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Curriculum: Intent, Implementation & the Impact

At Wootton Park School we have developed a curriculum which:

  • Develop our learner’s learning (Our head and body: what we learn)
  • Develop the character of our learners (Our heart and character: Who we are when we learn)
  • Develop behaviours and habits to become effective learners (Our actions and attitudes: How we act when we learn)
  • Develop the moral compass of our learners (Our place in the community and wider world: Who we are)

Our curriculum has a clear purpose and is focused around excitement and love for learning. We aim to ensure that learning is bespoke to the needs of our learners and demonstrates a strong understanding about specific needs to succeed in life. 

Intent - What are we trying to achieve here with, and through, the curriculum?

Intention 1: Develop our learner’s learning (Our head and body: what we learn)

To develop the appropriate subject specific knowledge, skills and understanding as set out in the National Curriculum and beyond, so that children can flourish, reach and exceed their potential academically, physically and artistically.

Intention 2: Develop the character of our learners (Our heart and character: who we are when we learn)

To develop learners to have a holistic set of values that prepares them for life in the modern world in a diverse and ever changing community and work place.

Intention 3: Develop behaviours and habits to become effective learners (Our actions and attitudes: how we act when we learn)

To develop the behaviours learners need to succeed in the world such as concentration, perseverance, imagination, co-operation, the enjoyment of learning, self-improvement and curiosity.

Intention 4: Develop the moral compass of our learners (Our place in the community and wider world: who we are)

To understand spirituality in themselves and others, develop social skills and understand society, build a firm set of personal morality, and to engage in the culture they live in and understand the cultures of others.

Curriculum Implementation

Our curriculum will be implemented with our intentions as the drivers behind our actions.  By ensuring we think about what we learn, who we are when we are learning, how we act when we learn and who we are in the world, we build happy, resilient, successful, good citizens. Our implementation plan ensures our curriculum keeps us focussed on these areas.

The system of choice at Wootton Park School is Self Organised Learning Environment (SOLE).  We have the National Curriculum, which we use as a starting point, and embellish and deepen further as a school but at the heart of this is learners being exposed to quality experiences and lessons with a large element of choice and need for independent thinking.  Flip Learning opportunities are used ahead of teaching to enable learners to become immersed in their own learning. Visits and enrichment clubs allow learners even greater opportunities to find and develop their individual interests and personal talents. Visitors and parents coming into school to help at regular opportunities bolsters our offer and deepens experiences further.  

Intention 1: Develop our learner’s learning

Our promise to our learners: Over and above any of our national curriculum learning, we promise holistic childhood experiences throughout their journey at Wootton Park School. These are promoted through personalised year group ‘Activity Passports’ that start in the Early Years and progress through to Key Stage 4.  Examples include: Learn to light a fire; climb a mountain; build something bigger than myself; learn an instrument; see a play; make my own clothing; run a business and many more.

In the Primary Phase we use the White Rose material for our daily maths lessons and we assess using PUMA standardised materials alongside teacher assessment. 

In writing we use Jane Considines approach to learning. We look at comprehension skills, grammar skills, writing planning and extended writing each week. This regular routine enables the learners to build up competency. We complete a ‘Writing of the Month’ assessment and use Jane Considines progression and assessment grids. Kinetic Letters is used from EYFS In order to allow learners to have a consistent approach to handwriting and presentation.

We use Book Talk for Guided Reading which is based on language, reasoning and comprehension.  We have a progressive and varied reading scheme that covers all genres and allows learners to choose books for enjoyment linked to their development stage.  Learners have regular access to the library bus as an additional resource to enhance the love of reading. The Library bus provides learners with the space and time to make choices about books, and to discover authors and texts they might not get chance to look at outside of school. Additional to this our learners engage in cross phase shared reading.

Primary Foundation Subjects and Secondary Phase Subjects

Our teachers plan foundation subjects using progressive skills and knowledge.  Learning is checked against these to ensure progression and understanding. Teachers keep a record of how leaners are achieving and intervene effectively and collaboratively to close any skills or knowledge gaps.

Our teachers plan a wide variety of offsite educational visits, including residentials. Visitors are also invited into school as a way of enhancing subject knowledge and providing the learners with real life experiences. 

Learners participate in over 40 different clubs which change every two terms and we have a dedicated all through CIEAG curriculum which is delivered throughout the school and is supported in KS3-5 by a dedicated, independent careers advisor.

Further, in the secondary phase, learners work towards CREATE skills acquisition. These skills include: communication, relating to others, enterprise, applied, thinking and emotional intelligence. They are woven through the secondary phase curriculum in order to help learners prepare for their next steps.

