Curriculum Overview 2020-21
Amble Links First School – Curriculum Statement 2020-21
Amble Links First School offers a curriculum that is balanced and broadly based. Our curriculum promotes the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils at the school and prepares pupils for the opportunities and responsibilities and experiences of later life. Within all of our teaching we aim to use an approach that employs 'Bloom's Taxonomy' to increase the depth of learning by asking the children to apply what they have learnt in a range of different ways.
Our school curriculum comprises all learning and other experiences that we plan for our pupils. The National Curriculum forms one part of the school curriculum. We are legally required to follow the statutory National Curriculum which sets out in Programmes of study, on the basis of key stages, subject content for those subjects taught to all pupils. In September 2014 we began using the new National Curriculum (click here for more information). Summaries of the statutory requirements (from Rising Stars) for each year group are available to download below.
We make provision for a daily act of worship and teach religious education at every key stage.
We make provision for personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE) throughout our school curriculum and deliver much of our PSHE and RSE through the Jigsaw 3-11 programme.
We deliver the National Curriculum through a mainly project based approach which allows us to make strong links between subjects and deepen pupils’ knowledge and understanding. Our projects may vary in length and are planned to be stimulating and exciting for all groups of pupils.
Everything we do at Amble Links is guided by our School Vision and our 3 R’s of being Responsible, Resilient and Respectful. All of this will support our children in becoming successful learners and good citizens. These naturally promote British Values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty and mutual respect and tolerance of those with different faiths and beliefs. These are evident throughout our taught curriculum and the wider school curriculum. Examples include: our elected school council, visits from local councillors as part of Local Democracy Week, regular visits from uniformed services such as the Police and Fire Service, clear expectations for our pupils’ behaviour, Anti-Bullying accreditation, visits to and visitors from different faith communities and a comprehensive assembly programme that addresses a range of themes and issues.
We are particularly proud that pupils from Amble Links First School have won the Amble and Warkworth Young Citizen’s Award for 6 out of the 10 years it has been running.
Our English Co-ordinator is Mrs Emma Oliver.
The purpose of English in the National Curriculum is to teach pupils to write and speak fluently so that they can communicate their ideas and emotions to others and through their reading and listening, others can communicate with them. Our curriculum aims promote high standards of literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word and to develop a love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment.
At Amble Links First School English is taught as an integral part of our topic based curriculum. Through these topics, pupils will learn to read and write through a variety of fiction, non-fiction and poetry texts. Phonics, spelling punctuation, grammar and handwriting, as well being part of every lesson, will be taught discretely at specific times each week. In Early Years and Year 1 READ WRITE INC is the main tool that we use to deliver this. English teaching is supported by ‘Literacy and Language’ for older pupils although teachers tailor lessons to the children’s interests, abilities and the topics that they are working on.
We strongly focus on developing our pupils into confident, fluent and independent readers. Our school reading scheme, the core of which is Read Write Inc and Oxford Reading Tree, draws from a range of other schemes to capture the range of abilities and interests of our pupils. Our reading scheme and library encourages pupils’ independence in choosing the texts that they wish to read at their ability levels. Guided reading and writing sessions target small groups with specific objectives to ensure good progress of all pupils.
Overviews of Literacy teaching in Years 2, 3 & 4 are available to download at bottom of this page.
Our Maths Co-ordinator is Mrs Julie Kelly
The purpose of Mathematics in the National Curriculum is to provide children with a foundation for understanding the world and to have the ability to reason mathematically. Our Curriculum for mathematics aims to ensure that all pupils become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics, reason mathematically and can solve problems by applying their mathematics to a variety of situations.
At Amble Links First School Maths is taught on a daily basis from Year 1 to Year 4. Pupils in Y1-Y4 also complete daily independent maths challenges using differentiated Schofield and Sims books.
Maths in KS1 and KS2 is taught using White Rose Maths Schemes of Learning to give us a clear progression to follow in case a blended learning approach is needed. Every lesson includes opportunities for the children to deepen their understanding of the concept being taught through reasoning and problem solving challenges. Arithmetic and Reasoning in all year groups consists of number and place value; addition and subtraction; multiplication and division; and fractions.
Across Early Years, all children have access to a maths rich environment both indoors and outdoors. Opportunities of problem solving are addressed in our day-to-day routines.
As part of the Early Years curriculum, the children in Nursery are regularly accessing maths activities within the environment linked to number, shape, space and measure.
In Reception, children are also following White Rose Maths Schemes of Learning which allows for a blended learning approach if needed. The schemes of learning provide opportunities for enhancements to areas of learning. Adult led activities are set according to individual needs. Evidence of children's learning both adult led and independent are shared with parents via Tapestry.
