At Lowerplace Primary School, we offer a broad, balanced and engaging curriculum for all our learners. Children in the Early Years Foundation Stage are taught using the EYFS framework with an emphasis on developing key skills, knowledge and understanding through structured child-led play. The statutory National Curriculum is taught across Key Stages 1 and 2. Core subjects (Reading, Writing, Maths and Science) are taught in-line with the curriculum objectives and in a creative, challenging way. Children learn about 5 topics each year covering the Geography and History curriculum as well developing their art and writing skills through each topic. Other foundation subjects are taught discretely, including Religious Education, Music, Physical Education, PSHE and French. For more information regarding the statutory National Curriculum, please click the PDF document below.
Alongside the statutory curriculum, we offer additional experiences to enrich children’s development and knowledge. Children attend trips related to their topic to help enhance their learning and develop their knowledge in other contexts. Knowledge of the world is also developed through Knowledge Assemblies (see knowledge assemblies page) that focus on inspirational/instrumental people or events that have impacted on the world.
Year Group Curriculum Overview
For more details regarding the curriculum taught in each year group please see the below PDF documents.
Daily phonics sessions take place from Early Years through to Year 2 using the ‘Letters and Sounds’ programme. This is supported by resources from ‘Read, Write Inc’ . In these sessions children are taught key phonic skills needed to read and spell successfully.
The children will learn to recognise single units of sounds in words – these are called phonemes. They will learn that phonemes can be made up of single letter sounds e.g. c, a , p or of digraphs and trigraphs, where 2 or more letters join together to make a single sound e.g. ou or igh. They will learn that some letters can make more than one than one sounds e.g. bow or bow, and that some sounds can be spelt in different ways e.g. ay, ai, ey. They children are taught how to apply these skills to their reading and writing.
We use the Oxford Reading Tree reading scheme to teach reading in Key Stage 1. Alongside this we use other resources from Oxford University Press and ‘real books’ to supplement our teaching and extend the range of books that children read. Children will be given a reading book to take home each week and it is helpful if parent/carer can make a brief comment in the child’s reading record to let us know how they are getting on with their reading at home. We expect children to bring their reading books into school everyday.
Children in Key Stage 2 will be given a book to take home each day, which is at their individual reading level. These books may be from a scheme or may be a general reading book. It is helpful if parents can write a comment in the reading record books to keep us up to date on how children are getting on with their reading at home. We expect children to bring their reading books into school each day.
ERIC (Everyone Reading in Class)
All children are to have 15 minutes independent reading time each day. Each class will follow the ERIC model, meaning that all adults are to read a text of their own choosing while the children read independently. This ensures that children see adults modelling good reading behaviour and sharing informal book talk with the school community.
All classes are to have shared reading opportunities at least once a day.
Whole Class Guided Reading
EYFS and Year 1 will introduce elements of WCR into daily lessons/reading time.
Year 2 will introduce elements of WCR into daily lessons/reading time.
In Summer term, Year 2 will begin to follow the WCR structure of four 40-minute sessions per week.
Key Stage 2 classes will have 40-minute sessions of Whole Class Reading each week.
Sessions 1 and 2:
- Predicting and/or book hook
- Teacher reads
- Written response
- Vocabulary focus
Session 3 and 4:
- Close reading
- Reading aloud (echo; choral; reading round the room; readers theatre)
- Dialogic talk/discussion/big questions
- Non-fictions line
At Lowerplace, we ensure that writing is taught through a creative and inspiring medium. Each unit of work is based around an engaging picture book or text, which enriches children’s English skills. Genres are then carefully planned to marry with the text and also boost cross-curricular links. Grammar is at the heart of every lesson and is taught in context as well as discreet lessons. Spellings are taught weekly; spelling lists are linked-in with the English lessons to ensure that spellings are being regularly used – this helps children to remember them long after the test. For an overview of English teaching across the school, please download the PDF below.
At Lowerplace, we strive to teach a well-rounded, all inclusive curriculum in Maths. Following the guidelines set out in the National Curriculum, we aim to ensure that are children are secure in the fundamentals of maths before moving them on to trickier concepts. To achieve this, we follow the White Rose Hub scheme of work. All children are given the chance to become fluent in different concepts before being able to deepen their learning and understanding through different reasoning and problem solving activities. It is our aim that these reasoning and problem solving skills are then used across all subjects within school. For an overview of Maths teaching across the school, please download the PDF below.
Science is a valued subject at Lowerplace. The National Curriculum is delivered creatively across Years 1 to 6 with children taking part in a Science lesson for a full afternoon every week. At Lowerplace, we value opportunities for children to work scientifically, through a variety of ‘hands on’ and written work. Our Science teaching is strengthened through the use of our Phiz Lab (see features of Lowerplace page) and children across school are enthusiastic about their Science lessons.
We promote the importance of children being able to develop their own questions in a Science lesson, through a structure known as “We Honestly Wonder”. Science assessment takes place in lessons and not through tests: children complete pre and post assessment tasks so that they can demonstrate the progress that they make in each lesson. As well as science lessons, children at Lowerplace get the opportunity to take part in Science fairs, attend sessions by visiting workshops and in Year 5 and 6 to become a Science Ambassador. Every month, we also reward those children who demonstrate excellent effort and achievement, by awarding a Scientist of the Month certificate to a child in each class.
At Lowerplace we follow the Rochdale Agreed Religious Education Syllabus. The aim is to develop an understanding of different religions and promote tolerance of others. As well as weekly RE lessons, a variety of significant religious events are celebrated in school across the year.
Children in Year 2, 3 and 5 take part in a programme of intensive music tuition provided by specialist music teachers from Rochdale Music Service. In Year 2, our children learn to play the ukulele; Year 3 children learn to play a brass instrument (e.g. cornet); Year 5 children are taking part in a carousel of percussion instruments. As well as music tuition, Music Express is used throughout school to teach music. As well as music lesson and tuition in school, our children get the opportunity to perform at events outside of school (e.g. Rochdale Performing Arts Festival).
Computing is taught in three strands: computer science, digital literacy and information technology. In computer science, children learn how to program and control devices both physically and on screen, underpinned by a thorough knowledge of computational thinking concepts and approaches. In digital literacy children learn how to use technology safely and responsibility. In information technology children learn how to create and share content on a range of devices for different audiences and purposes.
PSHE has an important place in our school curriculum, as we value the social, moral, spiritual and cultural knowledge and skills developed in these sessions. Across the school, the Jigsaw scheme of work is followed in our weekly sessions of PSHE, as well as used to delivery a weekly PSHE assembly. Our PSHE sessions also help to develop the children’s knowledge of British Values as these are linked into each of the taught sessions.
If you have any questions about the curriculum taught at Lowerplace, please speak to your child’s class teacher, or alternatively you can contact the office to make an appointment. Please see the contact us page for contact details.