National Curriculum

Delivery of The National Curriculum

At St Jude’s Primary School, our vision statement underpins the delivery of the National Curriculum. We aim to facilitate an atmosphere of independence, creativity and structure where each child will thrive and develop, knowing that their voice will be heard. Our school aims to provide a balanced and broad curriculum which promotes:

  • Spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of our pupils;
  • Understanding of British values;

Our curriculum prepares pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of their future lives. We seek to inspire enterprise, innovation and creative thought within our children.

At St Jude’s we are-

 “Learning for Life and Aiming for Excellence; ready to take our place in God’s world”

The curriculum consists of the core subjects, foundation subjects and RE/SRE. The delivery of RE is guided by the Agreed Syllabus which is reviewed every five years.

We aim to provide parents with an overview of the curriculum for each year group so that the required coverage and end of year expectations are clear.

The overview indicates how subjects are delivered, consolidated and extended as the child passes from year group to year group. The curriculum promotes sequence and progression across the key stages. 

 

Maths Curriculum

Our aim is develop confident, passionate, and independent mathematicians. Through the delivery of the National Curriculum 2014 we strive to make maths lessons meaningful and linked to the world around the children.

Children are encouraged to problem solve within a context so they are able to make meaningful links between different concepts and develop their mathematical understanding within a real life setting. In order to access their learning, children are taught how to use a range of practical resources and independence of choice and use of these resources is promoted within our classrooms.

During maths sessions across the school, children are encouraged to articulate their thought processes, decision making and methods through the ongoing use of mathematical reasoning. From year 1 to year 6 the children express these thoughts and are able to talk maths in a range of contexts and for a range of purposes.

Within all of this, children develop their ability to become fluent mathematicians who are able to rapidly recall facts when needed and use them in an appropriate context. Mental maths is practised daily from year 1 to year 6, in which children develop their understanding and fluency of: number bonds, doubling and halving and times table facts to 12 x 12.

In the Early Years setting we encourage children to explore their surroundings with a mathematical outlook. We actively engage in learning opportunities that cover number, shape, space and measure and ensure there is opportunity for teacher and child initiated learning and maths talk. We encourage outdoor learning in mathematics to engage the children and help them develop a meaningful practical sense of mathematics.

 

English Curriculum

At St. Jude’s Primary School, we have an English curriculum that is designed to empower and challenge our children, giving them knowledge and skills to thrive in our changing world.

Reading

Reading is at the heart of our curriculum - texts are carefully selected to ensure representation of a variety of cultures, faiths and circumstances, reflecting our children at St. Jude’s and their own lives. We believe it is integral that children are exposed to a broad range of texts, from classics, to contemporary fiction, to poetry, to picture books.  We hope that these will bring enjoyment, as well as helping children to access the whole curriculum. Children meet and access reading through a variety of platforms: Phonics Teaching; 1:1 Reading; Whole Class Reading Lessons; and Reading for Pleasure (DEAR).

Phonics

In EYFS, we encourage ‘book talk’. The children learn to handle books, talk about what is happening and begin to recognise key words. We apply these skills alongside our phonics teaching, using the Phonics Bug scheme. Phonics is taught daily in EYFS and Y1, and, where appropriate, children are grouped by their stage in learning to ensure that they are challenged and able to progress at their own pace.

1:1 Reading

All children in Foundation Stage and Key Stage One receive one-to-one reading; the frequency of which is determined by their needs. In these sessions, and for their home reading, children read phonically decodable books, which are closely matched to their phonics level. Children are also encouraged to take home a ‘reading for pleasure’ book to share at home.

From Year 1 to Year 6, children read with a teacher regularly. Each half term, we carry out a 1:1 Reading Assessment with our children. This means that we can identify and target more personalised support where it is needed, whether it be for phonics support, surface-level retrieval, or deeper comprehension. Children are also encouraged to read at home with an adult, with a book that is at their own reading level, as well as a book from our well-stocked library.