Yearly overviews of maths teaching objectives for Years 1 to 4 are available to download below.
Our Maths Calculation Policy provides further information about our approaches to teaching mathematics through concrete, pictorial and abstract methods.
Our Science Co-ordinator is Miss Kate Warren
The purpose of science education in the National Curriculum is to provide the foundations for understanding the world through biology, chemistry and physics. Children should be encouraged to understand how science can be used to explain what is occurring, predict how things will behave, and analyse causes. The aims of the National Curriculum are that all pupils develop scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding, develop understanding of the nature, processes and methods of science and that they are equipped with the scientific knowledge required to understand the uses and implications of science, today and for the future.
At Amble Links First School the relevant programmes of study are taught for each key stage. Sometimes science is linked directly to the current topic being taught; for example, as part of their topic about Romans the children may investigate which materials are best for making Roman tools or use electrical circuits to make lighthouses during a topic about the coast. Science takes place weekly and is taught through a 'dual planning' approach. This means children learn skills and apply these skills across the curriculum. By using this approach we aim to deepen pupils’ understanding of how science is linked to the real world as well as providing more opportunities for writing across the curriculum.
Art and Design
Our Art and Design Co-ordinator is Miss Kate Warren
The purpose of art and design in the National Curriculum is to engage, inspire and challenge pupils, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to experiment, invent and create their own pieces of art, craft and design as well as thinking critically about their work. The aims of the National Curriculum are to ensure that all pupils produce creative work; become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other techniques; use the language of art to evaluate and analyse creative works; and know about great artists, craft makers and designers and understand the historical and cultural developments of their art forms.
At Amble Links First School art and design is an integral part of our topic based approach to delivering the curriculum. Skills and techniques are taught within relevant topics; for example, during a topic entitled ‘Supertato, Super Me' the Year 1 children create sculptural portraits using fruits and vegetables in the style of Arcimboldo. In Year 4 children work with a local felt artist or create their own felted rainforest scene.
Our Computing Co-ordinator is Mr Paul Heeley
The purpose of computing in the national Curriculum is to equip pupils to use computational thinking and creativity to understand and change the world. The core of computing is computer science in which the children are taught how digital systems work and put this knowledge to use through programming to create programs, systems and content. Computing ensures that pupils become digitally literate and develop their ideas through information and communication technology to prepare them for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world. The aims of computing in the National Curriculum include the children understanding and using algorithms, writing computer programs, and become responsible, competent, confident and creative users of ICT.
At Amble Links First School pupils in Year 1 to Year 4 take part in a weekly discrete computing lesson which, wherever appropriate, is linked to the topic that the children are studying. Our pupils are strongly encouraged to use ICT to support their learning at all times; this may be through easy access to Ipads in the classrooms or regular access to computers in our ICT Suite at break times and at after school clubs. The school provides pupils with access to a range of additional online resources including School360, Purple Mash, Mathletics and Curriculum Visions. Teaching of computing is supported by Northumberland County Council’s ‘Teaching Computing in the Primary School’ document.
Staying safe whilst using ICT and online is an integral part of Computing lessons and is supported by half termly lessons based on SWGfL’s ‘Digital Literacy and Citizenship’ programme.
Design and Technology
Our Design Technology Co-ordinator is Mrs Debbie Smith
The purpose of Design and Technology in the National Curriculum is for pupils to use creativity and imagination to design and make products and solve real and relevant problems. The curriculum aims to ensure that all pupils develop expertise to perform everyday tasks confidently in an increasingly technological world by having the skills to design, make and evaluate and test as well as having an understanding and the ability to apply the principles of nutrition and learn how to cook.
At Amble Links First School Design and Technology is an integral part of our topic based approach to delivering the curriculum and will be taught at appropriate points of the year with strong links to other subjects; for example, when learning about the ‘Rotten Romans’ the children may design and make their own war machines or use electrical circuits to help make a model lighthouse when learning about ‘The Seaside’.
Our Geography Co-ordinator is Mrs Emma Oliver
The purpose of Geography in the National Curriculum is to inspire curiosity and fascination about the world and its people. The curriculum aims to ensure that pupils develop knowledge of location of globally significant places and understand the processes that give rise to physical and human geographical features. The curriculum aims for pupils to become competent at collecting, analysing and communicating data, interpret a range of sources of information including through the use of maps.
At Amble Links First School Geography is an integral part of our topic based approach to delivering the curriculum and will be taught at appropriate points of the year with strong links to other subjects. Some topics we teach such as ‘Amazing Amazon’ in Year 4 and ‘Islands and Lighthouses’ in Year 2 are Geography focused topics although many aspects of geography will also be taught through other topics such as the Year 3 ‘Rotten Romans’ topic.
