Curriculum Overview & Statement of Intent
Here at St.Michael's, we have an exciting curriculum, following the National Curriculum, which focuses on knowledge, skills and understanding. This page will provide you with all the information that you will need regarding the topics each year group learn about. If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.
Curriculum Statement of Intent
Morals and values framework and ethos of the school statement
Our Community Statement, ENRICHING LIVES EVERY DAY’ is key to the development of our Christian environment and ethos.
This statement, inspired by the Apostle Paul:
“For in Him you have been enriched in every way, with all kinds of speech and with all knowledge.” 1 Corinthians 1-5, provides a foundation of Christian expectation and is integral in the teaching and learning of Religious Education for the children in our care, and can be witnessed though our school values, which are:
Excellence; Nurture; Respect; Integrity; Compassion; Hope (ENRICH)
We aim to:
- have integrity in all that we do, ensuring that the school is true to its Christian foundation. This will guide and inform everything that we do.
- nurture our children physically, emotionally and spiritually; encouraging them to be curious, inspiring them with a love of learning.
- Provide our children with a wonderful sense of hope that will prepare them well for life.
- ensure that our children are provided with every opportunity to achieve excellence every day; so that their confidence and willingness to succeed will grow with every achievement, enabling them to fulfil their true potential.
- provide opportunities for children to develop life skills, encouraging them to respect others, show compassion and understand the importance of maintaining good relationships.
- We place great emphasis on the personal, spiritual, physical, moral and social development of our children through Christian teaching and the provision of Christian adult role models; standing by our values of excellence, nurture, respect, integrity, compassion and hope.
- We provide a safe, positive, stimulating and caring environment which promotes the development of the child.
- We are witnesses to the truths and values of the school’s Christian foundation
As a school in St Christopher’s Trust, we are committed to building flourishing communities. Through a rich curriculum and high-quality teaching, we strive to:
- Support children’s wellbeing
- Secure children’s active and enthusiastic engagement in their learning
- Encourage and promote respectful relationships
- Enable children to become active local, national and global citizens
- Celebrate culture and community
- Facilitate pupils in exploring, knowing, understanding and making sense of the world
Our priority is the wellbeing of pupils and ensuring that we quickly re-establish attitudes and dispositions to learning. We seek to do this through the PSHE curriculum, and the implementation of the statutory RSE and health education, especially those component parts that most support children’s self-regulation and attitudes to learning. In addition, we will support those pupils more adversely affected by COVID through more individual and personalised interventions. All staff have been trained in trauma informed approaches.
Into the woods
How have toys changed over time?
What is it like to grow up in Heavitree?
Where does my food come from?
What does it take to be a great explorer?
How do we keep fit and healthy?
|Who is the greatest history maker?|
How does Borneo compare to England?
How does Roald Dahl use plants in his stories?
Why don't penguins need to fly?
Where is the best place to visit on holiday?
Forces and magnets
Why don’t shadows appear at night?
How do we know about life in the past?
What’s beneath our feet?
Vertebrate or invertebrate: that’s the question?
Why are insects important to our world?
How has your local area changed?
Why did people settle by the River Nile?
How do electrical circuits work?
What was life like in Roman Britain?
How can we classify things?
What is a river?
Where does chocolate come from?
What happens inside of us?
(one-week mini topic)
One small step for year 5
(Earth and Space)
What was life like after the Romans?
What would have enabled Scott to succeed?
How can we live more sustainably?
Would you rather be a Viking or an Anglo-Saxon?
Why did the Mayans change the way they lived?
Why do some creatures no longer exist?
Things aren’t always what they seem!
What did the ancient Greeks do for us?
What’s good for my body and what’s not?
How do natural disasters affect people?
How did WW2 Affect Exeter?
How has electricity benefitted us?
This overview shows the focussed learning that is covered within this unit.
Pink: The Arts
Red: Design and Technology
At St Michael’s, we believe a rich web of knowledge is what provides the capacity for pupils to learn even more and develop their understanding. However, this does not preclude the importance of skill. Skills matter and cannot be separated from knowledge.
Knowledge and skill are intrinsically linked: skill is a performance built on what a person knows. That performance might be physical or cognitive, but skills matter and they cannot be separated from knowledge. They are the ‘know-how’ in applying the ‘known’.
