Curriculum Bolton Primary School
"You have created a calm, purposeful, happy place in which to learn. You and your staff find out about what your pupils are interested in to make sure that you plan learning which will excite and engage them. You are creative in addressing the challenge of meeting curriculum requirements in your mixed-age classes. You make sure that you assiduously record the content covered by each cohort across all the subjects so that all pupils have a broad and balanced curriculum.." Ofsted April 2016
CORE SUBJECTS: ENGLISH, MATHS, SCIENCE
At Bolton Primary emphasis and importance is placed on your child's development in these key areas. The core subjects are allocated a specific time during each week at school; teachers have the freedom to shape the curriculum to their pupils’ needs. There is a strong focus on basic skills with the view that children will leave primary with the knowledge and skills that they need to succeed both at secondary school and in the real world.
We aim to encourage and improve their use of language in a variety of contexts. Through high quality teaching and learning experiences in the subject, we aim to foster a love of literature and language in many forms. Children will be given opportunities to express their thoughts clearly and fluently in both written and oral forms and develop their vocabulary.
Click here to see the Termly Learning Overviews for more information about genres and the daily timetable for each Year Group.
Reading is a great strength in our school. The 2019 SATS results show 79% of our pupils reaching the expected standard or above and 50% at greater depth.
We place great emphasis upon reading and provide the children with an interesting range of books and other reading materials to support this. We want them to read fluently and with understanding so that reading becomes a real source of enjoyment and pleasure. In class 1, we have daily phonics teaching groups in school to encourage them to practise and develop a range of skills. In Class 2 and 3, reading and the analysis of texts is taught in a varied and interesting ways. Children may do Guided or Group reading regularly or independent reading – where they can simply enjoy a good book through reading themselves. Children in all classes will have the regular experience of hearing texts being read to them. We monitor your child’s progress through an extensive range of available reading material to ensure that they reach their full potential. Each teacher will keep a record of your child’s reading progress and achievement and will set targets with them. Children receive weekly homework and a weekly reading requirement; sometimes they receive set tasks relating to reading or group reading that is happening at school. We encourage and welcome support from home with the reading process, ask parents and pupils to use the logs provided when reading at home as a way of monitoring their reading. * The school aims to regularly provide workshops and support sessions for parents to help with learning at home. There is a weekly Buddy Reading slot where children read and share books with their buddies.
At Bolton children enjoy great success with phonics. In 2017 and 2018 100% of pupils achieved the expected standard and 75% in 2019. (The national standard in 2018 was 82%)
Phonics is the knowledge of how the alphabetic sounds work and how these sounds are combined to correspond to the spoken word. Phonemes are the sounds made by blending letters to correspond to the spoken word and graphemes are the written equivalent of the phonemes.
Through Phonics we aim:
- To deliver a high quality, systematic phonic programme that is fast, focused, frequent and fun.
- To enable children to start learning phonic knowledge and skills as soon as they begin school with the expectation they will become fluent readers, having secured word building and recognition by the end of Key stage one.
- To teach the children to apply the skill of blending phonemes in order to read words.
- To teach the children to apply the skill of segmenting words into phonemes in order to spell words.
- To ensure that children apply phonic knowledge as their first approach to reading and spelling, even though all words do not conform to regular phonic patterns.
- To ensure children are taught tricky words that do not conform to regular phonic patterns.
- To encourage children to attempt to spell words for themselves, within the range of their phonic knowledge by building an individual repertoire and the confidence and strategies to attempt the unfamiliar (For more information see the document below).
Children are encouraged to express themselves by writing in different contexts and for a variety of purposes and audiences. We will develop children’s creativity, imagination, vocabulary, spelling and handwriting through the teaching of writing. We will do this through modelling good practice, using good examples and setting writing targets to aid self-improvement. We give each child the opportunity to discuss and assess their own writing and the work of others. Termly, the whole school takes part in ‘The Writing Challenge’ which is an opportunity for a ‘cold write’ on a theme or genre so that the teachers can analyse progress and this can inform future planning and areas to focus on. Handwriting is a skill which can only be improved by constant practice. We have regular handwriting practice sessions and use the Penpals Scheme. Please see the website – Messages for Parents from Penpals: https://www.cambridge.org/files/7314/9020/2522/PfH_Messages_for_Parents_combined.pdf
We support the development of this skill across the writing opportunities provided by the curriculum.
