Curriculum by Year/Subject
At Crookhill Primary School we offer an exciting, broad, balanced and interesting curriculum. Our curriculum focuses on developing basic skills and has been developed so that it is relevant to the needs of Crookhill children. The curriculum for pupils in Y1-Y6 meets the requirements of The National Curriculum 2014 and promotes the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils and of society. We aim to ensure that our pupils are prepared for life in the 21st century and the opportunities, responsibilities and expereinces they will face in later life. We pride ourselves on enriching the curriculum with creative learning experiences, visits and visitors.
We have used the Essentials Curriculum as the basis for organising the curriculum and topics for each year group. Please see the Essentials Document within this section for further information) We organise our curriculum into topics or themes every term so that children have an interesting context for their learning.
Nursery and Reception education is called the ‘Foundation Stage’. The Early Years curriculum prepares children for the National Curriculum which they will follow when they reach Year 1.
Much of the learning in the Foundation Stage takes place through well planned play opportunities, which is the key way in which children learn with enjoyment and challenge. The children are assessed throughout the year against the Early Learning Goals.
There are 7 areas of learning and development, all areas of learning and development are equally important and inter-connected.
The 7 areas of learning and development are as follows:
• Communication and Language
• Physical Development
• Personal, Social and Emotional Development
• Understanding the World
• Expressive Arts and Design
Within Literacy, Reception children are taught phonics, following the programmes Letters & Sounds and LCP.
THE NATIONAL CURRICULUM 2014 - Key Stage 1 and 2
The Curriculum 2014 consists of core subjects (English, Mathematics and Science) and non-core subjects (Science, Design & Technology, Computing, History, Geography, Art & Design, Music and Physical Education, Modern Foreign Languages). In addition to this there is a legal requirement that Religious Education is taught. We follow the Gateshead locally agreed syllabus. The National Curriculum applies to all pupils of compulsory school age in maintained schools.
Personal, Social and Health Education
At Crookhill, we value the role personal, social and health education plays in developing responsible and caring citizens and we have our own curriculum which has been developed with the specific needs of our children in mind. Each term is organised into whole school themes which feed into lessons and assemblies. In the Autumn Term, the focus is 'Healthy Bodies, Healthy Minds', in the Spring it is 'Friendships, feelings and Relationships' and in the Summer we focus on 'Our World, Our Money'.
The teaching of English falls into three inter-related categories:
- Spoken Language
- Reading (word reading & comprehension)
- Writing (transcription & composition)
English is taught through a daily dedicated lesson. Reading skills are developed by daily phonic sessions in Reception and Key Stage 1 and regular reading opportunities. Crookhill follows the phonic programmes, Letters & Sounds. Daily guided reading sessions take place from Reception/Year 1 through to Year 6 where children learn how to apply and develop their reading and comprehension skills. Through English activities pupils learn to speak confidently, listen and discuss ideas. They begin to read and write independently and with enthusiasm. They read a range of texts and respond to different layers of meaning in them. They explore the use of language in different types of texts and how language works. Spelling, vocabulary and grammar is taught discretely and within context to ensure that children learn and apply skills.
Maths is taught daily in all classes. Lessons promote the development of the use of calculation strategies and mathematical language. Mathematics is divided into:
- Number - Number and place value, addition and subtraction, multiplication and division, fractions
- Geometry - properties of shapes, position and direction
Children are given the opportunity to apply mathematical skills through practical activities and problem solving.
The science curriculum is based on the National Curriculum. Our aim is to offer children opportunities to develop scientific knowledge and understanding and to investigate and explore scientific phenomena. Our science curriculum focuses on practical and experimental work and on developing observational skills, inquiring minds and problem solving.
Each year group has the opportunity to work scientifically and has a specific programme of study which develops knowledge and understanding of biology, physics and chemistry.
Through the curriculum, children will develop their undertsanding of computer science and have opportunities to apply computing skills. Children will also be able to develop and evaluate programs, and will have the opportunity to use a range of information and communication technologies.
At Crookhill we have a newly updated Computing suite with computers which all have filtered internet access. Every class has a dedicated ICT session every week where they learn Computing skills. ICT is a key feature of our curriculum and is used to enhance the learning of other subjects. Each classroom has its own data projector, visualiser and interactive whiteboard to enhance teaching and learning experiences in the classroom. Children have regular access to a range of software as well as web-based materials. There is also a set of ipads and mini laptops for use in school.
