Wallace Fields Infant School & Nursery ‘E’ Curriculum
In September 2018 we began planning changes to the way we taught and delivered our curriculum, introducing the Wallace Fields Infant School & Nursery ‘E-Curriculum’. Our rich and varied curriculum provides opportunities to develop skills to be successful in the future, including English (language, reading and writing), Maths, Science and Computing as well as History, Geography, Art, Design Technology, Religious Education, Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE), PE and Music. We weave Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural (SMSC) development through our whole curriculum. The foundation of our approach is to maintain Excellence in all areas while ensuring that our children receive high quality learning opportunities and experiences (Entitlement) both within and beyond the classroom which nurtures their individual talents (Enrichment).
Some of the key features of our approach are:
- Whole school topics over a whole term – Each topic is followed by the whole school and teachers plan using our foundation subject knowledge and progression grids to ensure that pitch for the year group and appropriate differentiation and challenge. Carrying over to a second half term, the topic takes a slightly new direction to develop a real depth of knowledge and language.
- Immersive learning environment – classrooms are styled around the topic providing inspiring reading and roleplay areas and high quality displays of children’s learning. This creates a ‘wow’ moment when children begin each topic.
- ‘Task time’ in Key Stage 1, similar to the style of learning in the Early Years. Children’s independence and resilience is increasing. Children move around the room to complete a variety of tasks, including some ‘must-do’ tasks. The tasks change regularly. As well as teaching, the class teacher’s role is facilitator and ‘quality control’. Tasks usually include a challenge activity. Over the course of the topic, task time provides opportunities for learning to ‘stick’ through tasks which ensure children recall and apply the knowledge and skills they have gained.
- Roleplay and drama – encouraged in every year group so children get to develop their ideas and vocabulary creatively. Talk is a focus at all times.
- First hand experiences – events or surprises in class along with trips, visitors and experts to inspire children and develop their knowledge and skills.
- Exciting contexts and topic work is fully integrated with English (reading and writing) – We aim to think outside the box with each topic. Children are desperate to write about what they are learning and doing!
- High quality texts – new texts have been selected related to the topic. Our aim is to inspire a love of reading.
- Learning Journals – children throughout the school have all their learning in one journal, and in KS1 (Year 1 and 2) the children are responsible for mounting and presenting all of their own work.
- Support from teaching specialists – high quality art outcomes and displays around the school. Teachers are now confident in delivering art lessons and our children produce stunning works of art for the journals. Our music curriculum enables us to deliver amazing performances to parents and allow children to explore their topic through music.
- Assessment – ‘in the moment’ comments on stickers about character (i.e. you showed excellent team work to complete this task) or to move learning forward. End of journal evaluation by the child, teacher and family members (journals go home for two weeks to share with family members).
- Home Learning tasks – family learning opportunities with open ended tasks to complement classroom learning.
The school makes considerable efforts to ensure children have exposure to a wide experience in their local community through, for example, sporting events, festivals, trips and through visiting speakers from other religious denominations and groups. Our strong-rooted, values based understanding gives us an excellent platform for embracing difference.
We have developed a set of knowledge and skills progression sheets which outline the key knowledge and skills which children should have at the end of each year. These track back to Nursery up to the end of Key Stage 1.
In October 2019 we adopted the Power Maths scheme as our approach for teaching maths mastery in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2. Power Maths teaches and challenges children to use calculation methods in the most appropriate, efficient way and develop their problem solving and reasoning skills. Our intent is to spark curiosity, engage reasoning, secure understanding and deepen learning for all.
Children in our Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 classes record their learning in their ‘Learning Journals’. These comprehensive bodies of work are for the children to keep at the end of each year and are a celebration of the learning and achievements each term.