Speaking and Listening
We want our children to become confident and proficient in their communication skills. We encourage them to communicate clearly, describe accurately and to ask questions. We provide lots of opportunities through philosophy, drama, assemblies, presentation and discussion. Children have the opportunity to do their own ‘children assemblies’ on a topic or theme of their choice and these are always popular and successful. It is important to encourage children to develop their listening skills and to enjoy listening in a range of different situations. We regularly ask them to follow instructions, convey messages and follow ideas raised in group discussion with understanding and interest. Speaking and listening encompasses all areas of our curriculum.
Children need to have a good grasp pf the technical aspects to writing to help them to be successful in the future; they need to have ‘tools’ to understand and analyse both written and spoken English. At Bolton, we aim to develop a repertoire of key vocabulary/ terminology relating to grammar, punctuation and spelling. Punctuation for example can greatly change the meaning of a sentence. Children need to know ‘Standard English’ and know when it is appropriate to use formal or informal language. Where possible the teaching of spelling, punctuation and grammar are all embedded in the general teaching of Literacy/English. However, each class has a discreet weekly lesson to focus on particular areas of Punctuation and Grammar and as with reading time is set aside for spelling activities. The children will for example take part in lessons such as ‘Kung-Fu Punctuation’ to help them with their understanding.
Link to power point - workshop – spag
Link to Word Class PPT
Link to Spelling Appendix
Since 2017, to raise standards and improve the engagement in mathematics, Bolton Primary School has been using the very popular and enjoyable -The Big Maths Scheme (Andrell Education)
This year KS2 (2019) our average scaled score was 104 – in line with the national average scaled score and was up from 99 in 2018. We believe that our children are making pleasing progress in this subject area. 21% of our children reached greater depth in mathematics in 2019. In KS1, 92% of children reached the expected standard.
Maths will be essential in almost every problem that your child has to solve in their daily lives. We aim to ensure that your child will develop a positive attitude towards Mathematics and to learn to use it with confidence, pleasure and understanding. We feel that a link to real-life situations is crucial in our teaching. Their knowledge, skills and understanding in maths will develop as they use it in practical activities to solve relevant meaningful problems and to explore the patterns and relationships on which mathematical concepts depend. * See below a range of resources to show you how we teach addition, subtraction, multiplication and division skills in school.
Progression in + _ x ÷
Big Maths for Parents info sheet
Big Maths power point from workshop
At Bolton, we are aiming to continuously improve the teaching and learning in this subject so that all children have a good quality first experience of science that fosters curiosity. All children will be encouraged to ask questions about their world and develop the skills they need to answer those questions. Children at Bolton should have a good understanding of what Science is, be able to investigate problems, learn how Science works and discover why Science matters in the world. The teaching of Science for your child will be based, as far as possible, on the immediate experience of their own environment. Where possible Science teaching and learning will link to a theme or topic and by the time children reach Y5/6 they will be receiving a minimum of two hours per week in this core subject. They should acquire the skills and attitude that enables them to observe carefully and systematically and find patterns in observations, to note similarities and differences, to make generalisations, to set up fair tests and devise simple experiments and to use tools for a planned purpose.
Y5/6 children are taught science by a science specialist teacher. *
Your child will be taught many of the foundation subjects in a topic/ project based way. We also hold termly Topic Days where the children are taught in their mixed-aged House Groups. On Topic Day, the children experience activities/tasks relating to a new Topic as a way of generating interest and curiosity in the new theme. A cross-curricular approach makes for a more meaningful learning environment which will ignite your child's interest and imagination. It also ensures that they will learn to appreciate and to apply acquired skills and knowledge to relevant and important subject areas needed for their future. *
At Bolton Primary School, school we have a good supply of up to date laptops and iPads. There are interactive whiteboards in Class 1 and 3 and a plasma screen in Class 2. We also have a good range of software that covers both the requirements of the National Curriculum for Computing and which also support other subject areas. We know the vital role that computers will have in your child's life and we will ensure that they become confident and able users of technology and its various applications, including e-mail, coding and the internet. * We also are very aware that we need to help our children stay safe on-line -for more information see our Internet Safety Advice.
