Our Lady and St Philip Neri

Curriculum

Please see each class’ page individually for a link to their Curriculum Maps.

Staff plan and organise the learning for each year group to ensure that there is continuity and progression. Our curriculum planning framework aims to provide a broad, balanced and exciting education set within the context of the National Curriculum.

At Our Lady and St Philip Neri we make every attempt to develop meaningful links between these subjects. Although English and Maths are taught discretely at certain times of the day, they are also taught within a cross curricular context.

Visits and visitors are seen as a vital stimulation for children’s interest and are closely linked with the context for learning.

Each year there is at least one themed curriculum week in which the whole school focuses on a particular area of interest. These have included Cultural events, Book Week and Science.

In the Foundation Stage

Children’s learning is planned, organised and assessed under the following headings:
  1. Personal, social and emotional development
  2. Communication and Language
  3. Literacy
  4. Mathematical development
  5. Knowledge and understanding of the world
  6. Physical development
  7. Expressive Arts and Design
We place a firm emphasis on learning through structured play both indoors and outdoors. The development of children’s social skills such as sharing and turn taking are very important at this stage.

Early Years Foundation Stage Policy

Key Stage One & Key Stage Two

English

Progressive Skills – Grammar

Across the school, children are taught writing based on a set of key skills each year. 

In Reception children are taught how to decode. They begin to identify subjects and verbs in sentences; begin to recognise full stops and capital letters in sentences; to retell a story; begin to understand the difference between fiction and non-fiction and listen to a range of fiction and non-fiction stories.

In year one, children are taught to decode words; identify and write simple sentences; identify and write statements and questions; use capital letters and full stops or question marks in sentences,; read their own sentences aloud;  identify parts of a story; identify adjectives, rhymes in poetry and begin to use some poetic features (alliteration, rhyme and onomatopoeia).

In year two, the children decode monosyllabic words; add suffixes to nouns; join letters and words using our handwriting scheme; identify and explain what a main clause is; identify and write commands; identify and begin to write dialogue; identify compound sentences with the use of conjunctions; begin to write simple and compound sentences, write statements, questions, commands and explanations; identify commas, exclamation marks and inverted commas; read their own work aloud with an awareness of their audience; explain the difference between fiction and non-fiction, identify and write similes, use adjectives separated by a comma, identify and use synonyms.

In year three, children read with more accuracy, decoding when necessary. They join letters and words more fluently; begin to identify and use a wider range of sentence openers; begin to identify and use apostrophes for contraction and possession; read work aloud with an awareness of their audience; write organised stories; write fiction and non-fiction pieces; identify and use synonyms and antonyms in writing. 

In year four, children read with more fluency. They continue to develop their handwriting; write a range of sentences, using more advanced punctuation; organise writing into paragraphs; learn and recite poetry; write fiction and non fiction pieces with an increased awareness of their audience; use more advanced poetic features such as repetition and metaphors; use synonyms and antonyms in their writing as well as prepositions.

In year five, Children continue to write a range of sentences, begin to identify and explain subordinate and main clauses, learn about rhetorical questions, identify past and present, develop a better understanding of advanced punctuation such as brackets, commas and dashes for parenthesis; use semi-colons and begin to use colons; write playscripts, link paragraphs, show more awareness of their audience when writing and reading their work aloud; continue to use synonyms and antonyms; identify and use modal verbs.

In year six, children consolidate the skills taught from years three to five as well as:

Using bullet points; identifying and using ellipsis and hyphens; knowing and writing the main features of a letter, email, report, diary entry, instructional text, advertisement, brochure, argument and persuasive text. Use more advanced poetic features including personification; use hyperbole in fiction and non-fiction as well as idioms, use dialogue accurately; write flashback scenes; use quotes in non-fiction to add authority; use different techniques to conclude texts; link ideas using cohesive devices; use contrasting settings and characters in fiction writing; change the tone with an awareness of their audience, add suspense and irony.

Writing

We teach writing using books from ‘The Power of Reading’ scheme. Each year group can choose books that are age appropriate, from a wide range of genres. Drama and poetry are embraced and the children develop a range of skills linked with other areas of the curriculum such as art, geography, history, music and PSHCE.

Reading

Through the teaching of reading, all staff at Our Lady and St Philip Neri aim to ensure that all pupils have a strong commandment of the spoken and written word, developing their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment and purpose.

To achieve this, we aim to ensure that all students:

  1. Have a firm understanding of phonics and apply their phonic knowledge when reading.
  2. Read easily, fluently and with good understanding.
  3. Acquire a wide vocabulary and an understanding of grammar.
  4. Develop the habit of reading widely and often, for both pleasure and information.
  5. Use discussion in order to learn; children should be able to elaborate and explain clearly their understanding and ideas, evidenced from the text they have read.
  6. Have high quality teaching in regular phonics, Daily Supported Reading, Destination Reader and guided reading sessions.
  7. Are read to daily by an adult.
  8. Are heard read by an adult no less than once a week.
  9. Are provided with appropriate reading materials that support their phonic knowledge and understanding.

All children are provided with opportunities to read in small groups, whole class or individually with the support of a known adult.

Children in EYFS participate in weekly guided reading sessions. The children are placed into small groups of no more than six, reading books that are banded according to their ability, attainment level and phonics phase. These small group sessions are taught by the class teacher and at times the class teaching assistant.

Upon entering KS1, the children begin Daily Supported Reading sessions. This is a quality first teaching programme that ensures sustained independent reading opportunities for the children. Each day, the children receive a 25 minute reading session that is aimed at their instructional level. The groups are small, with no more than 6 children and lead by the class teacher or a trained adult.

Throughout the day, in any classroom at Our Lady and St Philip Neri, you will find whole class reading taking place. All staff are encouraged to read stories and other texts aloud to their class. As the children get older, this story would be a class novel that is read over a longer period of time. Teachers and support staff are able to use this as an opportunity to check the children’s comprehension and consolidate other reading skills that are or have been taught through other structured reading sessions.

All children at Our Lady and St Philip Neri School take books home weekly that are suitable for their instructional level. The books are banded and support the pupils reading ability, comprehension skills and phonic understanding. Children are heard read by the class teacher or teaching assistant on a 1:1 basis and a comment is written in their home/ school reading log.

In addition to the various hard copies of suitable texts, our school has also purchased an online subscription through Bug Club/ Activelearn, where children are able to access extra reading materials that are allocated by the class teacher. Each child has their own account that they are able to access from home. These online books are also banded and run alongside the other reading books that are used in our school. Parents are encouraged to support and listen to their children when reading the online books. The online books are accessible for all children from Nursery through to Year 6.

Destination Reader

This is our third year working with Destination Reader in Key Stage two for the teaching of reading. By following this scheme we have introduced the children to seven different strategies we use when reading. In addition, the teaching of comprehension forms part of daily lessons and as a result, the children have become more confident and competent when completing comprehension tasks. On Friday, the children are taught Big Picture lessons where they have the opportunity to read texts that are familiar to them (class texts) and texts which are unfamiliar (unseen). Questions about the text are answered using the seven reading strategies and a range of open and closed questions. The children are also encouraged to support their answers using evidence from the text to prepare them for assessments.

Phonics

The teaching of phonics is recommended as the first strategy for teaching children how to read. It runs alongside guided reading, whole class reading, Daily Supported Reading and Destination Reader.

At Our Lady and St Philip Neri School we teach phonics through structured, daily sessions outlined and supported by the Letters and Sounds document that was published by the Department for Education in 2007. The children in EYFS and KS1 are taught through daily, 20 minute discrete sessions with supported interactive lessons from TES Elements, Active Learn Bug Club and other hands-on resources. The teaching and support staff deliver high quality, first wave teaching through streamed, attainment based phase groups. The children are continually assessed and tracked throughout the year to ensure consistent progression.

The six phases of Letters and Sounds allow for letter progression, building an understanding and skill of orally and aurally segmenting and blending, grapheme phoneme correspondence and recognition of the 44 phonemes used in reading and writing.

Children who do not meet the expected standard in reading when they leave KS1 or do not pass the Phonics Screening Check resit in year two continue to receive phonics sessions in KS2.

Mathematics

Mathematics is taught in a daily lesson based on the National Curriculum. Aspects of Mathematics such as number and algebra, shape, space and measures, handling data and using and applying maths are covered each term. There is an emphasis on developing mental calculation strategies and problem solving activities; which allow children to apply their knowledge and understanding of mathematical concepts. Wherever possible maths teaching reflects everyday experiences. This year we are following White Rose maths planning throughout the school.

Science

Through the teaching of science we encourage an interest in and an understanding of our world. There are four main areas of learning in science comprising scientific enquiry, life processes and living things, materials and their properties and physical processes.

To help children think scientifically we build on their natural curiosity. They are encouraged to explore and investigate by developing their skills of observing, questioning, hypothesising, carrying out fair tests and recording and interpreting findings. The school visits local wildlife areas where children can study plant, pond and animal life at first hand.

The school runs a Science Week every year, where children take part in chemistry experiments, problem solving and design challenges; have guest speakers and roadshows. This helps promote the awe and wonder of science.

Religious Education

Our faith is at the heart of our school. Religious Education is one of the core subjects at Our Lady and St Philip Neri school. The school follows the Catholic approved The Way, The Truth and The Life scheme of work as well as studying Judaism, Islam, Hinduism and Sikhism. We look to develop a deeper knowledge, understanding and love of the Word Of God, as revealed in the Scriptures and the teaching of the Church. We also use the Ten Ten resources for Collective Worship.

Click here to view Religion Curriculum

Computing

Computing  is concerned with storing, processing and presenting information by electronic means. The junior school has a fully networked, internet – linked computer suite. Both sites have a class set of lap top computers and each class has 9 IPads to use to support learning across the curriculum.

There is an Interactive whiteboard in each classroom. Computing skills are taught discretely, and then opportunities for integrating those skills into all subject areas are provided through our curriculum links.

Our Lady and St Philip Neri has developed its own website which will be used as a resource for the whole school community.

RE is taught within classes and in assemblies, and usually through attending mass, sacraments of reconciliation and school visits.

Art

In Art children are taught a wide range of skills and techniques with a variety of media. They gain an understanding and appreciation of the art forms and styles from other times and cultures. Art is often linked to other areas of the curriculum. We encourage children to develop their skills of observation and self expression. We try to foster in our children a sense of aesthetic awareness and a critical appreciation of the work of artists. Our children regularly visit local and London art galleries.

Design and Technology (DT)

DT is a practical subject which involves children in designing and making products that have purpose. We aim to encourage children to find solutions to practical problems. Opportunities for learning include picture frames in year three and bridges in year six.

Music

Music is a strength of the school. In Music, children listen to, play and appreciate different forms of music. All children sing, use instruments, make music and perform. We currently have a 60 strong brass band. We offer lessons in trumpet, tuba, recorders, violin, percussion and guitar. We have a  30 strong choir for children in years five and six. Children regularly attend other schools to perform. We hold a Summer Concert and perform at local events, church and for charity. We have a hymn practice at the Infants once a week and at the juniors twice a week.

The Humanities (History and Geography)

Geography

The Geography curriculum is knowledge rich. This means the knowledge the children will gain has been carefully specified, ordered coherently and builds over time, As children work through the geography curriculum they will know more, understand more about the world around them. A good geographical understanding relies on firm foundations of knowledge and skills. The skills our curriculum develops, like the knowledge, are specified and progress over time in complexity and accuracy. The curriculum structure helps pupils to deepen their understanding of physical and human geographical processes, fostering curiosity and fascination for the world we live in.

As the children work through the curriculum they will know more about their local area, the UK, Europe and the World. We build on the children’s geographical knowledge and understanding, allowing the pupils to make meaningful connections and gain an understanding of how our World is connected.

Each year the geography curriculum begins with a ‘Spatial Sense’ unit, that explicitly teaches geographical skills such as how to use an Atlas,  locating places on a map, using keys and symbols, interpreting scale, population data and identifying elevation on a relief map. This unit begins each year and explicitly teaches the children the skills they will need throughout that year in future units.

In Key Stage One fieldwork is undertaken in order to use observational skills in order to study the geography of our school and the surrounding area. In Year Five children will further study the local area and will undertake fieldwork to observe, record and present the human and physical features in the local area and the issues we face. 

