Our Curriculum

Learning at Darite

Situated in the heart of Darite village, our school provides a warm, welcoming and friendly atmosphere. We aim to provide a happy, safe environment where children feel secure to explore, experiment and develop curiosity so that learning comes naturally.

Our very own Wild Tribe area provides us with an additional space where we learn, explore, create, develop social skills and enjoy nature. We strive to deliver a broad and balanced ambitious, diverse and inclusive curriculum with daily Maths and English learning which is enhanced and supported by the wider curriculum and through the use of ICT.

Keeping our children physically active is also important, so we promote active lifestyles and mental wellbeing. We always involve the children in their learning as they always do best when they are involved and engaged. 

Everyone at Darite Academy is committed to giving everyone at our school the best possible education. If you have any questions about the curriculum, including our approach to SRE, please contact the school

Phonics and Early Reading

The Twinkl Phonics Scheme is used as our primary approach to teaching phonics from Reception through to Year 2. The scheme is also used to support children in Key Stage 2 who have significant gaps in their phonics knowledge.

Children participate in a daily phonics session which teaches sounds (phonemes) and letters (graphemes) provides opportunities for children to appply their skills and to recap previously taught material. Children are assessed regularly to ensure they are keeping up with their group. Additional support is put in place for children who are at risk of falling behind.

The Twinkl scheme uses workbooks and mini books, matched to the sounds being taught, to ensure the learning becomes embedded. Additionally, the children take home a reading book matched to their current level of phonic knowledge.

The children have access in the classroom to sound mats and the Common Exception Words taught at each level to support them in applying their phonic knowledge in other curriculum areas.

There is a document at the bottom of this page which we use to help parents and carers to understand how phonics is taught at Darite more clearly.

Reading

Reading is a key life skill and is the bedrock for learning new knowledge. It enables and empowers our children in becoming independent learners and broadens their experiences beyond that of their immediate surroundings.

It is our aim, by the end of their primary education, for all pupils to be able to read fluently with a good level of understanding of what they read. In school all pupils are taught the skills of reading using Reciprocal Reading methods. This includes using VIPERS (Vocabulary, Inference, Prediction, Explanation, Retrieval, Summarise/sequence). Children are immersed in a range of broad and rich books, written by a range of authors. Children are read to regularly by their teacher, they engage in regular guided reading sessions where pupils work in small groups with an adult to read texts together and engage in discussions and activities about the text.

These extensive reading experiences provide our children with the chance to develop culturally, emotionally, intellectually, socially and spiritually through carefully chosen texts.

We are dedicated to supporting our children in gaining a love and enjoyment of reading; leading to become lifelong readers. This commitment of learning allows our children to acquire new knowledge and develop their understanding of language: helping them to build upon what they already know.

Writing

At Darite, we believe it is important for pupils to have engaging and purposeful writing experiences. The wider curriculum is therefore often used as a stimuli for writing. We also follow high-quality planning that allows the children to be fully immersed in a text which then leads to high-level outcomes.


We use high quality examples of different genres of writing, to ensure that children are engaged and interested. Spelling, punctuation, grammar and handwriting are taught discretely but are also woven through the units of writing.

We use writing learning journeys, so that children are fully involved in the process of their writing, and so that they are able to see the next steps and the purpose of each step of their learning. We encourage children to apply their writing skills across a range of subjects to understand that writing is an integral part of being a successful citizen.

Maths

We use White Rose to structure the sequence of mathematics teaching using small steps, the mastery of which allows the children to build on skills. This provides us with consistency and continuity. We have calculation policies that ensure that we build upon skills and provide all adults with a clear model for teaching. Our use of resources enables our children to access learning in a concrete form which they then translate to the abstract and written form. We all start the year by looking at Place Value as this is fundamental to the skills for calculation. We block our planning to build skills and knowledge.

Our mathematics is planned and delivered to help pupils to master the skills. We achieve this by building through fluency activities to reasoning and problem solving. All of our children are able to access maths learning at their level and have opportunities to deepen their understanding.

Wider Curriculum

We use progression ladders, which we have developed with the support of the Bridge Academy Trust. These ladders were developed by exploring successful curriculums, carrying our research and trialling ideas. The ladders show how skills and knowledge progress and develop over the years at Primary School.

Our learning is driven by an enquiry question to engage pupils and give them a purpose for their learning. We plan our questions to be relevant, current and engaging. We also try to ensure a balance of local knowledge and broader knowledge.

Our Curriculum Statement

Staff have spent a considerable amount of time developing and working towards embedding an effective curriculum. This continues to be an ongoing journey for us as a school. Leaders have used a range of materials  to help shape our curriculum and as a result, our curriculum is not static. We are always looking to make it relevant in the ever-changing world that we encounter. 

Our Intent:
At Darite Primary Academy, our curriculum is designed with knowledge at its heart to ensure that children develop a strong and extensive understanding of the world. We appreciate that a knowledge-rich curriculum does not simply mean memorising disconnected facts and pupils develop relationships with knowledge so that they can put their knowledge to work in powerful, meaningful ways.

Our curriculum provides opportunities for pupils to develop understanding by connecting new knowledge with existing knowledge in order to develop fluency and the ability to apply their knowledge as skills.

Teachers and Subject Leaders have thought carefully about the sequence of our curriculum to ensure that new knowledge builds on what has been taught before and what may come after. We aim to deliver a broad, balanced and inclusive curriculum which empowers pupils to achieve their full potential and make informed and responsible decisions throughout their lives. 

