Nanpean’s Curriculum Statement
At Nanpean Community Primary School (NCPS), we aim to provide a positive learning experience for every child, through an exciting and engaging curriculum which will inspire children, foster their independence and develop resilience, linked to our vision statement ‘Nurturing Children’s Passion to Succeed’. We believe that our children have the right to flourish, recognise their own greatness and continually develop as individuals, and feel that this will be achieved through delivering excellent teaching and learning which ensures children engage in a range of learning experiences which are challenging, relevant (to their lives) and meaningful. Our ultimate aim is that this enriches the educational experiences of all children in our school to ensure that they are confident, happy and resilient learners who develop knowledge and skills as well as a lifelong love for learning, so that they have a better understanding of themselves and the complex world we live in.
Nanpean Community Primary School (NCPS) is a small school in rural Cornwall, and our Curriculum links to this. Our unique location, within the China Clay area, has enabled us to, where appropriate, focus on themes that are of local, national and global value to the children, while also allowing us to compare our community with others in the United Kingdom and those across the world.
At NCPS, we learn together that there are different pathways to success, and we develop perseverance and resilience by overcoming barriers. We understand that finding work challenging and making mistakes is part of the learning process, and we encourage the children to embrace challenge and learn from adversity.
We set high expectations for each pupil, all of whom benefit from access to a high quality curriculum and high quality teaching that focuses on inclusive practice and breaks down barriers to learning. For the majority of pupils this is achieved through personalisation and differentiation: we aim to deepen understanding of our higher attaining pupils by planning suitable learning challenges for them; but we also plan carefully for the needs of pupils who experience barriers to learning, ensuring that they receive equitable access to our full, ambitious curriculum offer. For some of our pupils who have Special Educational Needs or disabilities (SEND), provision that is different from, and additional to, their peers is put in place. Our SEND Code of Practice, available on our website, includes various approaches. We also work together with parents to ensure the best outcomes for our pupils.
Our definition of “The Curriculum”
At NCPS, we define “The Curriculum” in the broadest sense of the word. To us, it is not simply the academic subjects on the school timetable, but the whole experience of education. In this sense, our curriculum comprises everything that our children do, see, hear or feel in our school, both planned and unplanned.
Our Curriculum Offer
To meet the expectations arising from our definition of the curriculum, we recognise that our curriculum offer is comprised of four different parts.
We ensure the delivery of the National and Basic Curriculums, in which we cover the principles and full scope of the subject specific programmes of study prescribed to schools nationally. Within these, it is our belief that the knowledge, concepts and overarching ideas of individual subjects are an entitlement for every child.
We are committed to meeting the requirements of the Primary National Curriculum (https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/national-curriculum-in-england-primary-curriculum) in a fun, challenging and holistic way, where learning is connected by careful planning. The Curriculum at NCPS is now delivered through termly questions, which foster curiosity and ensure children are enthused and interested, and these initial questions are the basis for learning in that term across a variety of subjects. The learning at the end of each term is shared within our school community as part of our ‘Showcase Week’, and our children love working towards this and producing work which they are proud to share with their parents and the school community.
Our Local Curriculum offers opportunities for learning beyond the National Curriculum programmes of study. We make connections with our local area, including the natural environment, business and community links, to further enrich our overall curriculum offer. This will ensure that the context of the school and the surrounding area, as well as broader factors such as Cornish heritage, play a major part in the children’s learning.
We are also developing a standard pupil offer of experiences and opportunities per academic year, and this is as follows:
- 2 x Education Visits (external of the school grounds)
- 1 x Educational Visitor (to school)
- Outdoor Learning opportunities (which link to other subjects). These predominantly use our school grounds but could also include the local area / community
- Community Visitors linked to Arts, Culture and Sport (this includes specialist Sports Coaches and visits from Artists / Musicians or Specialist Teachers)
- Residential Visit (Year 5 and 6)
- Sleepover at School to prepare for the Residential (Year 4)
Each term, children in each class also focus on an Aspiration through being immersed in a career job role relevant to their learning. We are currently building a bank of resources for this and are part of a Primary Aspirations Pilot Project.
Finally, we recognise the important contribution of the Hidden Curriculum in our overall offer, enabling us to fully deliver on our intended principles and purposes of education. The Hidden Curriculum comprises those elements of learning and development that children benefit from simply through ‘being’ at our school, which may be unplanned and are not explicitly taught within lessons. This includes learning through interactions with each other, the staff and how we conduct ourselves around the school, showing the behaviours and values we aim to model across our school community.
Our Curriculum Approach
It is widely recognised that there are three approaches to Curriculum design. At Nanpean School, we have designed our Curriculum around a Knowledge-engaged approach. This approach maintains knowledge as a focus, believing that knowledge underpins and enables the application of skills. This approach also has a stronger emphasis on cross-curricular teaching where children are able to make links between their learning in different subject areas so as to make this more relevant. Subject Leaders have planned appropriate teaching and learning content in relation to this. Our Knowledge-engaged statement is below:
A Knowledge-engaged approach intends to make links between subjects within the Curriculum, where appropriate, so that learning becomes relevant, meaningful and contextual to the children through the collation of knowledge and facts that link to, and underpin, skill development.
