Statutory information

Curriculum overview

Curriculum Policy November 2019 >

The development and implementation of an all through knowledge led curriculum has been at the heart of our school for the past four years. Consequently, outcomes are good and pupils are well prepared for the next stage of their lives.

We believe that all young people have the capacity to learn, grow and develop, and that they are entitled to equality of access and opportunity. We aim to support and motivate every pupil to achieve his or her fullest potential.

Curriculum Intent

We intend that our curriculum:

  • Is ambitious and designed to give all pupils the knowledge and cultural capital they need to be successful
  • Provides a broad and balanced education for all pupils that follows the National Curriculum
  • Enables all pupils to study the full curriculum with no narrowing. Therefore:
    • Pupils of all abilities have access to the full curriculum
    • In the primary phase, a broad range of subjects is taught in all Key Stages, including Year 6.
    • In the secondary phase, a broad range of subjects is taught throughout years 7 to 9
    • At Key Stage 4, the EBacc is at the heart of the curriculum.
  • Engages our young people in their learning
  • Challenges our young people
  • Is coherently planned and sequenced towards cumulatively sufficient knowledge and skills for future learning and employment. As an all through school, we have carefully sequenced the curriculum from EYFS to Year 11 in all subject areas
  • Supports pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development
  • Supports pupils’ physical development and responsibility for their own health, and enables them to be active
  • Promotes a positive attitude towards learning
  • Ensures equal access to learning, with high expectations for every pupil and appropriate levels of challenge and support
  • Is successfully designed to meet the needs of pupils with Special Educational Needs and/or disabilities (SEND), developing their knowledge, skills and abilities to apply what they know and can do with increasing fluency and independence
  • Provides subject choices that support pupils’ learning and progression, and enables them to work towards achieving their goals
  • Develops pupils’ independent learning skills and resilience to equip them for further/higher education and employment
  • Promotes the learning and development of all of our children to ensure they are ready for their next Key Stage.

The curriculum at Litcham School is all that pupils learn and experience. The curriculum should enable pupils to shape their world through the following:

  • Growth in personal confidence
  • The facility to be creative
  • The challenge of responsibility
  • The development of fundamental British values
  • A clear and practical moral framework
  • The opportunity to make informed choices
  • A respect for people, community and the environment
  • The experience of success and celebration of achievement

Curriculum Implementation

The work given to our pupils is demanding and matches the intent of our curriculum in being coherently planned and sequenced towards cumulatively sufficient knowledge. Over the course of study, teaching is designed to help pupils remember long term the content they’ve been taught, and to integrate new knowledge into larger ideas. Teaching materials selected by teachers reflect the school’s ambitious intentions for the course of study, and contribute to reducing staff workload. These materials support the intent of a coherently planned curriculum, sequenced towards cumulatively sufficient knowledge and skills for future learning and employment.

Teachers have a good knowledge of the subject(s) and courses they teach. As an all through school, our primary curriculum is significantly enhanced by input from secondary subject specialists and at our secondary phase, all teachers are subject specialists.

Reading is prioritised throughout the school to allow pupils to access the full curriculum offer. The school provides a rigorous and sequential approach to the reading curriculum that develops pupils’ fluency, confidence and enjoyment in reading. We have a sharp focus on ensuring that younger children gain the phonics knowledge and language comprehension necessary to read.

Organisation and planning

The taught curriculum is delivered through a variety of means including lessons, educational visits, assemblies, events, homework and alternative curricular days (IMPACT days).

The curriculum has been designed to provide all pupils with a broad and balanced knowledge based experience appropriate to their needs, abilities, interests and aspirations. A comprehensive programme of enrichment activities encompassing study support, sport, music, drama, outdoor activities, trips and visits underpins the academic curriculum, giving pupils access to an extensive range of opportunities.


EYFS curriculum

The EYFS curriculum is taught in a separate Reception class. The Early Years curriculum is ambitious and designed to give children the knowledge, self-belief and cultural capital they need to succeed. The curriculum is coherently planned and sequenced, building on what children know and can do, towards cumulatively sufficient knowledge and skills for their future learning.

There is a strong focus on the early acquisition of phonics and early maths skills.

Details of the curriculum can be found in the EYFS policy.

Primary Curriculum

Pupils are taught in mixed ability classes, with one class in each year group. The National Curriculum is followed to ensure breadth, depth of knowledge and balance.

