ABout Our Curriculum
Our Million Dreams Curriculum Aims:
- Develop children’s knowledge, skills and understanding in all National Curriculum subjects, with a strong emphasis in phonics, reading and writing, as these underpin learning across all subjects, and ensure they are prepared for the next stage in their education.
- Develop resilience and independence, and support children to become self-regulated learners.
- Develop respect for themselves, their own community and communities of others.
- Enable children to become confident and curious learners.
- Fosters children’s self-esteem and support them to build positive relationships with others.
- Encourage children to respect the ideas, attitudes, values and feelings of others and be able to work alongside collaboratively.
- Promote kindness and empathy.
- Teach children to have an awareness of their own moral development, and to understand right from wrong.
- Promote inclusion, equality and diversity.
- Help children grow into responsible citizens who have a positive impact on their community.
Our Million Dreams Curriculum: Intent
Improving outcomes is the purpose of the school and is a shared commitment.
At Woodlands, we believe that our Million Dreams curriculum should empower all children to be outstanding in all that they do.
Ultimately, we want children to have a **big** dream for their future and to make a positive contribution to the exciting, diverse world that is waiting for them. We aim to prepare them to be responsible citizens and live successfully, modelling tolerance and acceptance in our multicultural society.
At the heart of what we do is a shared understanding that everyone has a responsibility to ensure every child is prepared for the next stage of their education. It is our privilege to be part of each child’s unique educational journey. All staff understand that this starts with excellent early years provision which develops children’s courage, curiosity and therefore, resilience. Our Early Years Curriculum is where we begin to establish the expectations of learning to encourage children to become confident and creative independent thinkers.
Designed and created by Woodlands teachers, Our Million Dreams curriculum is a knowledge-led, broad, balanced and challenging curriculum covering all National Curriculum subjects, for the children of the community we serve. Teachers carefully plan the interleaving of knowledge between subjects within overarching learning hooks, ensuring there is progression throughout the school, with the added benefit of links to previous and future knowledge.
At Woodlands, we recognise that reading is one of the most important ways to make a difference to children's life chances; therefore, it is embedded across the curriculum, through Learning To Read, Reading To Learn and Reading For Pleasure. To ensure every child is able to access the learning, communication and language, phonics, reading and handwriting also underpin the whole curriculum. Once reading and handwriting become automated, this helps to manage cognitive overload thus freeing up vital working memory space for pupils to transfer curriculum content into long term memory.
Within each subject discipline we aim to ensure children are taught to develop specific skills. For example, children are explicitly taught about sources of information through the eyes of a historian, or the importance of an enquiry based approach through the eyes of a scientist. Children have frequent and targeted retrieval practice which helps move core content from short term memory into long term. Furthermore, children are invited to take ownership of their learning through curriculum co-construction opportunities, such as planning how they want to learn, which can enthuse and motivate them.
Our Million Dreams Curriculum: Implementation
Overarching hooks for learning have been carefully developed and planned to motivate and engage our children. We have given them exciting names to help promote inquisitiveness whilst giving clues as to content. They are underpinned by subject specific drivers each term with an appropriate balance of knowledge, skills and progression to enable children to make greater sense of their learning and next steps.
In addition, we have mini topics covering a variety of themes, for example: our local area, religious festivals, Black History Month, Anti-Bullying week etc. Our curriculum meets the needs of all our children whilst complying with our duties in the National Curriculum 2014, The Early Years Curriculum, the Equality Act 2010 and The Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014.
‘Hands on’ experiences such as trips, workshops and access to visitors linked to the curriculum, are well planned to enrich the children’s experiences.
Some examples of overarching hooks for learning
Nursery - Going On A Journey and All Creatures Great and Small
Reception -Marvellous Me! and Come Outside
Year 1 - Land and Seas and Paws, Claws and Whiskers
Year 2 - Dear Diary and Rumble in the Jungle
Year 3 - Terrific Tremors and Scrumdiddliumptious
Year 4 - Potions, Burps and Bottom Bile and I am Warrior!
Year 5 - Hello, This is Planet Earth and When is a Lake not a Lake?
Year 6 - Bombz, Blitz and Bristol and Darwin’s Delightful Beast Creator
Our curriculum offer is underpinned by ensuring children are successful learners and have a belief in themselves through our Character Education programme that begins in Early Years.
The curriculum is regularly reviewed through staff training sessions, and increasingly with other stakeholders including governors, parents and pupils. The implementation in the classroom is regularly monitored by both senior and subject leaders through lesson drop ins, book looks, staff and pupil voice, for example. Subject leaders use curriculum progression documents to support teaching and learning.
Knowledge organisers are used to evaluate and assess learning throughout the unit. Children have opportunities to share their learning through a variety of means including writing, double page spreads and other self chosen methods.
We work hard to improve the implementation of the curriculum. Here are teaching and support staff discussing disciplinary knowledge in History,
Our Million Dreams Curriculum: Impact
We know our knowledge rich curriculum is successful because we regularly assess progress against age-appropriate descriptors. Our curriculum enables the skills and breadth of content for children to make links to the next year group, the next stage of their education and for life beyond. Acquiring subject specific vocabulary ,as well as more generic vocabulary, will allow them to build links and enhance their learning across other subjects. We strongly believe that deeper knowledge will give our children the confidence to join conversations, which in turn will enable greater access to the wider world.
Children will leave Woodlands with a sense of pride in themselves, their learning and the role they have played in the community at Woodlands.