Intention 2: Develop the character of our learners   

We follow a Values Based Learning programme in the school, which explores values that are critical for us to understand in modern Britain and beyond. Each day, our school community models, teaches and promotes a range of values that we need to demonstrate in order to become good citizens of the world. We think carefully about the value, explore it in learning and demonstrate this whenever we can.

Our teachers ask learners to undertake positions of responsibility around the school, as we believe that children understand values by seeing them in action in others. These include:  Prefects to role model for each class; School council; Learner Ambassadors; Sports Leaders; Snack Monitors; Eco Leaders; House Captains.

Intention 3: Develop behaviours and habits to become effective learners

Teachers design learning opportunities that look for ways to develop good learning behaviours. At Wootton Park School, we understand that learning about learning helps us to be better learners! In our curriculum, we ask learners to look for ways to develop concentration, perseverance, imagination, co-operation, the enjoyment of learning, self-improvement and curiosity. For example, in the curriculum we try to frame our learning around questions: Where do the leaves go in winter? Will you ever see the water you drink again? How do I know I’m being good?

The staff at Wootton Park notice when learners are showing great learning behaviours. We award certificates for this in our regular celebration assembly. When we work as a team, we collect house points that earn a prize. Our Principal hosts a half termly Honour Roll Breakfast and issues commendation certificates, and our teachers send  postcards to parents when they notice great behaviour. Once a term, we are awarded certificates for: Attitude to learning, Progress in learning, Behaviour, Attendance.

Intention 4: Develop the moral compass of our learners

When planning the curriculum teachers think not just about what learners should learn and how they should learn it, but also how they can bring in an understanding of morality and the wider world. They do this through:

  • SMSC is planned for and highlighted to us by our teachers across the curriculum. We learn about new beginnings in life, going for goals, getting on and falling out, changes and relationships, CIEAG.  This helps us understand our place in the world.
  • They ensure that in our half termly learning, they think about how to challenge stereotypes. For example in EYFS, when we learn about toys, our teachers ask leaners “Do we have girl’s and boy’s toys?”; when we learn cooking skills, we think about who prepares the food in our own homes. In Key Stage 3, we learn about slavery, both historical and modern, thinking about why it happens and what motivates this. Our teachers identify positive role models that challenge stereotypes for us to learn about.
  • Inviting in people from local groups such as the local Sikh Gurdwara to tell us about their faith and share Sikh learning. We work with lots of local religious groups to get a good understanding of the beliefs of others.
  • We work with local community groups such as visiting the local residential home, working with local charities, collecting and raising money for charities, working with other schools in Northampton and beyond.
  • We aim to increase our learner’s engagement with activities that benefit other members of the community and beyond.

Impact

What do we hope will be the impact of our curriculum and how do we measure it?

The SOLE mindset places the learner back at the centre of curriculum and makes teachers think "What will the experience be for the learner and how can we make the absolute most of each element?" The SOLE aspect promotes learners making both group and personal connections with the content due to having genuine freedom of expression and choice.  It is beginning to produce learners who must and can, think for themselves, be resilient and face challenges with strategies to overcome and progress.

Intention 1: Develop our learner’s learning

We strive to ensure that our children’s attainment in core, foundation subjects and KS3 is in line with or exceeding their potential when we consider the varied starting points of children. We measure this carefully using a range of materials, but always considering Age Related Expectations. We intend that the impact is that children will be academically and physically prepared for life in high school and in Modern Britain and the world.

Intention 2: Develop the character of our learners  

The impact will be that our learners will have fully rounded characters with a clear understanding of complex values like equality, friendship, trust and many others. Only by really learning what these mean will our learners be able to develop a character that prepares them for living in the community demonstrating tolerance and equality. We measure this not just by the work our children produce, but in the behaviours we see each and every day in all learners on the playground, in corridors, and in the many roles we give them. The impact of this intention is seen in the daily interaction of all members of our community, including staff and children.

Intention 3: Develop behaviours and habits to become effective learners

The impact we intend to achieve by developing this intention is seen by how the children approach challenges every day. This could be on the playground, in a game or disagreement, or in class in a complex learning challenge. The impact should be that children don’t give up, are highly motivated to succeed and achieve and are equipped with all the personal skills to do this.

Intention 4: Develop the moral compass of our learners

Our learners will be motivated by a strong personal sense of morality. They will make decisions for the right reasons and in the best interests of their community. They will be able to decide what is right and what is wrong, and will be resilient to the influence of others. They will go out into the world and make a difference in their own life and to others. Our learners will be the owners of their own destinies.