Pupils have discreet English and Mathematics lessons. Other curriculum areas are also taught discretely including Computing, Modern Foreign Languages, Personal, Social and Health Education, PE, RE and Science. Where work is taught thematically, teachers ensure that the National Curriculum requirements of each separate subject are met through careful planning, assessment and record keeping.

Class teaching, group work and individual teaching are used as appropriate. For example, individual teaching is used in the teaching of reading or music.

As an all through school, the curriculum has been mapped from Reception to Year 11. The primary phase prospectus details the knowledge and methodology for each subject area.

  • English: The curriculum develops reading, writing, speaking and listening. Reading is a priority, with a sharp focus on ensuring that younger children gain the phonics knowledge and language comprehension necessary to read.
  • Mathematics: A mastery approach is followed so that pupils gain the knowledge to handle numbers and measures mentally, orally and in writing; use a variety of calculations accurately and appropriately; interpret and use data presented in graphs, charts and tables; properties of 2D and 3D shape and basic algebra
  • Science: The curriculum is planned using half termly or termly themes and linked with other relevant subjects including technology, geography, mathematics and computing.
  • Computing: The curriculum is taught through discrete lessons and as an integral part of all other curriculum subjects, with Key Stage 2 classes having input from a specialist teacher from the secondary phase
  • History, Geography, Art and Design and Technology are often taught in a thematic way:I
    • HistoryI: The curriculum develops pupils’ knowledge so that they can investigate sources of evidence, ask interesting questions, explore the lives of people from the past and look at changes to society over extended periods of time.
    • Geography: The curriculum develops pupils’ knowledge about maps, their locality, places further afield, environmental issues, and skills concerned with observing, recording, and analysing evidence.
    • Art: Pupils are given the opportunity to use a variety of materials and techniques to produce both two and three dimensional work. The curriculum includes discussions of specific paintings and other works of art and the lives of artists.
    • Design and Technology: The curriculum develops pupils’ knowledge of problem-solving techniques alongside the ability to apply them to new situations, using a range of hand tools and basic materials. Several classes have lessons taught be a specialist Design and Technology teacher from the secondary phase.
  • Drama: When appropriate, pupils are given the opportunity to act and be involved in role play.
  • Modern Foreign Languages: Pupils study French, with every Key Stage 2 class having a weekly foreign language lesson, the majority of which are taught by a specialist language teacher.
  • Music: Music is taught throughout the school. Key Stage 2 children are provided with many additional experiences in music and the opportunity to perform alongside older children. Individual instrumental tuition is available on string, woodwind, guitar, piano, brass and percussion instruments.
  • PATHS (Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies). The majority of the Personal, Social and Health Education (PHSE) curriculum is delivered through PATHS and this is taught as two discreet lessons per week for each class.
  • Physical Education: All children have regular, timetabled PE lessons, coupled with an outstanding range of extra-curricular PE and competitions through a Sports Partnership. All Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 classes have the opportunity to swim.
  • Religious Education: RE is taught using a thematic approach, looking at how different religions (Christianity and the other five major faiths – Buddhism. Judaism, Sikhism, Hinduism and Islam) teach, worship and celebrate the same aspect. Religious Education is taught in accordance with the Norfolk Agreed Syllabus.
  • RSE (Relationships and Sex Education). The school is an early adopter of the new RSE curriculum. Pupils are taught the curriculum in their classes by their class teacher.

Secondary Curriculum

Key Stage 3

Cohorts are carefully divided into mixed ability tutor groups in Year 7 based on prior attainment and information provided by primary schools. Pupils are taught in these groups for the majority of their subjects. In Years 8 and 9, pupils are reorganised into new mixed ability groups for Humanities, Computer Science, Art and Music. English, Mathematics and Science have the ability to set groups according to ability. Decisions are taken based on how the curriculum can best be implemented to maximise impact.

Key Stage 3 curriculum hours

Pupils follow a fortnightly timetable with 25 hours per week. The table below shows the number of hours per week for each subject during 2019-2020:

Subject

Year 7

Year 8

Year 9

English

4

4

4

Mathematics

4

4

3.5

Science

3.5

3.5

4

Art

1

1

1

French

3

1.5

1.5

2nd Language (Spanish or German)

 

1.5

1.5

Geography

1.5

1.5

1.5

History

1.5

1.5

1.5

Computer Science

1

1

1

Music

1

1

1

PE

2

2

2

RS

1

1

1

Technology

1.5

1.5

1.5

Total

25

25

25

 

Key Stage 4

EBacc is at the heart of the curriculum. All pupils study English, Mathematics, Science and History or Geography (or both). The vast majority of pupils opt to study a Modern Foreign Language.

