Curriculum Intent, Implementation & Impact
Our Vision for the Curriculum at the Forest CE Federation
The Forest CE Federation aims to provide children with an exciting, broad and balanced curriculum that will instil a love of learning. Our approach enables all children to become lifelong learners by developing transferable skills to equip them to succeed in a competitive world. A strong Christian ethos permeates through our daily lives ensuring our pupils are cared for in a safe, nurturing environment within our small community.
Everyone is valued as an individual and helped to develop and progress in their own unique way within a Christian environment. Our vision, ‘Small enough to care , Large enough to inspire , Valuing All God’s children’ is at the core of everything we do. The curriculum we offer is not merely academic, but embraces the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of all pupils and is deeply rooted in our vision that:
‘All things are possible for one who believes’ Mark 9 v23 .
We believe in the “whole child” and are committed to children’s wider well-being through our creative inclusive curriculum, which is driven by our spiritual values.
Our curriculum is designed to spark curiosity in young minds through carefully planned opportunities for pupils to acquire, apply and master their knowledge and skills in a unique learning environment.
We know that a child who feels happy, safe and secure will have the confidence to try their best and achieve in all that they do. We endeavour to provide all children with the knowledge, skills and environment in which to thrive.
Our curriculum is underpinned by two main threads :
For ALL our children to develop high levels of oracy. To have a rich and broad vocabulary, to be confident and literate within society.
To know about the world: to know what it has to offer, how it differs from their locality and how others experience the world.
We define progress as the widening and deepening of essential knowledge, skills, understanding and behaviours. This is done through how we deliver our curriculum; Continuous Provision.
At the Forest Federation, we plan learning in a thematic approach using quality texts to inspire discussion, support the development of reading and provide opportunities for high quality writing within each theme.
Themes have been organised across the classes to ensure that there are a variety of curriculum drivers that cover the content of the National Curriculum.
As we have mixed age classes, we have adapted our implementation of the curriculum to suit the needs of our pupils. Teacher rarely teach as a whole class, instead the curriculum is planned and designed to give pupils the opportunities to work specifically with the teacher, in small groups and independently.
The pupils throughout each day have to complete their core learning and their COOL tasks, (Carrying On Our Learning). Throughout the day/week pupils will access a variety of activities and subjects which we call Continuous Provision. At times learning will be directed and other times more open-ended enquiry based approach.
We see the local community as so valuable to our children’s learning, so we thread these links into the curriculum throughout the year.
Using the outdoors as a learning environment is fundamental to our values and this can be school based or with enrichment visits to other locations. Trips/activities are all vital to enhance the learning opportunities we offer our children.
Curriculum Impact: What difference does the curriculum make to our children?
At the Forest CE Federation we strive for all pupils to achieve their absolute potential, by having high expectations across the board. Children make rapid progress from Foundation Stage and, by the end of Key Stage Two, do extremely well when compared with national and local results across all subjects at both the expected standard and at greater depth. Our stimulating creative curriculum prioritises core skills in English, Maths and PSHE whilst actively encompassing the acquisition of knowledge and skills across all area of the National Curriculum. The innovative practice across the school provides a strong foundation and opportunities for children to collaborate and develop social skills both indoors and out. This curriculum design ensures that the needs of individual and small groups of children can be met within the environment of high quality-first teaching, supported by targeted, proven interventions where appropriate. In this way it can be seen to impact in a very positive way on children’s outcomes. The impact and measure of our curriculum is to ensure children not only acquire the appropriate age-related knowledge linked to the curriculum but also skills which equip them to progress from their starting points. In shaping our curriculum this way, progress is measured and evidenced for all children, regardless of their starting points or specific needs. Enjoyment of the curriculum promotes achievement, confidence and excellent behaviour.
When our children leave us, as well as being ready for a KS3 curriculum, they have a wealth of transferrable skills which have been developed throughout their time at primary school in an inclusive and nurturing environment. Our children enjoy lessons and we believe this early love of learning stimulates children to become life-long learners. Our work on promoting social skills and character traits through our curriculum, which include all our key Christian Values enables children to become excellent role models and aspire to be the very best they can be. Developing their independence, motivation and attitudes as learners, and their sense of responsibility as future citizens is at the heart of all our teaching and learning.
We ensure quality teaching enables our children to develop their lifelong love for learning. Teachers and staff work hard to plan a broad, balanced and ambitious curriculum which is expertly delivered to ensure a child’s entire school experience enables them to develop a deep body of knowledge which will see them through to further study, work and a successful adult life in whatever pathway they choose.
We are proud that once the children from our Primary Schools have moved on to secondary school, they leave us as confident well adjusted young adults ready for their next stage in education and life.
Monitoring & Reviewing Impact of the curriculum:
Our children are assessed within every lesson which helps the teacher plan the next steps to be taught. At the end of each term assessment data is gathered and progress is monitored by the Senior Leadership Team. Children are expected to make good or better progress in all subjects and this individual progress is tracked and reported to parents at Parents’ Evenings and within End-of-term Reports.
Our dedicated Governing Body also play an important role in monitoring and reviewing. They work closely with all staff and complete Learning Walks within each school.
Subject leaders play an important part in the success of the curriculum by leading a regular programme of monitoring, evaluation and review and the celebration of good practice contributes to the ongoing commitment to evolve and improve further. All subject leaders are given access to training and CPD opportunities to keep developing their own subject knowledge, skills and understanding, so they can support curriculum development and the professional practice of colleagues.
The role of the Subject Leader and/or team is to:
- Provide a strategic lead and direction for the subject.
- Support and advise colleagues on issues related to the subject.
- Monitor pupils’ progress in that subject area.
- Provide efficient resource management for the subject.
- Keep up-to-date with developments in their key area of learning at both national and local levels.
- Monitor how their subjects are taught through monitoring the medium- and short-term planning ensuring that appropriate teaching strategies are used.
- Reviewing curriculum plans for their key areas ensuring there is full coverage of the National Curriculum and that progression is planned for.
- Review the way the subjects are taught in the school and plan for improvement linking to whole school priorities.
- Lead sustainable improvement through supporting colleagues and others.
- Judge standards within their subjects so they indicate the achievements of children at each key stage and indicate expectations of attainment.
- Evaluate teaching and learning, and assessment within their subjects.
- Have a secure awareness of the schemes of work for EYFS, KS1 and KS2.
- Report to the Headteacher on the strengths and areas for development of the subject and the strategies for improvement.
It is the role of each Subject Leader and/or team to keep up-to-date with developments in their subject, at both national and local level. They review the way the subject is taught in the school, and plan for improvement - development planning links to whole-school objectives and priorities. Each Subject Leader reviews the curriculum plans for the subject and sees that knowledge, progression and acquisition of skills is planned into schemes of work.