Our History Co-ordinator is Mrs Julie Kelly
The purpose of History in the national Curriculum is to encourage children to gain knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. We aim to inspire their curiosity to find out about the past and teach them the necessary skills to find and evaluate evidence to answer their questions. This will lead to them to begin making connections and comparisons between events they know about and life in modern times. We place a strong emphasis on learning key subject and topic based vocabulary. To support the children to build their knowledge and apply that knowledge as skills we use the 'Essential Milestones'.
- To investigate and interpret the past
- To understand Chronology
- To build an overview of world history
- To communicate historically
At Amble Links First School History is an integral part of our topic based approach to delivering the curriculum and will be taught at appropriate points of the year with strong links to other subjects. Some topics we teach such as ‘WWII’ in Year 4 and ‘Stone Age’ in Year 3 are History focused topics although some aspects of history will also be taught through other topics such as the Year 1 ‘My Island Home’ topic which will focus on the historical figure of Grace Darling.
Our Languages Co-ordinator is Mrs Julie Kelly
The purpose of learning foreign languages is to provide an opening to other cultures and deepen pupils’ understanding of the world. The curriculum aims to ensure that pupils understand and respond to spoken and written language from a variety of authentic sources.
At Amble Links First School pupils are encouraged to appreciate and use a range of languages from early on (for example by answering the register in a language other than English). In Years 3 and 4 we begin to teach the children basic spoken and written vocabulary and phrases to support the teaching of modern languages as they move to Middle School. We have chosen French to be the main language we teach as this is the main language taught in the school most of our pupils move to. French will be taught in a short block sessions each half term. We will be using the internet based resources 2Simple French which pupils will also have access to at home through Purple Mash.
Our Music Co-ordinator is Miss Wendy Morton
The purpose of Music in the National Curriculum is to engage and inspire pupils to develop a love of music and their talents as musicians therefore increasing self-confidence, creativity and a sense of achievement. The curriculum aims for all pupils to perform, listen to and review music; learn to sing and use their own voices to create and compose music; and understand the dimensions of music including pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture structure and appropriate musical notations.
At Amble Links First School we use the web-based ABC Creative Music scheme to support our music teaching. Along with this, children also take part in weekly singing lessons.
Music lessons in Year 4 are led by a specialist music teacher from Music Partnership North with a focus on weekly singing lessons. The children also take part in a weekly singing lesson.
If you require any further guidance on the work of Music Partnership North then please contact the office on 01670 624045.
Our PE Co-ordinators are Mr Paul Heeley and Mrs Josie Goodfellow
The purpose of Physical Education in the National Curriculum is to inspire all pupils to success and excel in competitive sport and other demanding activities which in turn support health and fitness. The curriculum aims for pupils to develop competence to excel in a broad range of physical activities, be physically active for sustained periods of time, engage in competitive sports and activities and lead healthy, active lives.
At Amble Links First School we pupils take part in a weekly swimming lesson as well as a weekly PE lesson. More detail about our PE provision and how we spend our additional PE and Sport funding can be found here.
Our RE Co-ordinator is Miss Wendy Morton
At Amble Links First School we teach Religious Education (RE) on a weekly basis. RE teaching is in line with the locally agreed syllabus. We use the Discovery Religious Education Scheme of work to support delivery of RE. RE teaching is broadly Christian but takes into account the principles and practices of other principal religions represented in Britain and around the world. Pupils take part in a daily act of Collective Worship that often include visitors from a range of faiths to support our RE teaching.
Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education (PSHE) Relationships and Sex Education (RSE)
Our PSHE/ RSE Co-ordinator is Miss Louise Lightley.
PSHE Education offers learning opportunities and experiences which reflect the increasing independence and physical and social awareness of learner. They learn skills to develop effective relationships, assume greater personal responsibility and keep themselves safe.
At Amble Links First School our pupils are given opportunities in PSHE, lessons and assemblies where we use the acclaimed Jigsaw scheme of work to develop confidence, self- motivation and an understanding of their rights and responsibilities within our diverse society. We also deliver our Sex, Relationship and Health education programme through Jigsaw alongside other curriculum subjects such as Science and Computing.
We teach PSHE in a variety of ways, as a discrete subject, through Jigsaw lessons, via whole school and class assemblies, and through other subjects included in our creative curriculum, as well as through outdoor educational visits, community work and activities.
Many aspects of PSHE are covered through our everyday work, acts of collective worship as well as within our taught curriculum. Our collective worship timetable includes weekly assemblies which have strong PSHE links and cover subjects such as British Values, enterprise and citizenship.