At Millfields we aim to prepare our children well for their future by providing varied opportunities and experiences through our curriculum. We want our children to develop an appreciation of the richness of the world in which we live and to achieve great things, without any limitations on their aspirations. Our curriculum provides our children with the essential skills and knowledge that they will require to live in their future world, including the development of key life skills, developing a greater awareness of global issues and enabling them to consider how they can play their part in making our world a better place for future generations.
- Encourages our children to have high aspirations through challenging questions, posed at the start of each unit of work, which are explored throughout the term. There is a focus on developing pupils’ vocabulary in each termly unit of work, particularly within the focus subject.
- Enables our children to develop essential life skills, which will enable them to succeed in all that they do, through the Skills Builder Programme, as well as through revisiting our school values throughout our units of work.
- Teaches our children to be open-minded, tolerant, fair, respectful and responsible citizens who embrace equality and are eager to contribute to local and global communities by exploring ‘big questions’ which have a global dimension.
- Provides children with inspiring experiences and opportunities through visits, visitors and a strong focus on the arts, sport and outdoor learning.
The National Curriculum provides pupils with an introduction to the essential knowledge that they need to be educated citizens. However, this is just one element in the education of every child. There is time and space in the school day and in each week, term and year to extend beyond the National Curriculum specifications. The National Curriculum provides an outline of core knowledge around which teachers can develop exciting and stimulating lessons to promote the development of pupils’ knowledge, understanding and skills as part of the wider school curriculum.
At Millfields, our curriculum is taught in a thematic and cross-curricular way wherever possible. The year is divided into quarters to ensure that an equal amount of time is spent on each unit. In addition to National Curriculum objectives, we teach our children progressive skills, as well as essential life skills through our Skills Builder Programme, alongside reinforcing our school values. We also encourage our children to consider big questions through each unit of work, whilst exploring different key concepts identified for each quarter.
Our curriculum enables children to:
- Develop a love of learning
- Be aspirational in their hopes and dreams for their future and for what they are able to achieve during their time with us and beyond.
- Access experiences and opportunities which inspire them through visits and visitors, with a strong focus on the arts, sport and outdoor learning.
- Be open-minded, tolerant, fair, respectful and responsible citizens who embrace equality and diversity
- Feel safe and valued as part of a caring community that celebrates success
- Be independent thinkers / learners who are able to seek solutions creatively and cooperatively
- Develop an enquiring mind and be able to ask questions
- Be able to listen and articulate responses showing consideration to others
- Be proactive in their responsibilities towards the community, society, the environment and economy, linking ‘real life’ with their learning
- Be aware of and recognise their own learning needs and be involved in planning future steps
- Develop a sense of self-esteem: be well balanced and healthy individuals
- Have a desire to think about and help local and global communities
At Millfields our curriculum for Year 1 to Year 6 is divided into four ‘topics’ across the year, to ensure balanced coverage of knowledge and skills. Each quarter has a specific subject focus, which is the same across the school. This enables pupils to become immersed in the subject. During each quarter, there is a strong focus on the identified subject, however, other subjects are also taught throughout the unit of work. Within our curriculum plan, learning objectives from the National Curriculum and key skills are identified for each topic to ensure complete coverage of these and clear progression throughout the school.
Our EYFS curriculum is divided into slightly shorter half termly units to help maintain the children’s interest and focus during each topic. Sometimes these units are broken down into even shorter blocks of work. As the curriculum for this class is divided into a different number of units, there is not a specific subject focus in the same way that there is for the rest of the school.
Across the whole school, each unit of work has an overall theme linked to the focus subject, as well as a ‘big question’ to be answered and 3 to 4 key concepts to be explored; our school values are included within these concepts in the majority of quarters. Children and teachers explore the big question for each unit throughout the quarter, discussing their thoughts on this at the end of the unit of work.
Our Curriculum Overview identifies which topics are taught to which year groups and in which quarters. Over each academic year, each child has the opportunity to experience the full range of National Curriculum subjects. In developing our curriculum, areas of learning from different curriculum subjects which contain similar themes or links have been identified and placed together. This allows for a more creative and cross curricular approach to learning and encourages children to apply skills in a variety of ways, as well as make links in their learning. Medium term plans ensure coverage of the curriculum. These include learning intentions and activities identified by Subject Leaders. The learning objectives and skills identified on the curriculum plans must be covered but are a minimum expectation. Providing the identified knowledge and skills identified are covered, teachers and children are encouraged to take their learning in other directions if it helps them to answer their question and deepen their understanding of the key concepts and global issues.
We also offer weekly Forest School Sessions for our pupils at Millfields. Each class will receive at least a half term of these sessions, while our Reception Class benefit from these sessions throughout the year. These sessions are provided in addition to our core curriculum and provide pupils with the opportunities to take risks, make choices and initiate their own learning, as well as develop a range of important life skills. Children are also encouraged to understand, appreciate and care for the natural environment. Links are made to our core curriculum themes, where appropriate.
In addition to activities offered through our curriculum, we also offer a range of extra-curricular activities which take place during lunchtimes or after school. These change termly so that a range of activities can be provided throughout the year.
Our curriculum will enable our pupils to recall and apply knowledge and skills that they have learnt with confidence, year on year, as well enabling them to develop essential life skills which will support them in their future lives and careers. In addition to this, our curriculum will provide our children with a wider view of the world and global issues to help them better understand and make a difference in the world in which they will live as adults.
The impact of our curriculum is measured in a variety of ways, including assessment of children’s knowledge and skills, alongside regular monitoring of teaching and learning.
- Triangulation of a range of evidence, including pupils’ work, pupil discussions, feedback and observations of lessons
- Start and end of unit assessments which show progress made
- End of year or key stage outcomes
- Termly evaluations of the curriculum made by staff and pupils
- Pupils’ work in books, on displays and in end of unit outcomes
- Assessments made by teachers against skills/knowledge covered each term and NFER tests for English and maths
- Attendance and behaviour data and pupils’ attitudes to learning