped to the 2014 Primary National Curriculum to ensure comprehensive coverage of national expectations. Our curriculum will be delivered through imaginative learning projects (ILPs) which will provide a rich menu of exciting and motivating learning activities that make creative links between all aspects of our children’s learning.
We believe children learn best when they are encouraged to use their imagination and apply their learning to engaging contexts. Our curriculum will provide lots of learning challenges throughout the academic year that will require children to solve problems, apply themselves creatively and express their knowledge and understanding effectively across the curriculum.
Cornerstones also provide a rigorous, essential skills framework that outlines the end of year expectations in all subjects. These essential skills are tied to activities and are age related so that staff can track children’s progress and identify their individual learning needs.
School uses Read Write Inc as the model for delivering phonics across Key Stage 1. For children who need additional phonics support in Key Stage 2, firstly Read Write Inc is used before moving onto Fresh Start.
We are working towards the ‘Rights Respecting’ Level 2 Accreditation, this will develop our Curriculum to improve the wellbeing of all our children.
We go beyond the expectation of the National Curriculum in our PE provision. We provide specialist PE teachers to enrich and enhance children’s experiences through their senses and physical interaction with their surroundings, both in the curriculum and through extra-curricular opportunities. We offer a vast array of opportunities to participate and excel in sporting events and all children in school from Year 1 to Year 6 have the opportunity to learn to swim.
We do this by offering a variety of opportunities:
- Children in Year 5 & 6 are to experience a residential trip to London and to PGL for team building experiences that are challenging.
- Variety of after school clubs, music tuition, drama,
- Visitors to enhance multi-cultural week and aspirations week.
Values based curriculum – British Values, SMSC, pupil voice, pupil responsibilities and roles such as Break Buddies and Liturgical team, Presentation Monitors, Sports Ambassadors, House Captains. Children organise charity events sometimes working with other schools, outside agencies and the community.
Our curriculum is based on well researched cognitive theories that are evidence based. We use strategies to help children increase their memory and to store and retrieve previous learned content, thus enhancing retention of information and knowledge. All subjects and personal progress is tracked rigorously through Cornerstones and O Track 3 times per year.
To help children see the ‘bigger picture’ and develop as Global citizens within our global community we work to a values based curriculum, which encompasses British Values, SMSC. This is realised through pupil s voice and pupil responsibilities in roles such as Break Buddies, Liturgical team, Presentation Monitors, Sports ambassadors, house captains.
Our Core beliefs are underpinned by our Gospel values and are realised in our children participating in celebrations and memorials, international school awards, fair trade and they are encouraged to achieve awards such as the ‘Rights Respecting Award’. Within our local community we participate in occasions such as sporting events, Lincolnshire events, and make links with our secondary providers. Within our own school community, we hold special days, events, workshops, weekly celebration assemblies; such as Aspirations week, Multi-cultural week and fund-raising events for charities.
The Impact of our Curriculum
Our quality curriculum ensures that our children leave us as with a wealth of experiences and as well rounded, resilient individuals that are able to reach their potential; academically, personally and spiritually. Our pupils leave St Mary’s feeling loved, valued and confident learners ready for the challenges on their learning pathway.
An awareness and a sense of pride for the area they live and maybe one-day work in.