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Curriculum overview

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Termly leaflets

Our school has a broad and balanced curriculum which we aim to make challenging, interesting and enjoyable, fostering a desire to achieve and ensuring all our pupils have the opportunity to achieve their potential.  Our pupils’ learning is sequential and builds on their prior knowledge.  Your child’s time at primary school is spent in three stages:

  • Early Years Foundation Stage – Reception year
  • Key Stage One – years one and two
  • Key Stage Two  – years three to six

Early Years Foundation Stage

The Foundation Stage has seven areas of learning which lead towards the subjects of the National Curriculum.   They are:

  • Personal Social & Emotional Development
  • Communication & Language
  • Literacy
  • Expressive arts & design
  • Mathematics
  • Understanding of the world
  • Physical development

We believe children learn best in the Early Years Foundation Stage when:

  • much of the learning is through doing
  • there are opportunities to learn both indoors and out
  • there is a balance of child initiated and adult directed activities
  • children are encouraged to be independent
  • areas of learning (subjects) are linked
  • everyone is valued
  • achievements are celebrated
  • parents are partners in the learning process

Key Stages One and Two

From year one to year six, Welwyn St Mary’s curriculum takes the framework of the  National Curriculum as a minimum.  We supplement this by tailor making to our children’s specific needs and building in rich resources of our locality.    All children study five core subjects:

  • English
  • Maths
  • Science
  • Religious Education (R.E.)
  • Computing

and seven foundation subjects:

  • Design and technology
  • History
  • Geography
  • Music
  • Art
  • Physical Education (P.E.)
  • Personal, Social and Health Education

We place great emphasis on enabling children to acquire the basic skills of reading, writing and numeracy.  We believe that all children should have opportunities to explore a broad, rich curriculum and enjoy the arts – music, drama, dance and art.  Welwyn St Mary’s is an Activemark School: this recognises our commitment to Physical Education in the curriculum and in extra-curricular activities.  We also hold a Music Mark which acknowledges our rich provision in music.

The curriculum is taught using a variety of methods.  Children are provided with opportunities to work as an individual, with a partner or in a group of three or four children.  In much of our work in English and maths, the class is taught as a whole group together.  The children may be grouped according to ability and this setting sometimes extends across the year group in Key Stage 2 so the children are working alongside those with similar understanding and skills.   Teaching staff meet regularly to plan for all the children in the year group to ensure there is continuity between the classes and year group progression.

Throughout the school we encourage:

  • the pursuit of excellence
  • co-operation with each other in a variety of class activities
  • pride in their work and its presentation
  • a desire to learn
  • questioning minds through investigative work
  • opportunities for discussion about personal experiences
  • a sense of initiative and independent thought
  • confidence in personal achievements and pleasure in achievement by others