A Values Based Approach Curriculum
At Kirton Lindsey Primary School, the curriculum has been carefully designed to reflect the values of the school and to meet the unique needs of the children who attend the school and live in a rural community.
The school’s curriculum offer encompasses all the content included in the National Curriculum but also offers the children a wealth of enrichment opportunities to ensure they enjoy their educational experiences, grow and develop their personal skills, maintain positive mental health, and become lifelong learners with an aspiration to succeed.
The school offers the children a theme based learning experience with six broad, whole school themes that run on a 2 year cycle. Each phase in the school (Foundation Stage, Key Stage 1, Lower Key Stage 2 and Upper Key Stage 2) then interpret the theme at the appropriate level for the children and the statutory curriculum requirements. Each theme is based around a key, quality text that has been carefully chosen as a stimulus for learning as well as to engage and challenge the children with high quality literature. It is important to us that the children enjoy learning and have fun at school (Value 1) and so lots of trips out and visitors to school are planned to engage and excite the children eg. visits to Flamborough Head, Lincolnshire Show, the theatre, Yorkshire Wildlife Park, Rand Farm and visits by theatre companies, Roman Day experience and Viking Day experience. As the community in which the children live is not as diverse as other communities, the curriculum ensures that the children get the opportunity to develop their knowledge of other cultures by studying other cultures and faiths through Geography and R.E, visiting other areas eg. London, York, Scarborough, visiting places of worship of other faiths and welcoming visitors from other cultures to school. Through this work, we promote individuality and encourage good and fair behaviour and respect for all (Values 4 and 5). Wherever possible, children’s interests and ideas are actively sought out by staff and listened to so that the curriculum remains relevant to their needs. Sessions are planned at the beginning of themes to assess what the children already know about a topic and what they are interested in so that the learning can carefully be tailored to excite and engage children and extend their knowledge (Values 8, 9 and 10).
Personal, Social and Emotional Education forms the spine of our curriculum as we believe that personal growth is as important for our children as academic learning (Value 6). The children receive an hour a week throughout the school of taught PSHE lessons using the Jigsaw Scheme. Each term starts with a whole school assembly to introduce the theme and then this is developed in an age appropriate way across the half term in class groups. The themes introduced to the children are called -Being Me in My World, Celebrating Differences, Dreams and Goals, Healthy Me, Relationships and Changing Me. This work is further supported by Big Talk Sex and Relationships Education and E-Safety work by external consultant Tim Pinto annually and visitors to school to provide road safety, water safety, cycle safety and basic first aid for the older children. Children are also taught about positive mindsets through assemblies, class Mindi boards and our school ‘have a go’ song. They have the opportunity to take part in a range of residential opportunities designed to challenge them to try new things, develop their personal skills and qualities and step out of their comfort zone. This work helps us to ensure our children keep physically and emotionally safe and supports a positive outlook on new experiences and challenges (Values 2 and 3).
Alongside the taught curriculum on offer, we run a school House system that ensures that the children learn to get along with and support a wide range of other children and staff. All children meet weekly in their House for assemblies and work together to compete in various House competitions across the year eg rugby, cross country, multi sports, art, music, spelling, reading, maths, STEM (Value 7). The children also have the opportunity to stand for the School Council, representing their peers and working alongside members of the senior leadership team to develop and improve our school. This also teaches them about the process of democracy and with rights come responsibilities.
Finally, the school has developed a wide range of assessments linked to the curriculum to allow us to track children’s progress, challenge them to achieve all they are capable of and offer additional support in a timely manner where this is needed, to ensure they are benefitting fully from the curriculum on offer. The school uses standardised testing (NFER), diagnostic testing (Star Reader, Star Maths, GL Assessment) and short, frequent assessments (Rising Stars, Star Spell, Rock Star Maths) to makes sure leaders know how well the children are doing in our school and how well our curriculum is meeting their unique needs. Children receive a wealth of awards to celebrate their successes, large and small, and parents and governors join us to celebrate in our assemblies, competitions and festivals (Values 8,9 10 and 11).
For more information about the National Curriculum Programmes of Study and Statutory Assessments please see The National Curriculum – Key Stage 1&2