At Snape and Thornton Watlass, we believe that every child is unique and deserves the chance to develop their individual interests, talents and skills whilst being inspired to explore and discover new experiences and what the wider community and world has to offer.
Our curriculum provides rich and varied learning experiences which are underpinned by the statutory requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum and the Primary National Curriculum for the core and foundation subjects. We also recognise the need for a broader curriculum full of engaging and purposeful quality learning opportunities which fully embrace the strengths which living in a rural area offers: a strong sense of community; fantastic Forest Schools experiences, whilst also enabling our children to develop wider knowledge, understanding and experiences of diversity, British Values and a sense of responsibility for the world in which we live. Also integral to our curriculum and everyday practice are our Christian Values of Co-operation, Resilience, Friendship, Respect, Caring and Responsibility. Our curriculum has been carefully designed with these broader values in mind, providing memorable experiences and learning opportunities from which they can learn and develop a range of transferable skills.
Underpinning all learning is a commitment to promote positive learning behaviours and attitudes which allow our children to grow as individuals whilst developing a life-long love of learning and high aspirations for their future. Through the provision of varied and rich opportunities, we inspire and encourage our children to make a positive contribution to their local community and the wider society, live healthy lifestyles, be moral citizens and take opportunities to extend their horizons.
We use the Cornerstones Curriculum to help us to ensure coverage and progression of the knowledge, understanding and skills outlined within the Primary National Curriculum. The Cornerstones Curriculum is designed with the belief that, ‘all children deserve an education rich in wonder and memorable experience. One that allows children's natural creativity and curiosity to flourish, alongside the purposeful acquisition of skills and knowledge’. The creative and thematic approach offered by Cornerstones Learning Projects provides a basis upon which we build and further design our curriculum to enhance and enrich our children’s education, making it suitable for our school family of children.
Our curriculum is carefully designed to balance the National Curriculum expectations with the unique needs of the children within our school family community. We have carefully selected Imaginative Learning Projects (ILPs), Knowledge Rich Projects (KRP) and Love to Investigate (LTI) projects from the wide variety offered by Cornerstones. These projects have been reviewed, adapted and enhanced to ensure they best meet our curriculum intent. In addition, we have created our own projects which provide unique learning opportunities relevant to our children. The projects form the basis of a 3 year rolling long term plan.
Frequent monitoring and evaluation ensures that our curriculum is dynamic, adapting to the context of our school and our children’s needs. Our teaching staff value the different ways in which children learn and plan lessons which respond to these differences. Lessons are planned to ensure a range of experiences which allow our children to draw upon knowledge and skills from different subjects, make connections and understand the relevance of this knowledge in everyday life. Planning which is rich in knowledge and skills is driven by age related expectations which ensure a purposeful and exciting learning journey for every child. High expectations to demonstrate a breadth of vocabulary, develop strong cross-curricular links and transferable knowledge, understanding and skills underpin all teaching and learning. Quality classroom environments and resources stimulate and promote quality thinking and reasoning, while our metacognition work and feedback policy is an opportunity for children to become independent, resilient and self-assured learners. Personal development and relationships shape our approach to learning to ensure that our pupils are happy, emotionally intelligent citizens who know themselves and their place in the world as unique individuals.
We value both formative and summative assessment and use the outcomes of these to inform where we need to take our children next.
Involvement with our community is an integral part of our curriculum. We engage families and visitors with our children’s learning by regularly inviting them in to share learning experiences through open afternoons, collective worship and information sessions. This year has seen parents joining our children for a range of opportunities to share in their children's learning, such as our 1950s party, a Mayan experience, a bake-off and an African drumming performance.
We provide a variety of extra-curricular activities for pupils that enhance their learning experience. The activities range from after-school clubs (including gymnastics, athletics, film and chess) to educational trips and visits (British Vales Song Workshop, Bewerley Park, Royal Navy Museum, and local trips to the library and travel agency using public transport).
We are confident that the impact of our curriculum can be clearly seen through the way in which our children develop into confident, motivated learners; very well-equipped to take on the challenges of their next stage of education. They take with them very fond memories of their time in our school, of the staff and of each other.
Pupils’ personal development is a strength, and is evident in the way that pupils contribute to the life of school and how they interact with each other and the world around them. Our pupils understand and express their emotions well and handle interpersonal relationships judiciously and empathetically. We are proud to see that our drive to improve children’s learning behaviours is having a clear impact: they are becoming increasingly independent and resilient; developing a repertoire of life-long skills which support them in overcoming challenges and making progress.
Through a collective responsibility for raising standards and improving pupil outcomes, and a rich, broad and relevant curriculum, our children develop detailed knowledge and skills across all subjects. They are able to transfer their knowledge and skills into wider contexts; making links.
We use rigorous monitoring throughout the year to evaluate the impact of our curriculum design. Staff and governors monitor individual curriculum subjects: reviewing learning and the impact of teaching, evaluating pupil voice, tracking attainment and progress, celebrating and sharing highly-effective practice proven to have an impact upon learning. We continually review provision and how effectively it meets the needs of our children, and feed areas identified for development into our focused school improvement plan.
Assessment for Learning (AfL) is continuously used to drive forward the learning of our children. Summative assessments show evidence of an improving trend in pupil learning outcomes. Just as importantly, our children also achieve success in the wider aspects of life. Our children represent the school in sporting events, take part in community events and are proactive in considering how they can impact upon and improve the lives of others and the world around us.
We fully recognise the privileged position that we are in to be working with our children at Snape and Thornton Watlass, and our greatest reward is seeing our children flourish and hearing of their achievements.
The Standards and Testing Agency outline expectations of what children should be able to do by the end of Year 2 and Year 6 in reading, writing, maths and science to achieve the national standard. Please click the links below to access the frameworks: