Juniper Hill School Curriculum Statement
Our curriculum, based on the expectations of the revised National Curriculum and the success of our previous Curriculum, was launched in September 2014. It has been designed to embrace the objectives of the current National Curriculum but also allows our pupils to study through a series of exciting topics that lend themselves particularly to our school and locality or the children’s interests wherever possible.
Through our previous curriculum, we found that the children are enthusiastic and keen to learn particularly when given the opportunity to explore and appreciate how many of the subjects are related, through a thematic approach and within a meaningful context. We have attempted to embrace these same opportunities in our new curriculum.
Each term we run themed days, with visitors to school, day trips and residential visits away. It is our aim to foster a love of learning in the children and to provide opportunities for them to all be inspired and achieve.
The Teaching of English and Reading
The basic skills of language development are speaking, listening, reading and writing. In our Reception class children are provided with plenty of opportunities to speak and listen through role play, storytelling and drama activities. Children are encouraged to hear sounds in the environment and in words; using a phonic approach to reading and spelling. Books are shared as a whole class, encouraging pupils to discuss characters, setting, and features of the text and vocabulary. Pre-writing skills are practised starting with mark making and patterns, leading to basic letter formation and handwriting. In our Reception class and Key Stage 1, children learn to read and spell through daily synthetic phonic lessons.
Our reading scheme is based around Ruth Miskin, Oxford Reading Tree and Kingscourt scheme books. Children are encouraged to regularly borrow books from our school library or from their ‘class library’ to ensure they read a wide selection of texts.Throughout the school, comprehension skills are taught through ‘Guided Reading’ sessions and through teacher-led activities in literacy lessons.
Teachers plan lessons following guidance from the English objectives in the National Curriculum, however they seek opportunities to link texts, objectives and tasks to the theme or topic being taught that term. The school runs a number of literacy interventions for those children who need extra support with their language development. We also support pupils who exceed national expectations with focussed group work in class and additional sessions where appropriate.
The Teaching of Mathematics
As a school, we plan using objectives in line with the National Curriculum requirements for the teaching of mathematics. This classwork is reinforced through homework activities. We also teach and test discrete times tables knowledge with our ‘Cracking Times Tables’ programme from Year 2 onwards. In our Reception class children are provided with plenty of practical opportunities to explore number, shape, space and measurement through both adult directed tasks and independent activity. Topics within mathematics at KS1 include Number (place value, addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and fractions), Measurement (length, mass, capacity, time and money) Geometry (properties of shape, position and direction). These topics are continued in KS2 with the addition of Statistics, Fractions (including decimals and percentages) and Ratio & Proportion. The school runs a number of maths interventions for those children who need extra support with their mathematical development. We also support pupils who exceed national expectations with focussed group work in class and small class lessons for able pupils once a week.