At Oak Meadow Primary School, our intent is to provide a bespoke curriculum that offers exciting and meaningful learning opportunities that motivate, inspire and are based on our children’s likes and interests. Our school adopts a holistic approach to education and our curriculum is driven by 5 core values that aim to unlock every child’s intellectual, emotional, social, physical, artistic, creative and spiritual potential.
Our 5 core values are:
1. Express Yourself (creative me)
2. I see, I wonder (curious me)
3. Healthy Body, Healthy Mind (healthy me)
4. More than me (empathetic me)
5. Rise to the challenge (ambitious me)
Our Curriculum intent is underpinned by the National Curriculum and ensures that, at each stage of their learning journey, each child acquires a rich bank of knowledge and skills. We expose children to the best authors, artists, musicians etc. and make sure that learning is made memorable and committed to the long-term memory by repeating concepts, making links and building upon previous learning. We exploit every opportunity in all subjects to develop our children’s language acquisition and expose our children daily to challenging new vocabulary. Since we believe that reading opens the door for every child to succeed, we are determined that every child, by the end of their time at Oak Meadow will have a lifelong love of reading, and will be able to comprehend and read fluently.
We inform our children so that they are well equipped to lead both physically and emotionally healthy lives. Our curriculum teaches diversity so that our children appreciate, recognise and respect differences and treat others fairly and equally. Our motto states: ‘from tiny acorns mighty oaks grow’; this ethos is threaded throughout the whole curriculum and it is our intention and belief that every child will achieve irrespective of their background or starting point.
We aim to develop articulate, caring children with a thirst for knowledge who are resilient and not afraid to take risks with high aspirations and a belief that anything is possible through hard work and effort and it is our intent that parents are partners with their children in their learning journey. We also value the importance of using our curriculum to develop strong links with our local community.
At Oak Meadow we passionately believe that all children should have equal access to a broad and balanced curriculum. Ours is designed so that subject specific skills are taught within an exciting cross-curricular topic each term.
Hooks, enrichment activities and extra-curricular opportunities supplement each topic to enable our children to make connections in their learning and acquire a deep understanding. We teach our children that learning occurs everywhere, at all times, and utilise our outdoor grounds and our Forest School to enhance the curriculum wherever possible along with a wide range of extra-curricular clubs.
We believe that our school has a responsibility to develop cultural capital and teach our children the skills and knowledge that will enable them to succeed in life. Each year group has designed a bespoke Cultural Capital Journey whereby children take part in 50 activities linked to our 5 core values. Part of this Cultural Capital Journey is to use educational visits to provide rich learning experiences that make links with their learning in school. Residential visits in Year 2, Year 4 and Year 6 further enrich the curriculum as well as developing a sense of wellbeing beyond the classroom walls.
Our curriculum is separated into 4 key areas which are led by teams: Sport, Fitness and Health; Science Technology Engineering and Maths; Creative Arts and Culture and Mental Health and Wellbeing. Given that we value our children holistically, all four key areas are given an equal weighting with each team then driving the curriculum forward using the voice of the child to help them to action plan.
At Oak Meadow, we are committed to building emotionally resilient individuals. To help do this, we run the WELL programme (Wellbeing and Emotional Literacy Leaders). As children move through the school, they each complete the bronze, silver and gold awards for the Wellbeing passport. Each award covers Mental and Emotional Wellbeing, Physical and Personal Wellbeing and Social Wellbeing and this is threaded through our PSHE curriculum. Successful completion of each tier of the WELL award is celebrated in weekly achievement assemblies; this provides an opportunity to embed a culture of celebrating all achievements for every child not just academic gains and inspires children to work hard and recognise their talents and successes in all areas of their learning.
In our school, we believe that family and community engagement is key. We welcome families in to our school to work alongside their children through Come and Play sessions in Reception and curriculum enrichment projects in Key Stage 1 and 2. Themed weeks such as ‘A Million Dreams Art Week’ are a key feature of the curriculum which also help us to forge links with the local community and showcase our curriculum achievements giving our children a real sense of pride and personal achievement. As well as parents, we also welcome visitors from our community into school. Our ‘More Heroes Needed’ project saw real-life superheroes from the local community come into school to share their career paths; this helped to form high aspirations for the future and a strong belief that our children can achieve in all they do. In addition, we regularly invite poets, artists, governors, university lecturers and members of local faith establishments to work with our children to enrich their experiences. We are also committed to fund raising and community work and help local charities such as Spurgeons using the curriculum to generate donations led by children in our REACH team.
In reading, we teach VIPERS skills (Vocabulary, Inference, Prediction, Explanation, Retrieval and Summary) to cover the key skills children need to become great readers. To ensure the consistent teaching of phonics we use the Read Write Inc. Scheme. Children have access to high quality reading experiences through a well-stocked school reading library and teachers also ensure that children regularly read at home and in school using Oxford Owl’s Bug Club. We ensure that children who fall in the lowest 20% of each year group for their reading ability are monitored and supported rigorously to ensure that, by the end of Key Stage 2, all children can comprehend and read fluently.
In writing, children learn to become great writers through experiencing quality texts. As children move into Key Stage 2, they study a new book each term which they use to generate high quality writing opportunities. We teach writing through imitation, innovation and invention to a range of non-fiction and fiction genres. We link our writing context to our curriculum topics and aim wherever possible to find a real life purpose for children’s writing to enthuse them further. We explicitly teach cursive handwriting through the Nelson Thornes Handwriting Scheme.
In maths, children develop mathematical skills through a consistent mastery approach using the White Rose Maths Hub Scheme. They are taught mathematical concepts through a Concrete, Pictorial Abstract Approach and become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics through varied and frequent practice moving onto reasoning and problem solving.
Sport is recognised as an excellent tool in enabling physical and mental well-being and as a result we employ Sports Plus to deliver a robust and challenging PE curriculum to all children.
Our 5 core values drive the curriculum to ensure that our children are prepared for the future and able to succeed in life long term. They are tolerant, caring individuals with a strong moral conscience who are resilient to the influence of others and make decisions for the right reasons and in the best interests of their community and wider world. They take risks and are emotionally resilient recognising that we make mistakes and learn from them. Our children persevere and don’t give up. They dream big and have high aspirations fostered by the belief that with determination and hard work anything is possible. Through exciting curriculum design, pupils acquire a deep body of learning over time and make interconnected links to their prior knowledge.