Knowledge and the capacity it provides to apply skills and deepen understanding are, therefore, essential ingredients of successful curriculum design.
Breadth, balance and progression:
We believe that children are entitled to breadth, depth and balance, and to high standards across the entire curriculum.
At St Michael’s, we have ensured that our curriculum has been crafted by answering the following questions:
- What do we want pupils to know?
- Does our curriculum contain the appropriate knowledge in an order that supports the learning?
- Is the curriculum providing pupils with the building blocks of what they need to know and be able to do, in order to succeed in each subject?
- What skills will be demonstrated and how will progression will be demonstrated in these skills?
- What will independence in learning look like throughout the school?
- How will the curriculum coincide with our school values?
As such, we have introduced three types of knowledge organisers: a subject leader knowledge organiser, a teacher’s knowledge organiser and a child’s knowledge organiser.
Subject Leader Knowledge Organisers (for foundation subjects and those where we do not follow a scheme):
The purpose of these are to allow the subject leader to:
- Know how effectively that particular subject is being learned and being taught.
- Know how their subject progresses through the school and the standards that children should achieve at each stage, including what Greater Depth would like in that subject.
- Know which teachers lack confidence in those subjects and may require extra support.
- Be able to hold people to account.
- Be able to explain the knowledge that each child should gain; the skills, which they will employ; the vocabulary that they will use and the opportunities and experiences they will have, in order to combine knowledge, skills and understanding.
- Ensure children are working at the correct standard by sharing examples of ARE and GD work and using them to support monitoring purposes.
You will find these for each of the subjects (Music, Art, D and T, Computing, MFL, History, Geography), which don't follow a scheme by clicking here and then entering the specific subject page.
Teacher Knowledge Organisers: (Years 1- 6)
The purpose of these are to allow the class teacher, in conjunction with the subject leader, to consider:
- The knowledge that is needed in that unit and how it links back to previous learning in the school.
- The essential knowledge that has to be learned(purple) and the knowledge that could be learned if time allows(pink). This allows time to be spent developing the children’s depth of understanding as opposed to being moved on at undue pace.
- The activities the children are completing in order to develop their understanding, using both knowledge and skills.
These are currently being uploaded and will be here very soon! Sorry for any inconvenience.
Children's Knowledge Organisers
A ‘Child Knowledge Organiser’ is essentially for the child and is a go-to document for a unit of work. Each one identifies the key information that children need to have learned by the end of a topic. It also acts as a tool to support children in retaining and retrieving knowledge for life-long learning. We are developing our own 'Knowledge Organisers' to support the delivery of the curriculum, with each one containing a list of technical vocabulary with definitions. Depending on the topic, there may also be maps, dates, key figures and people’s beliefs. Each organiser will a quiz to help children recall the knowledge and encourage home-school links.
The effectiveness of our approach will be monitored through our robust cycle of monitoring teaching and learning, with a sharp focus on how the needs of our most vulnerable pupils are being met.
How Could Knowledge Organisers be Used at Home?
Question and Answer
Simply having another person test the pupils understanding of key terms, through asking questions is an effective way of developing their understanding of new knowledge and securing in the long term memory. A quick quiz during breakfast or on the way home from school, will help pupils remember key terminology they have been studying.
True or False
Playing true or false offers pupils the opportunities to check how well they understand the vocabulary they are studying. Particularly, when initially learning new vocabulary, pupils can focus too much on learning definitions off by heart. This activity really tests their overall understanding each term, as they have to state whether a definition is accurate. Asking pupils to then correct the misconception will improve their recall of that piece of knowledge.
If in Year 5 and 6, have your child create their own flashcards at home with the key information, definitions and vocabulary on. If in Year 3 and 4, you may need to support your children in creating the flashcards and completing this quizzing technique. Flashcards are one way pupils can learn, rehearse and remember key vocabulary that is taught in lessons. By writing the definition on one side and the key term on the other, it allows pupils to test themselves independently or with an adult. Pupils could try and recall the definition of a word, or read the definition and recall the term it relates to. We encourage pupils to learn a definition, however they should not feel it has to be word for word, as long as the definition they give suitably explains the term on the other side.
- Through high quality teaching, we will have closed gaps for all learners, but especially those who are disadvantaged.