Whole Class Reading Lessons

From Year 1 to Year 6, we teach Whole Class Reading Sessions. These involve a combination of: fluency activities linked to prosody - reading with expression; comprehension: reading a section of the text and taking part in activities which deepen our understanding of it; and vocabulary tasks, exploring high-quality, new, tier-2 vocabulary from our class texts. In all these activities, the teachers use opportunities to deepen ‘book talk’ and to develop the children’s spoken vocabulary.

Reading for Pleasure

DEAR (Drop Everything And Read) time happens across the school, once a week. During this time, children are encouraged to read a book of their choosing, share books with friends, read books they might not read during English lessons, such as comics, and discuss their preferences with the teacher and class mates. DEAR time is also a chance for the class teacher to read a selected novel. We believe this is vital, quality time to imbue children with a love and enjoyment of reading and stories. It is also affords teachers with an important opportunity to model the prosody of language.

The children also have access to a quality, well-stocked onsite library with texts ranging from classics including traditional tales and Shakespeare, to picture books and contemporary authors, such as Benjamin Zephaniah, Malorie Blackman, Elizabeth Laird and Beverly Naidoo. Each class has a designated library slot, in which to explore these high quality texts.

We are proud to welcome an array of visiting authors to St. Jude’s. Past visitors have included Ali Sparkes. We also endeavour to include events which promote reading for pleasure within our school calendar including Scholastic Book Fairs and participation in events such as World Book Day and National Poetry Day.

Writing

At St. Jude’s, our writing curriculum has a clear emphasis on writing for a specific purpose and audience. Once again, we have a focus on learning for life, and we thrive on writing in a number of genres for real-life situations. As a result, children understand writing as a vital means of communication and self-expression.

Our Writing curriculum is intrinsically linked to Reading. Across the school, writing lessons are taught through high-quality texts, selected to represent our demographic, support language development, and encourage use of new and challenging vocabulary.

Our units of writing begin with immersive experiences, which ensure children are aware of the context. High quality models, discussion and practice of key grammatical skills, vocabulary exploration and shared writing form the ‘teaching’ for each unit of writing. Children are given the opportunity to plan, draft, edit and publish each piece of writing.

Across the school, the children experience a variety of writing genres with an appropriate balance of fiction and non-fiction from different genres of narrative, to newspaper reports and biographies.

Spelling

In order to become fluent and effective writers, it is important that our children become competent spellers. In EYFS and KS1, we follow Phonics Bug, and children apply their phonological awareness for spelling. Incorporated into the programme are tricky words which do not follow phonics patterns.

From Year 2 to Year 6, we follow the No Nonsense Spelling scheme, which explores a multi-strategy approach to teaching spelling, including phonology, morphology, etymology and orthography. There is a focus on an investigative approach to learning, with the children encouraged to consider what they notice about the spelling of different groups of words.

At St. Jude’s, we do not encourage the learning of individual words for tests, but instead, we encourage a metacognitive approach to spelling - with children considering what they know about words, and how they can apply this knowledge to their own writing.

Handwriting

At St. Jude’s, our children start by mark making in the early years and focus on letter formation in Year 1, using a ‘lead-out’ style. From Year 2, after learning how to form letters correctly, our pupils are taught to join handwriting which enables fluency and efficiency.

 

Science

The school is well equipped for science and most of the work is practically based. We have achieved very good results in science and continue to support this work through investigative curriculum links.

 

Religious Education

Religious Education plays an important part in the life of the school. We follow the Hampshire recommended syllabus, Living Difference, alongside Understanding Christianity and Emma Yarlett's Big Frieze. Apart from the actual RE lessons, the children attend collective worship during the week, Neil Smart is the Vicar of St Jude’s Church and also a Foundation Governor. The children also visit the Cathedral and St Jude's Church a number of times during the year. 

For more information on curriculum coverage and our foundation subjects please see the yearly curriculum maps or join us for our workshops, open evenings and parents evenings.

 

If you require further information about any elements of our curriculum please contact the leadership team through leadership@st-judes.portsmouth.sch.uk