The values underpinning everything we do in school are:
We also promote 'British Values', which are defined by the government as democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect and tolerance of different faiths and beliefs.
The curriculum at Crown Wood Primary School strives to promote the highest achievement by all pupils through a purposeful context and a 'hands on' approach that allows the children to find out about the world beyond their locality and personal experience. The aims of our school curriculum are:
- To enable all children to learn and develop their skills to the best of their ability;
- To promote a positive attitude towards learning, so that children enjoy coming to school, and acquire a solid basis for lifelong learning;
- To teach children the basic skills of English, mathematics and computing;
- To enable children to be creative and to develop their own thinking;
- To teach children about their developing world, including how their environment and society have changed over time;
- To enable children to be positive citizens in society;
- To teach children to have an awareness of their own spiritual development, and to understand right from wrong;
- To help children understand the importance of truth and fairness, so that they grow up committed to equal opportunities for all;
- To enable children to have respect for themselves and high self-esteem, and to be able to live and work co-operatively with others.
The Early Years / Foundation Stage (EYFS) Curriculum
The school uses the International Early Years Curriculum (IEYC), which is linked to 'Development Matters'. You can find out more about the IEYC here. Topics are planned based on the children's interests and change from year to year. For further, up to date, information, please see your child's Year Group Page.
A large part of the children’s time in school is spent learning English and Mathematics. There are daily Mathematics and English lessons, the latter supplemented by individual and whole class guided reading, phonics (in EYFS and KS1) and Handwriting sessions. We use the National Curriculum Programmes of Study as the basis for what we teach.
In Years 1-6, we use the '10 Day Writing Journey' to apprentice children into writing in different styles / genres / purposes for a range of audiences. This is a Trust wide approach to the teaching of writing.
The 10-Day Writing Journey is a phased approach that allows the children to be immersed in a) content knowledge, b) genre features and c) high quality examples. Our curriculum mapping accounts for teaching, rehearsal, forgetting, remembering and embedding within and across academic years. Each unit will always focus on one of the 4 main purposes of writing, with an appropriate genre/task:
- To entertain: Narrative, poem, character/setting description and, play script.
- To persuade: Speech, letter, advert and campaign.
- To inform: Newspaper, report, recount, biography and essay.
- To discuss: Balanced argument, newspaper and review.
A range of stimuli are used to inspire the children’s writing including high quality texts, film clips, practical activities, trips and visits as well as links to the International Primary Curriculum (IPC). The latter allows for purposeful cross-curricular writing and an opportunity to practice skills away from the teaching.
The specific teaching of grammar, punctuation, spelling and handwriting are key components of the teaching of writing. Children are expected to apply what they learn in ‘GaPS’ and handwriting lessons in their writing across the curriculum.
Reading is vital for future learning and the cornerstone of a child’s education. Our approach to teaching reading is designed to ensure every child becomes a competent reader for both information and pleasure. Reading should an enjoyable experience that allows children to develop their knowledge, vocabulary and imagination (i.e. through characters, places, times and events beyond their own experience).
In EYFS, children are exposed to pre-reading activities (e.g. songs, rhyming, being read to and looking at picture books) and phonics. The children are taught phonics using Read, Write, Inc (RWI) daily, alongside regular 1:1 guided sessions and story groups. In Year 2, phonics is consolidated and the children move to group and then whole class guided reading. In Years 3-6, reading is taught through whole class guided reading using high quality, relevant and challenging texts across a range of genres. Children below the expected standard or making slow progress receive additional 1:1 tuition until they catch up.
We use the Bug Club reading scheme supplemented by other banded books. Decodable books are available for Reception and Year 1. There are no 'free readers' - every child is working on a reading target to develop their decoding, comprehension and vocabulary skills. Readers are supported to develop stamina and speed and given multiple opportunities to respond to the texts they read.
Children are encouraged to read for pleasure through visits to the school library and the Summer Reading Challenge. Teachers are encouraged to read a class novel to their class.
Further information about our English curriculum can be found here: English Curriculum.
We use the White Rose Scheme to support our planning of Maths from Years 1 through to Year 6. This scheme promotes a deep understanding of mathematics through the Concrete – Pictorial – Abstract (CPA) approach and supports the development of fluency, reasoning and problem solving skills.
Children can find mathematics difficult because it is abstract. The CPA approach helps children learn new ideas and build on their existing knowledge by introducing abstract concepts in a more familiar and tangible way.
Children will travel along the CPA continuum repeatedly, revisiting previous stages when a concept is reinforced or extended. Consequently, concrete apparatus is available in every classroom to support children’s conceptual mathematical understanding. However, as the CPA approach also represents a progression, our aim is children are able to go beyond the use of concrete equipment and are regularly using either pictorial representations or abstract understanding by the end of Year 2.
We encourage the use of ‘low ceiling high threshold’ tasks in order to enable all children to have access to all levels of work and ensure that children are seated in mixed ability arrangements. Children are given the opportunity to ‘grapple’ with Mathematics tasks and to develop their reasoning through discussion with peers and adults.
Further information about our Mathematics curriculum can be found here: Mathematics Curriculum.
The International Primary Curriculum (IPC)
Most foundation subjects are taught as thematic units through the IPC. These subjects include:
- Art & Design
- Design & Technology
- Modern Foreign Languages (MFL)
Physical Education (PE), Religious Education (RE) and some aspects of Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) and Modern Foreign Languages (MFL) sit outside the IPC and are taught using specific schemes. The IPC and the other schemes we use meet the requirements of the National Curriculum.
The IPC is a comprehensive, thematic, creative curriculum, with a clear process of learning and specific learning goals for every subject. It also develops international mindedness and encourages personal learning (linked to our school values). It is flexible and is adapted to our children's needs.
We know that the main barriers to learning in our school are often linked to language, vocabulary and reading. The IPC and IEYC provide rich opportunities to gain knowledge about the world, to build vocabulary and develop oracy skills, all of which will support their reading. Addressing these are a priority for the school. The IPC approach emphasises ‘real-life’, hands-on and experiential learning with opportunities for special events, trips and visitors
IPC is purposeful and engaging. Themed units help children to see how subjects are both independent and interdependent. This enables them to see the big picture of their learning, make connections across different subjects and talk about a topic from multiple perspectives. Not every subject is taught every week, creating time and space for children to deepen their knowledge and understanding of their topic. There are opportunities for children to use and apply their mathematics and English skills in every unit.
IPC promotes metacognition. The children are involved in the learning process at every stage, helping to shape the ‘route’ through a unit and self-assessing using ‘rubrics’. The IPC also includes ‘Brainwave’ units that are designed to develop the children’s understanding of how they learn and give them strategies to support their learning and thinking skills. The IPC approach challenges children to explain, justify, solve problems and make connections, helping them to develop reasoning skills.
The IPC helps children begin to build a national, international and intercultural perspective or 'international mindedness'. Each thematic IPC unit includes an international aspect to help develop a sense of ‘international mindedness’, respect and tolerance. This is important because Bracknell – and other towns nearby - are host to a significant number of businesses owned or trading overseas and have diverse communities. Consequently, our children are likely to live, work, study and socialise in an increasingly ‘international’ environment.