St. John’s CE Primary Curriculum
At St John's CE Primary School we follow the National Curriculum throughout the school in EYFS, KS1 and KS2. We firmly believe that the School Curriculum should be broad and balanced, offering children the opportunity to achieve success in many different areas. We believe in preparing our pupils for life beyond St John's so our school curriculum aims to cover the children's academic needs and also their physical, moral, cultural, spiritual and social needs. We want our children to be successful and happy young people who are 'Secondary ready' and embrace life in modern Britain.
Developing every child’s literacy and numeracy is central to our planning and teaching. Each day we focus specifically on these vital basic skills in our basic skills sessions. Then we apply these skills in our cross curricular themed learning throughout the rest of the day. Our cross-curricular approach to learning has a strong creative focus based on key themes, helping children to learn in meaningful contexts, independently and collaboratively. We encourage creativity and support the children in expressing themselves, in all areas of the curriculum, to develop their confidence and foster cooperation. Our curriculum is designed in terms of experiences and activities that will promote the continued growth of each child through the acquisition of knowledge, concepts and key skills.
Each class studies a different theme in depth each half term, leading to approximately 6 themes per school year. The topic overviews can be found on each of the class pages.
National Curriculum Subject Areas
We endeavour to ensure that children learn to listen effectively and speak clearly and accurately. We use a range of strategies to teach reading. We teach phonics and word decoding skills to help children become fluent readers and successful writers.
Discrete daily phonics sessions are taught throughout EYFS and KS1.
At St John’s we actively engage in different types of reading, shared, guided and individual reading take place throughout the school.
Phonics, are taught using the Letters and Sounds scheme while making use of a variety of interactive programs.
We teach Reading through primarily the Oxford Reading Tree scheme together with other schemes. As children progress through the school, they use a variety of resources to engage and inspire them to develop a love of reading and an appreciation of quality children’s literature. Guided reading builds on this and takes place in every class at least once a week.
All children have regular access to our school library where they can access and borrow from a good selection of both fiction and non-fiction books.
Spelling is taught through the No Nonsense Spelling scheme at both KS1 and KS2.
We use a variety of approaches to enable children to become confident, independent writers.
We teach maths through the seven different strands from: counting and understanding number, knowing and using number facts, calculating, understanding shape, measures, handling data and using and applying. We then apply these taught skills either through our themed learning or through problem solving and reasoning challenges. There are instances however, where discrete maths teaching takes place.
We have introduced Numicom, a unique maths toolkit that’s carefully crafted to help inspire a genuine love of maths and to help every child master the national curriculum.
We teach the Science curriculum through our themed learning. As part of this we teach children to observe closely and to safely develop their experimental and investigational skills.
Design and Technology
This area of the curriculum gives the children opportunity to design and make artefacts, systems and environments.
Plans, maps, visits and various learning activities are used to enable children to acquire geographical skills. Children are asked to consider ways in which we should look after the environment.
A range of different sources are used for the children to develop their historical enquiry skills. Through various history topics the children are able to understand chronology.
MFL (Modern Foreign Languages)
German is taught to all the children in KS2 weekly by the Headteacher. German is also incorporated into the every day life of the school such as greetings and taking the register in German. French is taught to the children in KS1.
The children experience a wide variety of art activities. They learn how to observe, draw, paint and model with increasing skill, knowledge and understanding.
Music plays a full part in the life of our school. We are very proud of our orchestra which performs at all services as well as other events throughout the year. Children are given opportunities to sing, listen to music and begin to learn how to make their own music. All classes in KS2 have a weekly lesson with a specialist music teacher, Mr West. Children in Nursery and Reception enjoy a weekly session with Music and Rhyme.
The children learn the importance of strenuous activity in developing strong healthy bodies and how to work together in pairs, small groups and teams. Children take part in a range of activities including, games, dance and gym. Year Three take part in swimming lessons throughout the Spring and Summer terms. We are fortunate to be on the doorstep of Keele University and we are able to make use of their facilities to take part in such sports as beach volleyball and bouldering.
P.H.S.E (Personal Health and Social Education)
Children are taught personal and social skills such as independence, confidence, how to keep themselves safe and healthy and respect for themselves and others. We also teach SEAL (Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning) throughout the school.
At St John’s we follow the Staffordshire Diocese Curriculum. We also make use of the scheme of work Primary RE. The parish clergy are actively involved in the life of the school, leading some Acts of Worship and working with staff in R.E lessons. Collective Worships take place each day for all children with some being prepared by the children themselves. R.E forms a central and integral part of the life of St John’s.
Curriculum linked Educational visits are arranged throughout the year that build on the themes children are learning within school.
Extra Curricular Activities
At St John’s we believe in educating the whole child, one way we achieve this is by offering a wide variety of extracurricular activities and clubs. Activities run during lunchtimes and after school. Some of the current clubs on offer are cooking, French, multi-skills, dodgeball and a running club.