At William Harding we aim to ensure that our curriculum meets the needs of our pupils, is engaging, memorable and inspiring. Please read below to find out about our Foundation Subject curriculum.
Knowledge Rich Curriculum
At William Harding we want to ensure that our curriculum is not only tailored to our pupils’ interests and needs but also ensures they are ready for life in the wider world.
We have recently reviewed our curriculum and are currently working with the Knowledge Schools Trust’s primary curriculum team to ensure that our curriculum for History, Geography and Art is a carefully sequenced, knowledge-rich curriculum which aims to inspire pupils, promote excellent outcomes for all and overcome inequality of opportunity.
What is a Knowledge Rich Curriculum?
A knowledge-rich curriculum at William Harding;
· places powerful knowledge at the heart of the curriculum
· content is carefully chosen
· organised in a coherent way, ensuring it builds from year to year
· cumulative, constructing firm foundations from which children can build conceptual understanding and skills over time
· Is an entitlement for every child, regardless of background
· Coherent and ensures that teaching does not jump from topic to topic, but enables children to develop knowledge and a love of learning
We have focused our review on what content should be taught, in what order, and reflected upon what children remember and how they remember it. Importantly, findings from cognitive science are beginning to influence practice in the classroom. The Primary Knowledge Curriculum has been developed in line with current thinking on how children learn.
An essential element of a knowledge curriculum is the development of a broad and rich vocabulary, and the ambitious and explicit teaching of this. The vocabulary content of the Primary Knowledge Curriculum has been planned with the purpose of addressing the ‘word gap’ for children who enter school with a limited vocabulary.
We are currently working with the Knowledge Schools Trust in a pilot to share the Primary Knowledge Curriculum through training and professional development opportunities focussed on history, geography and art. Our Senior leaders worked with the PKC Curriculum Leader to highlight areas of strength and areas for improvement and identified clear next steps and support with action planning. Our staff have also visited one of the KST schools to witness the PKC in action as well as undertaking Insets and staff meetings led by the PKC Curriculum Leader. High quality CPD alongside, teacher text books to support teacher subject knowledge, detailed knowledge based planning and resources ensures that teachers are well equipped to deliver a high quality curriculum.
We use Knowledge Organisers as a tool that can be used for planning, teaching, learning and assessment. They show all the essential knowledge, the most vital, useful and ‘powerful’ knowledge on a single page. This is shared with pupils and parents at the beginning of an unit so they all know what they are going to be learning. It helps them to remember key dates, key people, key events, vocabulary and definitions, key concepts and helps them to be successful learners.
Click here to see more information about Knowledge Organisers. These can be found in the Class Information section of the website in each year group.
Aims of such an education for our pupils;
· knowledgeable about content and the world around them
· transform their minds so that they are able to make reasonable and informed judgements
· ensure they can engage fruitfully in conversation and debate
· confidence that comes from possessing a store of essential knowledge and the skills
· to have that sub-set of knowledge – and the accompanying vocabulary – that will maximize their chances of leading rich and fulfilling lives
Modern Foreign Language(MFL) – French
Learning a foreign language provides an opening to other cultures. Our French language curriculum fosters pupils’ curiosity and deeps their understanding of the world. Teaching enables pupils to begin to communicate in another language and develops to encourage them to express their ideas and thoughts in another language and to understand and respond to its speakers, both in speech and in writing. It will also provide opportunities for them to communicate for practical purposes, learn new ways of thinking and read some literature in the original language. French language teaching provides the foundation and desire for learning further languages.
Our French language curriculum ensures that all pupils have the opportunity to understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic sources; speak with increasing confidence, fluency and spontaneity; find ways of communicating what they want to say, including through discussion and asking questions, and continually improving the accuracy of their pronunciation and intonation; write at varying length, for different purposes and audiences, using the variety of grammatical structures that they have learnt, and discover and develop an appreciation of a range of writing in French.
Increasingly, research is showing that high-quality music lessons have a significant, positive impact on a child’s intellectual, social, emotional and physical development. According to the Music Education Council, “The benefits are greatest when musical activities start early and continue over a long period of time.”
Singing and active music-making are the core of music experience and understanding, and have been shown to benefit concept formation, abstract thought, memory, linguistic development, spatial awareness and co-ordination, as well as creativity and confidence.
At William Harding we work alongside The Voices Foundation who are are a national charity which use the power of singing to improve the lives of children and young people in the UK. Their mission is to ensure no child is left out when it comes to learning to be a musician. This is an effective, practical and powerful way of teaching Music, from Early Years through to Year 6. It is based on a sound understanding of child development, so that children learn musical skills and concepts naturally and progressively, by engaging in hands-on musical activities and singing games. It is proven that when children engage in high quality regular musical learning from a young age there are musical, intellectual, emotional and social advantages. The musical skills and concepts are practiced in a variety of ways to suit individual needs and learning styles, so that musical literacy and the benefits of music training are accessible to all children, including those with special educational needs.
VF helps to;
get singing in every classroom
empower teachers and staff with skills and confidence
support the music lead to set up high quality choirs and singing assemblies
provide high quality resources to support school music
We are taking part in the following VF programmes;
This approach complies with curriculum expectations for excellence in Music, as set out in the Department of Education’s National Plan for Music Education and conforms to our prevailing understanding of best pedagogical practice.
Please follow the links that may be of interest;
Our high-quality physical education curriculum inspires all pupils to succeed and excel in competitive sport and other physically-demanding activities. We will provide opportunities for pupils to become physically confident in a way which supports their health and fitness. Opportunities will be provided to compete in sport and other activities that build character and help to embed values such as fairness and respect.
Our physical education curriculum will ensure that all pupils develop competence to excel in a broad range of physical activities; are physically active for sustained periods of time; engage in competitive sports and activities and lead healthy, active lives.
Religious Education (RE)
Our aim at William Harding is to challenge all our pupils to think. We aim to ensure all pupils have time to reflect on their beliefs, values and attitudes and their place and role in the world we are creating. We support our pupils in understanding the beliefs of others and the importance of respecting them.
At William Harding School we believe that RE is important because:
· It helps pupils understand the world they live in by developing their religious literacy;
· It helps them develop skills in recognising , handling and analysing the big questions and concepts that arise from experience and help make sense of life
· It provides the opportunities for and develops their ability to reflect on experience;
· It develops debating, reasoning, self-expression, relationships and self-understanding;
· It helps with the their literacy, creativity, personal development and critical thinking;
· It helps their understanding of identity and their search for meaning, purpose and value.
· It helps our school with its ethos and values; which help develop a sense of community and belonging whilst believing positive relationships for learning and behaviour.
At William Harding we follow the Buckinghamshire Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education. This is supported by Discovery R.E. which adopts an enquiry based approach to teaching and learning. Christianity is taught in every year group, with Christmas and Easter given new treatment each year to develop learning in a progressive way. Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Sikhism are also covered. Humanist perspectives are added when appropriate. Each session has a learning objective which shows the learning over the enquiry and SMSC development opportunities are mapped throughout as is each contribution to the British Values agenda.
We aim to provide our children with the best possible academic education, and to help them reach their full potential, whilst also ensuring that they are happy and well-rounded individuals. We want our children to be active, reflective learners with learning skills which will set them up for life and to share in an ongoing dialogue with their teachers about their learning. We want our children to be imbued with a genuine spirit of inquiry.
Children are encouraged to take responsibility of their own learning journey; they are able to evaluate their work and understand where and how to make progress. Throughout the computing curriculum, we encourage parents to be involved with their child’s learning, so they too understand their child’s strengths and areas for improvement.
Children are taught by their class teacher wherever possible and will participate in one hour’s lesson per week either conducted in our recently modernised computer suite or using laptops and other devices in their own classrooms.
Our curriculum is dynamic, progressive and fluid. We will always make adjustments to meet the needs of year groups, classes and individual children. It has been put together with the National Curriculum in mind, and is broad, balanced, and designed to engage, challenge and inspire our children.
Children have fun in their learning. We encourage them to think, ask questions and solve problems. We provide pupils with the knowledge and tools to become independent learners through an enquiry-based approach that encourages thinking and in which pupils are actively involved.
In computing, we focus on the ‘how’ and the ‘why,’ the underlying concepts, rather than simply giving the answer. At William Harding, we feel that a high-quality computing education equips pupils to use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world. Computing has deep links with mathematics, science, and design and technology, and provides insights into both natural and artificial systems. The core of computing is computer science, in which pupils are taught the principles of information and computation, how digital systems work, and how to put this knowledge to use through programming. Building on this knowledge and understanding, pupils are equipped to use information technology to create programs, systems and a range of content. Computing also ensures that pupils become digitally literate – able to use, and express themselves and develop their ideas through, information and communication technology – at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.
The national curriculum for computing aims to ensure that all pupils: can understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, logic, algorithms and data representation. Children will be taught to analyse problems in computational terms, and have repeated practical experience of writing computer programs in order to solve such problems. They will also be taught to evaluate and apply information technology, including new or unfamiliar technologies, analytically to solve problems.
We support our pupils to keep safe and know how to do so. In Key stage 1, pupils will be taught to use technology safely and respectfully, keeping personal information private; identify where to go for help and support when they have concerns about content or contact on the internet or other online technologies. In Key stage 2 pupils will be taught to use technology safely, respectfully and responsibly; recognise acceptable/unacceptable behaviour; identify a range of ways to report concerns about content and contact. Our pupils in the summer term in upper KS2 will have the opportunity to learn CAD and use 3D printer technology.
Design and Technology
At William Harding we work with guidance from the Design and Technology Association. Design and Technology helps us to teach Maths and English and other subjects in a fun manner and put these subjects into context making them easier to digest and more understandable.
We believe Design and Technology gives children the opportunity to develop skills, knowledge and understanding of designing and making functional products. We feel 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.
There are two main elements of Design Technology – learning about the world we live in and the way things work, and learning to design, make and evaluate functional products for a particular person or user. Design Technology is often one of a child’s favourite lessons because it is a ‘hands-on’ subject where they can make their own decisions, test out ideas, take risks and produce their very own quality product which they are extremely proud of.
Our aim is to ensure that children leave our school with a range of practical life skills; that they learn how to solve real problems; that they understand the effect of products on people and the environment and most of all they have recognise and develop their own creativity.
Linking Design Technology with other curriculum areas really brings learning to life. We provide exciting projects which allow opportunities for children to develop not only their designing and making skills but also literacy, maths, art, IT and science skills. For example children develop their knowledge and understanding of properties of materials which helps in science and the practice of measuring accurately helps in maths.
We are lucky enough to have a Dye-Sublimation Printer in school which enables us to use IT to create designs and logos and print them onto a range of products. This is used as part of a Year 6 DT club and will eventually be used for mini enterprise projects and other projects throughout the school. This printer is situated in our new practical room – a wonderful purpose built room where children can use a range of tools and materials.