In years two, three and four, children will study units of European geography that introduce regions of Europe, climate, trade, industry, physical and contrasting environments. Children will also interpret information in maps, graphs, diagrams and climate graphs and comparisons  made to the UK. This will link in with studies in History say with the Vikings and Science.

Alongside their study of the UK and Europe, children will extend their knowledge to World geography. The children will study each continent and by applying their knowledge and understanding of the globe, longitude and latitude, time zones and hemispheres, children will describe and understand the physical geography of continents and countries including biomes, rivers, mountains, volcanoes and earthquakes. They will consider  a range of human geographical features such as settlements, land use, trade links and resources. In year six, children will study globalisation, sustainability and ecology and to recognise their own role in becoming a responsible global citizen. 

Where possible, children will undertake fieldwork to further their understanding of the subject. 

History

The history curriculum is knowledge-rich and designed to be coherently sequenced. We teach the substantive knowledge of key historical events, the disciplinary concepts of history (cause and consequence, continuity and change, significance) and an understanding of the methods of historical enquiry and how evidence is used to make historical claims.

As per the aims of the National Curriculum, we aim to ensure children know and understand the history of the British isles as a coherent, chronological narrative, that they know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world, and that they gain an understanding of key historical concepts as well as abstract terms such as “empire” and “civilisation”.

The curriculum is currently mapped over a period of 2 years. This allows us to respond proactively to the curricular needs of our split year classes (years 3/4 and years 5/6).

Children start in Year 1 with an introduction to history and they begin to learn about British monarchs, prime ministers and parliament. In Year 2, children study significant individuals of the past through the theme of exploration. They also study an ancient civilisation (Ancient Egypt) and a significant event in British history (The Great Fire of London).

Years 3 and 4 study another ancient civilisation (Ancient Greece) and take a chronological journey through British history starting from the Stone Age and all the way to the Stuarts. Years 5 and 6 study a further ancient civilisation (10th century Baghdad), and learn about the Early British Empire, the French Revolution, the Victorian Age as well as the major events of 20th century history (World War I, World War II, the Holocaust and the Cold War).

Modern Foreign Languages

Spanish is our chosen modern foreign language.

All children from Reception to Year 6 will have the opportunity to develop their linguistic skills in an enjoyable way. Each Spanish lesson uses a variety of techniques to encourage the children to have an active engagement with Spanish, and to develop a positive approach to languages.

Our Spanish curriculum is in line with the new National Curriculum and is adapted to each class topic, where possible, to ensure children learn Spanish in a meaningful context. Children are given opportunities to listen to and perform traditional songs, join in with story-telling and engage in short-conversations or role-plays.

The Spanish Curriculum

Reception and Key Stage 1:  

The children will learn greetings, colours, numbers, the Spanish alphabet, parts of the body, animals and fruits and vegetables. This will be through song and story-telling.

Key Stage 2:

Per the National Curriculum, in our Key Stage 2 Spanish lessons, the children will learn to:

  1. communicate orally in Spanish
  2. share their ideas and feelings in Spanish
  3. compare their use of English grammar and spelling to another language
  4. express some ideas in writing in Spanish

A good way to help your child is to use some of the free online resources that are available.

Personal, Social, Health Education (PHSE) and Citizenship

A strong emphasis is placed on developing children’s personal and social skills and promoting safety. This is carried out through aspects of topic work, visiting speakers (for example police liaison officer, school nurse) and through the use of circle time when we encourage children to listen to each other and respect each others points of view. We discuss topics such as smoking, legal and illegal substances and sex education. We answer children’s questions truthfully and openly.

The school has ‘Healthy Schools’ status which reflects our commitment to caring for the environment.

There is an active school council that meets at least 6 times a term. There is an Infant and Junior school council and they meet to discuss changes to the school environment and have in the past helped to design the school play ground, had input on the school dinner menus and have met with other school councils on group based projects.

Physical Education (PE) and Games

PE is an important aspect of school life as it helps to develop and maintain a healthy lifestyle. PE develops self discipline, self awareness and the ability to work as a member of a team. We aim to give children a varied programme of athletics, dance, gymnastics and team games including football, hockey, netball, cricket and tag rugby. We have a number of visiting coaches who teach the children specific skills.

Children in years three and four have the opportunity to go swimming. There are sports afternoons in the summer term to which parents are invited.