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At Heronswood we believe in providing children with a broad, balanced curriculum which both provides first hand experiences and builds on children’s prior knowledge. Through our creative curriculum we develop children’s abilities, interests and potential in order to prepare them for the next stage in their lives. We use a broad range of teaching strategies that take into account the ways in which children learn in order to foster engagement, motivation and creativity.

The curriculum at Heronswood Primary is underpinned by the National Curriculum (2014) and we enhance this further with carefully planned opportunities that make up the wider school curriculum.

Learning is always exciting and in a meaningful context for children, with a clear purpose and clear learning intention. Where commonality exists between subjects and skills, learning is linked and lessons are taught using a cross-curricular approach – topic work. Where this is not achievable, subjects are taught discretely. The rehearsal and application of basic skills learned in the core curriculum (reading, writing and maths) is a driver for the entire curriculum as we help the children to move their understanding from surface to deep.
We place a strong emphasis on the development of the basic skills necessary to be confident, independent learners and successful adults. Through our curriculum our children develop a strong sense of moral purpose in addition to respect and understanding of people who have different characteristics to themselves; whether that be age, disability, gender or race. A rigorous, well planned curriculum, delivered by excellent staff in an ethos of care, love and support enables our pupils to be well rounded, empathetic young people who have a thirst for learning and respect for all around them.

Through our curriculum we aim to:

- Inspire children to develop a love of learning
- Embed key skills to prepare children for further learning, in high school and into adulthood
- Nurture confident and independent learners who take ownership of their learning
- Take learning beyond the classroom with direct experiences at the heart
- Develop children to become reflective learners who have a sense of responsibility for their own learning
- Build confidence and self-motivation within our children
- Grow children who understand the importance of perseverance, resilience and tolerance
- Enable children to use their acquired skills and knowledge to observe, question, think and reflect
- Learn to value others, their views, cultures and beliefs
- Use a thematic approach and a range of resources
- Improve standards through quality first teaching and learning

A Thematic Approach
Each phase follows a theme per half term/term which has a focus subject base e.g. English, History or Geography and also encompasses other areas to enable children to see connections between their learning.

Direct Experience Placed at the Centre
We believe that direct experience is essential for children to put their learning in context and develop skills for life. Direct experiences may include visitors, local walks or a visit to a place linked to the theme. Previous experiences have included trips to museums, churches, castles and farms. We are very lucky to have a varied local environment and we are often able to use outdoor learning to enhance the children's learning. We aim to make outcomes of topics meaningful and purposeful. Recent examples include a Dragon Graduation Day and Castle Banquet.

National Curriculum coverage
We approach the introduction of a new National Curriculum in September 2014 as an opportunity to develop the curriculum to suit the needs of our pupils. We have been reviewing our provision to incorporate the National Curriculum and will do so again at the end of the academic year. We aim to be innovative in our practice to provide contextualised, stimulating learning opportunities which allow all our children to access learning.

Key Skills
We want children to become:
- Team Workers, Resilient Learners, Reflective Learners, Independent Enquirers, Creative Thinkers, Risk Takers, Good Communicators

Using a variety of resources/Quality first teaching and learning
Planning includes a range of resources that are used for each theme. These may include artefacts, imaginary experiences, outdoor learning, books and ICT tools. We encourage children to research using a range of sources and chose different ways to present their learning. Teachers are encouraged to use a range of teaching approaches and try new ideas.
Quality first teaching and learning means that all children have the highest possible standard of teaching and their learning is valued, evaluated and used to enable excellent progress.

Improved standards/Children taking ownership of their learning
We promote children taking ownership of their learning in a number of ways. We regularly monitor our themes and begin each one by asking the children what they would like to find out and how they could do this. Displays in classrooms and around the school show examples of high quality work and are engaging. Our Learning Log approach to homework means that children are able to extend their learning with family at home and this gives them a chance to talk about how learning relates to life outside school.

We want all of our children to become good learners and use the following principles in all classes:

Preparing children for the next stage in their education and their future lives
We work closely with the local schools to ensure that children have a smooth transition to their next stage in education. We believe that our approach of using the National Curriculum together with Key Skills enables our children to become confident, independent learners and this will stay with them for the rest of their lives.

Equal Opportunities:
The school ethos recognises that equal opportunities encompass gender, nationality, ethnicity, culture, disability, age, sexuality, religion and special educational needs. Children are all treated fairly and are given equal opportunity to take part in activities across the whole school curriculum. Equality is an important part of the planning and teaching of all lessons. When planning work for children with special educational needs we give due regard to information and targets contained in the children’s Individual Education Plan We have high expectations of all children and we believe that the principles of equality underpin work and life through the school.

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