Enrichment and rigour in acquiring key skills are the core principles underpinning our curriculum.
Foundation Stage ie Nursery and Reception classes, are delivering the Foundation Stage Early Years’ Curriculum which was introduced nationally in September 2012. It has been carefully constructed to ensure that it is age appropriate and offers the children meaningful opportunities to develop holistically. The full document can be found here.
The following is an excerpt:
‘There are seven areas of learning and development that must shape educational programmes in early years settings. All areas of learning and development are important and inter-connected. Three areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive.
These three areas, the prime areas, are:
communication and language;
physical development; and
personal, social and emotional development.
Providers must also support children in four specific areas, through which the three prime areas are strengthened and applied.
The specific areas are:
understanding the world; and
expressive arts and design.
‘In planning and guiding children’s activities, practitioners must reflect on the different ways that children learn and reflect these in their practice. Three characteristics of effective teaching and learning are:
playing and exploring -children investigate and experience things, and ‘have a go’;
active learning -children concentrate and keep on trying if they encounter difficulties, and enjoy achievements; and
creating and thinking critically – children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things.’ Statutory Framework for the Early Years Foundation Stage.
Key Stage 1 i.e. Years 1 and 2, are delivering the National Curriculum via a curriculum called Cornerstones.
What is the Cornerstones Curriculum?
The Cornerstones Curriculum is a creative and thematic approach to learning that is mapped to the 2014 Primary National Curriculum to ensure comprehensive coverage of national expectations. The curriculum will be delivered through Imaginative Learning Projects (ILPs) which will provide a rich menu of exciting and motivating learning activities that make creative links between all aspects of our children’s learning.
We believe children learn better when they are encouraged to use their imagination and apply their learning to engaging contexts. Our new curriculum will provide lots of learning challenges throughout the academic year that will require children to solve problems, apply themselves creatively and express their knowledge and understanding effectively across the curriculum.
Cornerstones also provide a rigorous essential skills framework that outlines the end of year expectations in all subjects. These essential skills are tied to activities and are age related so that staff can track children’s progress and identify their individual learning needs.
How it Works?
Children will progress through four stages of learning in each ILP – Engage, Develop, Innovate and Express.
To find out more about these stages please click here to access the Cornerstones website.