Key Stage 4 curriculum hours

Pupils follow a fortnightly timetable with 25 hours of teaching per week.

The table shows the number of hours per week for each subject or option during 2019-2020:

Subject

Year 10

Year 11

English*

3.5

4

Mathematics**

5

4.5

Science***

4.5

4.5

RS

***

***

PE

2

2

Option A

2.5

2.5

Option B

2.5

2.5

Option C

2.5

2.5

Option D

2.5

2.5

Total

25

25

 

*          Pupils study English Language and English Literature

**         Pupils study Mathematics and Statistics. Our most able pupils can also study for Free Standing Maths Qualifications in Additional Mathematics

***       Over a third of pupils take the three separate sciences of Biology, Chemistry and Physics. The remaining pupils take the double award.

****      Provision for core RS and RSE (Relationships and Sex Education) is taught through units of work predominantly delivered on IMPACT days.

Option subjects are as follows:

  • Art
  • Child Development
  • Computer Science
  • Drama
  • Physical Education
  • Geography
  • History
  • Modern Foreign Languages:
    • French
    • German
    • Spanish
  • Music
  • Personal and Social Development (ASDAN)
  • Religious Studies
  • Design and Technology:
    • Food Preparation and Nutrition
    • Design and Technology with a specialism in Textiles or Timbers

Pupils receive high quality information, advice and guidance to support the options process through:

  • IMPACT day provision
  • Tutors
  • Subject staff
  • Beacon East Careers Service
  • Guidance interviews with senior staff.

The Deputy Headteacher manages the options process in conjunction with the Head of Year 9.

Parents and pupils are invited to a combined options and parent evening.

Collective Worship

The school is a non-denominational all-through school.

At the primary phase there is a weekly whole school assembly. Key Stage 2 children have two further assemblies which always have a spiritual, moral, social or cultural dimension and may involve a collective act of worship. Year 2 children attend one of these assemblies. Local Church of England ministers lead an assembly every half term. At certain times of the year we hold additional acts of worship, some of which are held at the local church. These include Harvest festival, Christingle and Easter services.

At the secondary phase, each year group has a weekly assembly which always has a spiritual, moral, social or cultural dimension and may involve a collective act of worship. In addition, daily tutor periods may be used to help pupils with their spiritual, personal, social and emotional development. Assemblies and tutor periods underpin the ethos that we endeavour to foster in the school.

Parents have the right in law to withdraw their children from collective worship in both phases of the school.

Religious Education

Provision for Religious Education challenges pupils to reflect on questions about life’s ultimate meaning and purpose. Pupils are encouraged to reflect on different religions, beliefs, values and traditions. They are also encouraged to explore their own unique beliefs and values, and they are given space to express them. Provision meets legal requirements and the Norfolk Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education is adhered to.

The RE course in Key Stage 1 and 2 is a bespoke curriculum based on the agreed syllabus. The RS course in Key Stage 3 covers philosophical and ethical issues, examining the nature of belief, the relationship between beliefs and actions, and a reflective exploration of values. A number of faiths are examined, as are secular viewpoints. The RS course at Key Stage 4 is taught to all pupils through modules within IMPACT days.

Inclusion

Teachers set high expectations for all pupils and use assessments to inform their teaching. Teachers plan lessons so that pupils with SEND can study every subject wherever possible, and ensure that any barriers to pupils achieving well are removed.

Teachers take account of the needs of pupils whose first language is not English. Lessons are planned to help pupils to develop their English, and to support pupils to take part in all subjects.

Further information can be found in our statement of equality information and objectives, and in our SEND policy and information report.

Our Schools

Synergy Multi-Academy Trust is made up of schools, both secondary and primary, from north Norfolk. The Trust was initially established by Reepham High School and College in 2015. Our vision is simple; for all of our schools to work together to provide teaching and learning of the highest quality and for all of them to provide an exceptional range of educational experiences and opportunities.

Our Schools

Synergy Multi-Academy Trust is made up of schools, both secondary and primary, from north Norfolk. The Trust was initially established by Reepham High School and College in 2015. Our vision is simple; for all of our schools to work together to provide teaching and learning of the highest quality and for all of them to provide an exceptional range of educational experiences and opportunities.