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Our Curriculum

Our Curriculum

Our curriculum is both creative and enabling, developing children's essential life skills so that they have the foundations to become independent, healthy, successful and resilient members of society. Underpinning our whole curriculum are our 7 school values of enjoy, achieve, teamwork, resilience, independence, communicate and respect. Our creative curriculum is taught using innovative approaches and "wow" moments to develop within our pupils an intrinsic love of learning, through memorable experiences. The highly personalised approach to the curriculum and environment for pupils with additional needs enables all pupils to access learning and fulfil their potential. Our focus on health and wellbeing ensures that children are ready to learn and have strategies to draw upon when faced with challenges. The school is at the heart of the local community and our curriculum is closely linked to our community's needs, through initiatives such as Riverside Rangers, our Cookery Corner to promote healthy choices and the many events we hold to bring the community into the school.

What our children think of the curriculum

"Our curriculum is fun, interesting, challenging and collaborative."

"We develop our knowledge, skills, facts and words."

Intent: what are we trying to achieve with our curriculum?

By the end of Key Stage 2 we want Riverside children to:-

  • Acquire good subject specific knowledge, skills and understanding as set out in the National Curriculum so that children maximise their potential and develop a lifelong love of learning.
  • Be respectful of each other, have inclusive attitudes and be good citizens within the school, Trust, local, British and global communities in a diverse, modern world.
  • Be healthy and resilient with good physical and mental wellbeing, managing their feelings and emotions appropriately.
  • Be aspirational about their futures and well prepared for adulthood.
  • Be able to communicate effectively and confidently in a range of different situations, using a wide and varied vocabulary.
  • Have good social skills and be able to work both independently and collaboratively.

All of these intentions are underpinned by our seven core values: achieve, enjoy, respect, resilience, communicate, independence and teamwork.

Implementation: how is our curriculum delivered?

  • We follow the National Curriculum for KS1 and KS2 and the EYFS curriculum. We ensure it is progressive and builds on skills and knowledge over time, including embedding key English and maths skills across the curriculum. It is taught creatively through themed topics which make cross curricular links and include memorable experiences, such as visits and visitors, which our pupils may not otherwise have. It is carefully differentiated to ensure appropriate support and challenge for all pupils. This may include a highly personalised curriculum and environment where necessary for children with complex needs. Pupil conferencing enables pupils to both give and receive feedback on their learning and involves them in setting their next steps. We collaborate with a wide range of other schools, including as part of the MAT, to share best practice and develop expertise.
  • We prioritise inclusion and ensure all staff are highly skilled and trained to respond to the wide range of needs within the school. We integrate our High Needs children with their mainstream peers, which promotes respect and tolerance of differences. We make a positive contribution to the local community through our Riverside Rangers Programme and promote British values and citizenship through our PSHE ‘Jigsaw’ curriculum. Our RE curriculum ensures awareness and respect for a range of faiths and we hold regular themed weeks to celebrate other cultures, promote anti-bullying and awareness of disability. Regular whole school, key stage and class assemblies promote spiritual awareness, highlight British and school values, demonstrate how to stay safe and celebrate achievement.
  • We offer both practical and therapeutic curriculum elements to promote healthy lifestyles and support mental wellbeing. Our cookery corner is used regularly by all classes with a focus on healthy eating and teaching practical skills related to food preparation and hygiene. Our Biodome links to this agenda by allowing children to grow their own produce, enhancing their understanding of where food comes from and bringing the science curriculum to life. Our PE curriculum and opportunities for daily exercise such as ‘5 a Day’ ensure that children value physical health and enjoy being active. Emotional wellbeing is supported by a range of therapies including our school dog, Lego therapy and Emotional First Aid, supporting children who experience anxiety and teaching them strategies to manage their own needs as they grow. Our seven core values are interwoven throughout the curriculum and promote good behaviour across the school.
  • Our curriculum has a focus on teaching children to be resilient and open to challenge in order to be the best they can be. We ensure they know how to keep themselves safe including when online. We provide opportunities for children to consider future career paths through our annual Jobs Fair and recognise achievements in all subjects both in and out of school.
  • Our curriculum develops speech, language and communication skills through a focus on vocabulary, beginning in the EYFS, and identifying ‘Star Words’ in all subjects. Children are taught to greet others politely and engage in conversation with peers and adults. The Maths Mastery programme followed in Years R to 4 is language rich and encourages children to speak in full sentences and explain their thinking from an early age. We identify children with needs in this area early and offer specialist support from skilled staff. Children’s confidence in talking to an audience is encouraged through paired talk in the classroom, contributing to school council and taking part in performances and assemblies.
  • Through our curriculum, children have opportunities to work in groups of different sizes and abilities in all subjects. In themed weeks there are activities which group together children from the whole primary age range. STEM projects such as Young Eco Engineers and K’Nex challenge offer collaborative working and problem-solving opportunities. Older children are given positions of responsibility such as ‘Play Leaders’, where they can role model to younger peers.

Impact: what difference is our curriculum having on our pupils?

  • We strive to ensure that our children’s attainment across the curriculum is in line with or exceeding their potential when we consider their varied starting points. We measure this carefully using a range of materials but always considering age related expectations.
  • Class teachers use high quality questioning skills, marking and observations to make formative assessments which inform future planning and ensure that all children build on their current knowledge and skills at a good pace.
  • Summative assessment compares children’s attainment to national expectations across the curriculum and is tracked to ensure rates of progress are at least good for all children, including vulnerable groups such as those with SEND or who are disadvantaged.
  • Assessment judgements are moderated both in school and externally with local schools. Experienced staff undertake moderator training through the LA which helps validate school judgements.
  • The quality of work in children’s books and evidence of learning in more practical subjects is monitored regularly by subject leaders and the SLT to ensure progress over time, evaluate the impact of different topics and teaching approaches and check on consistency of practice.
  • Application of skills across the curriculum can be seen in children’s learning books, which record the majority of subjects in one place.
  • Teachers liaise with each other at transition points to share key information which ensures prior learning is embedded and knowledge and skills are built on.
  • Our pupils develop into fully rounded characters with a clear understanding of our seven core values. Positive behaviour and good attitudes to learning throughout the school reflect our focus on our values and the success of our therapeutic approaches. We closely monitor the impact of interventions around social, emotional and mental health needs in children who require more significant support.
  • Pupils are well prepared for their next stage of education and motivated to face the challenges that lay ahead.
  • Pupils demonstrate respect and tolerance of others, and are good role models within the local community.

For supporting your children at home please see the link below - Parents in Partnership

More information for each subject can be found on the individual subject links below.