Our Implementation
Our curriculum is underpinned by the National Curriculum alongside the trust ‘Knowledge Progression Ladders’, which helps to sequence the knowledge delivered as children progress through the school, along with ‘end points’ in our curriculum. The National Curriculum informs the knowledge progression ladders- detailing the knowledge that each child will learn in each year group. This knowledge is progressive and gives children opportunities to build on previous learning and experiences. 

The knowledge is then mapped across a 2 year rolling programme to ensure that every child has their full entitlement. Each year contains six enquiry questions to allow time and opportunities to fully embed the intented learning opportunities and to give children the greatest chance to succeed. This program revisits key aspects of the knowledge to help children to embed the vital aspects of the curriculum, supporting planning and implementation in a mixed age classroom. Knowledge is taught in subject specific lessons, built into an overarching enquiry question. Knowledge is taught to be remembered, not merely encountered. Our curriculum values long-term learning and we recognise that progress means knowing more and remembering more. We recognise that learning can be defined as an alteration in long-term memory and if nothing has been altered in the long-term memory, then nothing has been learned.

Staff use this rolling programme to guide them in their coverage of what needs to be taught and when. It is tailored to suit the needs of the children at that time, in teacher’s Medium Term Plans. These are then further broken down alongside class teachers and subject leads to produce detailed weekly planning where individual objectives from the curriculum are mapped alongside real-world tasks and outcomes to allow the children to link concepts with learning. Teachers use their pedagogical knowledge of how children learn best alongside their detailed knowledge of the children in their classes at the time, to enable pupils to understand key concepts, presenting information clearly to help embed key knowledge into long- term memory, so that pupils can develop fluency and automaticity. Feedback, retrieval practice and assessment are prioritised so that teachers can check pupils’ understanding effectively and identify any misunderstandings and misconceptions.

Much of the wider curriculum and maths learning takes place online using Seesaw as an evidence and learning tool. This allows specific feedback using one of the four types to be given and lets children act on feedback independently. The online and electronic tools also overcome barriers to learning and allow all children to access the full offer.

Our broad, balanced, inclusive and exciting curriculum is taught through a ‘themed’ approach whereby only genuine and authentic cross curricular links are made between subjects. When it is more appropriate, subjects are taught discreetly. Teachers ensure there is coverage of all the knowledge and break this into learning objectives with age-appropriate statements and use the ladders to guide their planning each day/week and throughout the year. Each 'theme' is led by an enquiry question such as 'Who were the Ancient Greeks and what have they done for us?' and 'What was life like for a Cornish miner?' These enquiries have subject specific outcomes and these are shared with the children to allow them to reflect on: the knowledge and skills they have acquired so far; any misconceptions along the way and; where they are heading (a purposeful outcome).

After teaching each unit, staff assess using the assessment ladders, mapping out a child’s journey in each subject and across the range of the curriculum. This is used when planning the next unit, to identify gaps for individuals and classes. It is also passed up to the next teacher, in preparation for transition before September. Whilst we adopt a ‘themed’ approach to some areas of our curriculum, we make efforts to ensure that children fully understand the subject in which they learning, in order to develop subject disciplinary knowledge.

Learning can also take place outside of the classroom and so our curriculum is further enhanced by other experiences. These can include:
- Visitors, educational visits and ‘hands on’ experiences.
- WOW days and events to inspire and engage pupils
- Opportunities for pupils to share the questions that they would like to explore, in order to encourage curiosity
- Links to the local community
- Purposeful outcomes that include the wider community

Our Impact
The impact of our curriculum can be seen in the pupils’ development of detailed knowledge and skills across the curriculum. This impact is reflected in the work that pupils produce, along with national test scores improving and key assessment points during the school year. At Darite Primary Academy, we strive to ensure that pupil attainment is improving and that pupils are fully prepared for their next stage of education and ready to contribute positively to society as a whole.

Our values (curiosity, creativity, excellence, responsibility, determination and enthusiasm) help to enable the pupils to become the very best version of themselves. Through the use of monitoring (pupil voice, lesson observations, outcomes, data analysis etc), leaders review and reflect on the intent and implementation of our curriculum to ensure that it has the desired impact. Subject leaders have developed a 3 Is document for their subject area and use action plans throughout the school year to build upon and develop their subject area.

If you would like any more information about our curriculum at Darite, please contact the school office who will put you in contact with the appropriate leaders.

Documents

View the following documents within your web browser or download to read later

Darite Curriculum Progression and Assessment.pdf
Darite Curriculum Progression and Assessment.pdf
Darite English Policy 2023 v2.doc
Darite English Policy 2023 v2.doc
Darite English Policy 2023 v2.pdf
Darite English Policy 2023 v2.pdf
EYFS Policy 2023.pdf
EYFS Policy 2023.pdf

 

 

How Reading is Taught in Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 at Darite.pdf
How Reading is Taught in Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 at Darite.pdf
Phonics for parents.pdf
Phonics for parents.pdf
Reading Karate.docx
Reading Karate.docx

 

Our Values...

Creativity

Creative

We are bold and innovative in our approach to find new solutions to the challenges we face.

Curiosity

Curious

We are inspired by the awe and wonder of the world.

Integrity

Responsible

We take responsibility for our actions in an environment of mutual respect.

Enthusiasm

Enthusiastic

We are passionate about learning.

Excellence

Excellent

We are the best we can be.

Determination

Determined

We overcome all barriers to reach our potential, developing a capacity to improve further.

Spaces available in all year groups for September 2024.


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