Curriculum & Early Years
Our School Curriculum
At St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School, pupils’ learning and personal development are at the heart of the curriculum. Our school curriculum is underpinned by the National Curriculum’s requirements and the shared belief that successful learners are inspired and challenged to grow to be thoughtful citizens of the future. The curriculum reflects our school’s vision to Love and learn in the footsteps of Christ.
Importance is placed upon developing transferable skills, meaning our pupils become lifelong learners. The curriculum is designed to recognise children’s prior learning, providing a clear progression of skills where deeper knowledge and connections are nurtured, and links are made between concepts and skills.
The curriculum promotes and sustains a thirst for knowledge, understanding and a love of learning. We cover a wide range of subjects and provide opportunities for academic, creative and sporting excellence. Emphasis is placed on acquiring, developing and applying core skills in reading, writing, communication and mathematics, throughout all subjects taught.
Every child is recognised as a unique individual made in the image of God. Our curriculum is designed in response to each child’s needs considering their place in this nurturing family school, local community, and the world beyond. Opportunities for enjoyable, independent, and collaborative learning are integrated wholly within a connected and relevant curriculum, raising curiosity and building aspirations.
With its excellent range of experiences, our full and rich curriculum ensures that every child at St. Joseph’s makes excellent progress academically and personally. Our unique curriculum ensures that every child is given the opportunity to shine and flourish.
We carefully monitor children’s progress with their personal development. Our well-planned and thoughtful approach to Social, Moral, Spiritual, Cultural (SMSC) helps ensure that every child is well cared for and supported.
We plan enhancement opportunities to engage learning in the classroom, our school grounds and beyond. This is also supported by a wide range of extra-curricular activities that also enrich our children’s opportunities. In addition, the curriculum is designed to: provide a breadth of knowledge, inspiring and exciting experiences, promote resilience, responsibility and respect within a happy and ambitious school community.
Children leave St Joseph’s with the confidence and self-belief necessary to have high expectations of themselves and their future.
Long Term Plans
At St Joseph’s, we follow the National Curriculum and the Early Years (under 5s) Framework.
The ambitious curriculum is coherently planned, sequenced towards cumulatively sufficient knowledge and skills for future learning and employment. The school will:
- provide a high-quality education for all pupils so that they leave with the skills and knowledge required for the next stage of their life;
- prepare pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life;
- promote the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils at the school and society;
- ensure pupils are prepared for the general demands of the Year 7 curriculum;
- ensure lessons contribute well to delivering the curriculum intent.
EARLY YEARS FOUNDATION STAGE (EYFS) – 3 TO 5 YEARS OF AGE
The Early Years Foundation Stage covers the period of learning for children in Nursery and Reception. The curriculum is presented in a rich, stable, caring and effective environment that enables each child to realise their full potential.
The Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum is taught in ways that build on a child’s curiosity and interests, enabling them to learn through planned, worthwhile play activities. Children in the EYFS learn by playing and exploring, being active, and through creative and critical thinking, both indoors and outside.
Children in our Early Years classes follow the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum, which consists of seven learning areas.
These are Communication and Language, Physical Development and Personal, Social and Emotional Development.
These prime areas are those most essential for your child’s healthy development and future learning. As children grow, the prime areas will help them develop skills in 4 specific areas: Literacy, Mathematics, Understanding the World and Expressive Arts and Design.
All seven areas are used to plan your child’s learning and activities and are designed to be flexible so that staff can follow each child’s unique needs and interests. Although young children do not separate learning into curriculum areas, every aspect of the curriculum is interrelated and interdependent, and the seven areas form the framework on which the Early Years Foundation Stage is built.
We teach children by ensuring challenging, playful opportunities across both the prime and specific areas of learning. We recognise that all children develop and learn at different rates; therefore, our EYFS curriculum is designed flexibly to meet the needs of all individuals. We support individual learning through our skilful interactions and observations, which lead to detailed next step planning. The Characteristics of Effective Learning underpin our curriculum and pupils learning; through an enabling and well-planned environment, we ensure we provide meaningful opportunities for playing and learning active learning and creating and thinking critically. As children utilise and develop these characteristics, they become effective and motivated learners who demonstrate high levels of well-being and involvement.
The principles which guide the work of all early years practitioners are grouped into four themes.
- A Unique Child – Every child is a unique child who is constantly learning and can be resilient, capable, confident and self-assured.
- Positive Relationships – Children learn to be strong and independent through positive relationships.
- Enabling Environments – Children learn and develop well in enabling environments in which their experiences respond to their individual needs, and there is a strong partnership between practitioners, parents and carers.
- Learning and Development – Children develop and learn in different ways. The framework covers all the children’s education, including those children with special educational needs and disabilities. Practitioners teach children by ensuring challenging, playful opportunities across the prime and specific areas of learning and development.
If you would like any further information regarding our curriculum, please contact the School Office.