Geography is concerned with the study of places, the human and physical processes which shape them and the people who live in them. Through our teaching of this subject we aim that your child will develop an understanding of the world they live in and of the interdependence of individuals, groups, nations and the environment. We also study the child's local area. *
Our teaching of history aims to encourage your child to enjoy their heritage; to increase their motivation to investigate and research; to develop their skills for finding out, understanding and evaluating that information. The multicultural content will also encourage your child to gain tolerance, empathy and social awareness. *
We aim to promote your child's enjoyment of art and to allow for the expression of their ideas, thoughts and feelings through a variety of 2 and 3 dimensional media as well as studying famous artists. This will develop the important areas of their visual perception and visual literacy as well as art appreciation. * The children get an opportunity to display some of their Art work at the annual Bolton Field Day. In our Winter Performance, the children are encouraged to design and create programmes and costumes.
We aim that your child's life should be enriched by a range of musical experiences. The music in school will foster your child's sensitivity to and their understanding and enjoyment of music through an active involvement in listening, composing and performing.The children have the opportunity to: learn individual instruments – clarinets and recorders, sing in a choir and all pupils perform in the Winter and Summer music performances, as well as church services such as The Christingle and Remembrance Service. The children in KS2, are taught by a music specialist from the Music Service and use a resource called Charanga: an award-winning, modern day resource for primary music.They regularly listen to a range of music genres in assemblies. *
DT gives children the opportunity to develop skills, knowledge and understanding of design and make functional products. We feel that it is vital to nurture creativity and innovation through design and by exploring the designed and made world in which we all live and work.
Technical capability is essential for your child to live and work in a technical society and the designing and making of products is a desirable activity which can provide fulfilment throughout their life. We therefore aim to develop his or her skills, knowledge and understanding to work with a range of materials and components to make and evaluate products fit for a specific purpose. * Your child will develop an understanding of energy and structures and will become aware of the impact of technology and its contribution to the quality of life.
Bolton Primary school values PE highly and feel that early positive experiences in Physical Education are crucial to promoting a long term love of being active and healthy. Subject areas that your child will cover will include gymnastic skills, creative movement and dance, games skills leading to minor and major games, and athletics. * The whole school will have the opportunity to participate in swimming lessons at the nearby swimming pool at Appleby. We aim to encourage your child to enjoy and succeed in the whole range of activities offered to them and that we promote a belief that individual and non-competitive exercise is as valuable as inclusion in team sports and competitions. We also appreciate that winning and losing are aspects of sport and life that children need to learn to deal with in a fair and acceptable manner. In our teaching of PE, we therefore aim not only to encourage your child's physical development but also to ensure that they develop an appreciation of the importance of these life skills and understand the responsibility and expectations held about representing their school. For more information on the Sports Premium click below. The school employs a specialist teacher to co-ordinate this subject area and uses other specialist teachers and coaches. We aim to provide regular after school experiences/ clubs in a range of sports and activities that we cannot always include in the curriculum and may encourage new interests and future participation.