Knowledge is a focus at Nanpean School and we use Knowledge Organisers which cover content and key facts and skills for each subject. These enable children to progressively build on their learning, cumulatively developing knowledge and skills. Our Knowledge-engaged Curriculum:
- Fosters links between learning and the community and local area;
- is Aspirational through immersing children in knowledge and experience of Careers for their future;
- Builds and promotes a lifelong love of learning through the application of knowledge and skills, so that they are ready for the next steps of their education and life.
Curriculum Intent is about curriculum design, the emphasis being on how effectively schools provide a broad and balanced curriculum for all pupils, opening rather than closing doors to future success. Our intention is that the Curriculum at Nanpean, following the Knowledge-engaged approach, will:
- Ensure rich, memorable and varied opportunities and experiences that facilitate learning through the building of knowledge and skills, and prepare children for life through our motto ‘Nurturing Children’s Passion to Succeed’.
- Develop a love of reading, and deepen sense of number and related reasoning and problem solving;
- Be taught with the consideration of the needs of all learners;
- Develop the characteristics of effective learning beyond the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) through to Upper Key Stage 2 (UKS2).
We also believe that lessons should be connected, where appropriate, so that children can engage in deep and meaningful learning over time.
The subjects which comprise our Curriculum are:
Based on our knowledge of the National Curriculum (2014), we have broken down the programmes of study into a series of knowledge and skills, and we intend to cover the fundamental concepts of each National Curriculum Subject. Each Subject has a Subject Leader who has an overview of planning for that area of learning across the school. Each Subject Leader has considered how each skill and knowledge statement connects and builds over time.
Curriculum Intent at Nanpean School: What specific knowledge and skills do we want the pupils to learn?
Every term, the ‘Intent’ of the learning is considered by class teachers and relayed to children and parents through an intriguing question, used to engage and motivate the children.
Knowledge Organisers are being developed further and these contain KIRFS (Key Instant Recall Facts and Skills) which allow for cultural capital, as these are a few important pieces of information or essential skills that we want the children at Nanpean School to know by the end of the term. These are bespoke to our school, which links with ‘Implementation’ and how our curriculum takes into account school context.
Curriculum Implementation is concerned with how we deliver our intended curriculum in our classrooms through effective teaching which leads to long-term learning. Our Curriculum is underpinned by our vision of ‘Nurturing Children’s Passion to Succeed’.
The Curriculum for each year group is carefully designed to ensure coverage and progression across all subjects; thus developing depth of knowledge and understanding. Our approach to teaching and learning supports our Curriculum by ensuring that lessons build on prior knowledge and learning and provide opportunities for guided and independent practice. The development of children’s knowledge and skills is key when building on prior learning and this supports the next stage of their learning.
Lesson Design Principles within our Curriculum:
To implement our Curriculum, we also use the following schemes and resources:
- Read, Write, Inc (Phonics)
- Power of Reading (English)
- White Rose (Maths)
- SACRE Cornwall (Religious Education)
- Charanga (Music)
- Cornwall Healthy Schools Scheme (PSHE)
- Kapow (Art and Design, Design Technology)
Implementation at Nanpean School: What will unify our Curriculum and make it bespoke to our school and context?
The Knowledge Organisers which contain KIRFS (Key Instant Recall Facts and Skills) are bespoke to our school. Our Subject Leaders pick facts and skills that they have considered key, based on their individual subject knowledge and expertise..
Our children state that one of the most exciting parts of our curriculum is that instead of traditional ‘Topic’ titles, children in our school work towards answering a key question, which is unveiled at the start of each term, and in answering this question, some of their work is communicated in a ‘Showcase Week’ (shared with the school community) at the end of each term.
At NCPS we define progress as learners ‘knowing more and remembering more of the intended curriculum we have planned for them’ and our assessment practices are centred around identifying where this is the case and, where pupils are failing to make progress in their learning of the curriculum, adapting our planning and provision accordingly. Pupil achievement will also be assessed using progression and destinations data, recognising that good outcomes are not just measured in qualifications but in how successfully pupils are developed as well-rounded citizens.
Impact at Nanpean School: What do the children learn and how does this compare to expectations?
We have clear Key Essential Skills (KES) documents. Whereas the National Curriculum document assigns learning to Key Stages, the KES documents that our Subject Leaders have produced assign specific skills and knowledge that will be taught to each year group. This therefore shows the journey of our pupils across all Curriculum Subjects, in all year groups, and helps us to ensure that all statutory content is delivered. Alongside a robust Assessment system in English and Maths, our teachers also use the National Curriculum statements to assess pupil’s progress in Foundation Subjects.
The Curriculum Leader at Nanpean School is Mr Nicholls (Headteacher). Please contact Mr Nicholls if you would like more information about the Curriculum at Nanpean School.