Our curriculum is a strength of our school, as it is varied, exciting and often involves visitors or local business links. Since we overhauled our curriculum initially 5 years ago, attendance has improved and children say they are excited by their learning and enjoy coming to school.
We teach English and Maths as separate subjects, usually during the morning sessions and then plan learning in Foundation subjects through half termly themes. We also use “intensives” to block short themes of learning into a day or a week, which enable deep enquiry into a particular subject or theme.
We use materials from the White Rose Maths Hub to support our Maths teaching, and Letters and Sounds to support our Phonics teaching. We use several published reading schemes and select books depending on the children’s learning style or needs.
We have a particular strength in Outdoor Education, through the opportunities we can offer living in the heart of the Lake District. A further strength of our curriculum is Music, with a large number of staff who are very musical, and involved in the local music scene. We also ensure that Performing Arts is high on our curriculum agendas having very strong links with the local Theatre by the Lake, who support our work towards the Arts Award and often enable our children to appear live on stage in the local community.
We use published schemes of work in some foundation subjects from Early Years to Y6. In Science we subscribe to “Engaging Science”, in Computing we use Barefoot Computing and Rising Stars, in Music we use “Charanga”, in RE we use the Carlisle Diocesan planning, all of which develop children’s skills throughout the school. Our school staff develop programmes in school for subjects where we don’t currently have a programme but we do have a significant focus (History/ Geography/ Art/ PSHCE/ Outdoor Learning)
We always take learning opportunities which arise at short notice if they are appropriate and exciting. For instance, this year we have worked with the local community and local businesses including The Rivers Trust, Theatre by the Lake, NSPCC, Rotary, Keswick Lions, local sports coaches, Keswick School, Keswick Churches and many others on a less regular basis, often through contacts in our parent body.
The Early Years (Three to 5 Years Old)
As with all Early Years settings, our programme of education for Nursery and Reception aged children covers three prime areas (Physical, Personal, Social and Emotional and Communication, Language and Literacy) and four Specific areas (Literacy, Maths, Art and Design and Understanding the World). Children learn in whole class groups, small groups, individually and through accessing the high quality continuous provision in the setting.
Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 (5 Years to 11 Years Old)
In common with all maintained schools, our curriculum is guided by the National Curriculum which is divided into two distinct but inter-related stages for children aged 5 to 11 years old:
- Key Stage 1 – Children aged 5 Years to 7 Years old
- Key Stage 2 – Children aged 7 Years to 11 Years old
The National Curriculum comprises the following subjects at KS1 and KS2:
- Art & Design
- Design & Technology
- Languages (KS2 only)
- Physical Education
In addition to these subjects, we also teach Religious Education and Personal, Social and Health Education and Citizenship (PSHE). Children with special educational needs may follow a modified version of the National Curriculum.
You can find out more about the National Curriculum on the government information and services website at GOV.UK
Our curriculum is also enriched to enhance your child’s cultural experiences in a number of ways, including:
- Bringing theatre and musical groups into school
- Visiting local theatres and theatre workshops
- Providing educational visits – both day and residential
- Holding events in school, such as World Book Day and Fair Trade events
- Providing additional activities including Bikeability and Kidsafe training, extra sports coaching, additional cultural, arts and environmental activities
In addition, we run a range of extra-curricular activities throughout the year, voluntarily organised by members of staff and covering such subjects as art, music, games, chess, drumming and outdoor activities.
We are also able to offer musical instrument tuition for a wide variety of instruments including strings, brass, woodwind and guitar. Our instrumentalists enjoy the opportunity of playing in front of the school on regular occasions, including during assemblies and at our annual Music Concert.