This page contains details of our school’s curriculum. Parents can find out more information by asking at the school.
Information about the National Primary curriculum can be found here.
The main reading scheme that we use at St Christopher’s is the Oxford Reading Tree. This is supplemented with books from a variety of other reading schemes which have been banded into coloured bands. Children choose ‘home-readers’ from within their coloured band until the class teacher feels that their reading has progressed sufficiently well to move up to the next level of coloured band.
Guided Reading: At St Christopher’s Church of England Primary School the goal of guided reading is to enable learners to become independent, able readers, who understand and appreciate texts on their own. Guided reading takes place in a small group with a teacher and focuses on developing pupil’s ability to become independent readers, thinkers and learners. The teacher acts as the expert who guides the children through the text, providing signposts to the most important and most helpful features of the textual landscape. Pupils are grouped by reading level into groups of up to six children.
Shared Reading: Regular shared reading opportunities are planned for from Foundation Stage upwards. The goal of shared reading is to help pupils extend their understanding of themselves as effective text followers and interpreters. During shared reading, teachers and pupils participate in collaborative discussions. Every class should have a class novel, preferably linked to topic work or a significant author, and opportunities for engaging in whole class shared reading are provided for as often as possible. The school also has links with the local library and classes are timetabled to visit once a term. During these sessions, teachers generally choose a story to share with the class or teach the pupils how to use the library for research purposes. Every child has the opportunity to borrow a book which will remain in a central area in the classroom.
Assessment: Target tracker objectives are used as an assessment vehicle within guided reading and 1:1 reading sessions. Children are provided with bookmark style target cards in KS1 and KS2 and learning objectives, where appropriate, will be linked to these during guided reading sessions. Effective feedback is provided to the children in the group and children are clear about the next steps needed to improve their reading.
Modern Foreign language (MFL)
The Primary National curriculum states that an ancient or modern foreign language should be taught at Key Stage 2. At St Christopher’s we have chosen to teach Spanish. We also offer an after-school club in Latin.
Phonics/ Spellings: Phonics and spelling lessons are planned for using the DfES publication Letters and Sounds and the ‘No-Nonsense Spelling’ scheme. In Foundation Stage, phonics lessons take place daily with related follow up activities accessible to the pupils. Phonics is set for across Years 1 to 3 according to ability and sessions are timetabled for 15 minutes daily. In KS2, spellings work is carried out for 15 minutes each day although some children may still receive phonics teaching as required. Targeted children, receive personalised intervention support such as Direct Phonics teaching or precision teaching programmes such as Toe by Toe.
Although PSHE (Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education) is not a statutory subject within the national curriculum, at St Christopher’s we feel it is vital to the development and education of the whole child.
PSHE is taught using ‘Jigsaw’ which brings together PSHE Education, emotional literacy, social skills and spiritual development in a comprehensive scheme of learning. Teaching strategies are varied and are mindful of preferred learning styles and the need for differentiation. Jigsaw is designed as a whole school approach, with all year groups working on the same theme (Puzzle) at the same time.
There are six Puzzles in Jigsaw that are designed to progress in sequence from September to July. Each Puzzle has six Pieces (lessons) which work towards an ‘end product’.
Each Piece has two Learning Intentions: one is based on specific PSHE learning (covering the non-statutory national framework for PSHE Education but enhanced to address children’s needs today); and one is based on emotional literacy and social skills (covering the SEAL learning intentions but also enhanced). The enhancements mean that Jigsaw is relevant to children living in today’s world as it helps them understand and be equipped to cope with issues like body image, cyber and homophobic bullying, and internet safety.
Every Piece (lesson) contributes to at least one of these aspects of children’s development. This is mapped on each Piece and balanced across each year group.
At St Christopher’s, we use the Target Tracker system to track the progress our children make across the year. Further information about assessment and Target Tracker can be found here: St Christopher’s Assessment