Learning French in Key Stage 2 provides the pupils with an insight into another culture, deepening their understanding of the world, as well as beginning to enable pupils to communicate practically both in speaking and in writing. Our aim in French is to ensure that all pupils develop a good understanding of written and spoken French; speak with increased confidence and fluency and; write the language at varying lengths for different purposes and audiences. These aims will be taught through different topic areas such as: family and daily life, food and drink, shopping, school, travel and holidays using a variety of methods and activities including games, music and film. The school employs a specialist French teacher who uses resources and schemes of work from The Primary Languages Network. *
RE in our school is given in line with the County Agreed Syllabus. The religious education is moralistic and broadly Christian, including general beliefs and concepts of a range of faith communities. If you do not wish your child to receive such lessons, however general, please contact Ruth Elstone, head teacher. If required your child will be able to work with another member of staff whilst Religious Education is taking place. For further information on the content and when its taught. Each term children will experience one unit of RE and one unit of PHSE *
Every day the whole school gathers together in the school hall for an assembly and an act of worship from 10.15 -10.35 am. We aim to ensure that children experience “awe and wonder” during this time together - inspired by the world in which we live and encouraged to ask questions. We have a range of assembly themes - some linked to the RE curriculum and some to the SEAL curriculum. For details of our themes. On Fridays, children enjoy a Celebration Assembly where we focus on children that have been showing our values of Caring, Excelling, Enjoying and Inspiring.
If you do not wish your child to take part in the daily collective worship, please contact the headteacher, Mrs Ruth Elstone.
PSHE education is a programme of learning through which children and young people acquire the knowledge, understanding and skills they need to manage their lives now and in the future. As part of a whole-school approach, PSHE education develops the qualities and attributes pupils need to thrive as individuals, family members and members of society.
PSHE education equips pupils to live healthy, safe, productive, capable, responsible and balanced lives. It encourages them to be enterprising and supports them in making effective transitions, positive learning and in achieving economic wellbeing. A critical component of PSHE education is providing opportunities for children to reflect on and clarify their own values and attitudes and explore the complex and sometimes conflicting range of values and attitudes they encounter. PSHE education contributes to personal development by helping pupils to build their confidence, resilience and self-esteem, and to identify and manage risk, make informed choices and understand what influences their decisions. It enables them to recognise, accept and shape their identities, to understand and accommodate difference and change, to manage emotions and to communicate constructively in a variety of settings. Developing an understanding of themselves, empathy and the ability to work with others will help pupils to form and maintain good relationships, develop the essential skills for future employability and better enjoy and manage their lives. PSHE makes a significant contribution to pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural (SMSC) development, their behaviour and safety and the school’s statutory responsibility to promote pupils’ wellbeing. In addition the learning provided is essential to safeguarding pupils.
Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning (SEAL)
There are 5 broad social and emotional aspects of learning that are covered over a 2 year cycle.
- Self awareness
- Managing feelings
- Social skills
Within each of the social and emotional aspects of learning there are a number of individual skills (see below).
Social, emotional and behavioural skills underlie almost every aspect of school, home and community life, including effective learning and getting on with other people. The following topics will be covered:
Getting on and Falling Out
Say No to Bullying
Going for Goals
Good to be Me
Each year, children in Class 3 (Y5/6) experience The Real Love Rocks Programme from Barnardo’s which covers relationships, grooming and online safety. For more information visit the Real Love Rocks website: http://www.barnardosrealloverocks.org.uk/
It is not the policy of Bolton Primary School to teach sex education as a separate part of the curriculum. However, many aspects will be taught as part of regular topic work as seems appropriate e.g. Science.
When your pupil is a Y5 and Y6 they will received Sex Education with the other Y5 and 6s from cluster schools (for more information on the content taught - see below). You will be informed when this is to occur as you do have the right to withdraw your child from sex education lessons. If you wish to discuss this, please contact Ruth Elstone, Headteacher.
Special Educational Needs
We believe that all our children are entitled to have equal access to all the experiences provided by our school, all our children are entitled to experience our broad and balanced curriculum, and all our children should be given the opportunity to develop to their full potential. To achieve this, a need for extra support may arise because of social, development or educational factors or because a child may be exceptionally gifted. Therefore we have developed the following aims:
- We aim to identify children with Special Educational Needs as early as possible
- We aim to plan, implement and monitor the provision of Special Educational Needs through a partnership with parents and staff and consultation with external agencies and governors.
- We aim to fulfil Special Educational Needs in a caring, supportive atmosphere which promotes learning.
Our school is ideally suited to children with Special Educational Needs of whatever kind. As a small school we know all our children as individuals and this offers great benefits. * Otherwise individual needs will be accommodated for as they arise. See below for our SEN policy. *