Teaching history provides opportunities to learn about the past, helping children to gain knowledge of cultural heritage and introducing skills of historical enquiry.
Children learn how to use geographical skills such as following directions, observing and asking questions, describing and recording what they have seen, and using and making maps. They study the local area and compare this with different places including other areas of Britain and the rest of the world.
Children are given a wide variety of experiences of using different art media for different effects. They learn about different styles of art and artists and learn to express themselves creatively.
Design & Technology (DT)
Children work with a range of materials on topics that involve them in designing, making and evaluating their product. Pupils are taught how to use tools safely and how to select appropriate materials for the task they are completing.
Music and Drama
Music and Drama are important at Crookhill. In addition to the music curriculum, specialists visit school to teach specific music skills. Drama is used to develop curriculum areas and children are involved in various performances such as Harvest Festival, Christmas productions and class assemblies.
Religious Education (RE), Collective Worship and Assemblies
At Crookhill Community Primary School Religious Education is taught to all children, unless parents have exercised their right to withdraw their child. The School is not affiliated to any particular denomination but follows the agreed RE syllabus recommended by Gateshead LA.
We encourage parents to let their children participate in all of RE because:
- Religious Education is about ‘education’ not ‘nurturing’ children in a faith
- Our children are the citizens of tomorrow. They will have increasing mobility within Britain and the world at large, meeting people who lead different lifestyles and who hold different beliefs.
We aim to:
- Enable children to realise that religious beliefs and practices are an interpretation of humankind’s attempts to find meaning and purpose in life
- Teach children about Christianity and other principal religions represented in Britain, and how religion affects societies and cultures
- Develop in children the ability to make reasoned and informed judgements about religious and moral issues, with reference to principal religions represented in Great Britain.
- Encourage positive values of truthfulness, honesty, reliability, initiative, self-discipline, friendship and tolerance of others.
Collective Worship takes place daily and is planned around a weekly theme. This is in accordance with the requirements of the Education Reform Act.
Every Friday the children attend Achievers’ Assembly where good work and behaviour are celebrated and children receive housepoints and Star of the Week awards.
RE is provided for all pupils and is inclusive and broad minded. Any parent wishing to exercise their right to withdraw their child from Collective Worship or any elements of RE, should contact the Head Teacher to make an appointment to discuss alternative provision.
Personal, Social, Health, Education and Citizenship (PSHEC)
Children are given experiences that enable them to develop as individuals, appreciate social issues and take responsibility for themselves and others. They learn how to live a healthy life and develop the ability to make sensible choices.
This is taught as part of a ‘whole approach’ to Health Education. Parents are informed of any planned activity, which involves sex education, and have a right to remove their child from any session that they are not happy with, except those elements taught as part of the National Curriculum for Science.
There are times when aspects of health education occur naturally throughout the year within the curriculum. Questions that arise are answered in a simple and straightforward manner that is appropriate to the age and maturity of the children. In Year 6, the school nurse delivers a Puberty/Growing Up Talk’
Physical Education (PE)
It is our intention to promote:
- enjoyment through physical education
- physical development as a complement to academic development
- a healthy lifestyle and a continuing involvement in physical activity
Children have at least 2 weekly PE lessons where they will learn gymnastics, dance, games, and athletic skills. Swimming is taught in Year 4. Children in Year 6 visit Whickham Thorns have a 3 day residential at Gibside Estate.
Extra Curricular Activities
The school supports the important aspect that out-of-school activities have in a child’s development.
We offer weekly clubs that cover a range of activities for example:
Gardening club, dance, choir, ‘Godly Play’ – exploring Bible stories,sewing, football, sports activities and art
We also encourage extra events such as shows, social events and welcome many visitors into the school to support our curriculum.
School Educational Visits
Educational visits play an important part in a child’s development at school and enhance learning experiences. Parents are asked to make a contribution towards the cost of visits made in school time.
All pupils have access to equal opportunities based upon the LA’s Equality Policy for which has been adopted by the Governing Body. The school is fully committed to an education, which does not discriminate on any basis and values all pupils as individuals in their own right.