We place a very high value on the ability to read, write, listen and speak. Whilst understanding that these are skills which continue to develop way past the primary years, we expect that, by the time they leave us, our pupils should be fluent and committed readers and writers, well able to cope with the demands of secondary education.
During their time with us, we aim to introduce children to a wide range of good quality literature, ensure that they can communicate clearly in written language, and feel confident in their capabilities as speakers and listeners. Great emphasis and encouragement is given to reading development at school and we value parental support at home through a shared reading scheme. As with other aspects of children’s development, we see this very much as a partnership between home and school.
Each class generally has a timetabled daily English session through which the curriculum is taught. This usually involves the whole class working on a shared text, grammar and phonic work, followed by guided and independent activities. Parents are warmly invited to help!
Every year we hold a very successful Book Term, involving the whole school. The children enjoy various reading and writing activities, and the opportunity to work with children from other classes. They meet children’s authors and even come back to school in their pyjamas for ‘Bedtime Stories’. It is always a very enjoyable term, which helps to raise the profile of reading as good fun. We also hold a Book Fair, commission from which boosts the school and classroom libraries.
We aim for high levels of achievement, with every child numerate, and also to help our children create an understanding of the mathematical world in which they live. We promote a positive attitude and encourage an ability to think clearly, logically and confidently.
As with English, we generally teach a daily mathematics lesson. The emphasis is on teaching mental strategies and class lessons are very focused, concentrating on teaching basic numeracy skills well.
Children are encouraged to recognise the scientific concepts they have already acquired from their day-to-day experiences. They are helped to extend or modify their scientific understanding through a range of explorations, investigations or discussions.
In the course of their work, children will develop appropriate scientific skills and attitudes, which will enable them to address scientific problems with confidence.
IT is now an integral part of our everyday lives, and the rapidly increasing use of computers for sharing information and communicating means that IT capability is an essential skill for the children of today. Therefore Computing is not only taught as a separate subject, but is also seen as a means to enhance children’s learning across the curriculum.
Throughout the school we progressively develop children’s computer skills through a structured scheme, addressing the areas of the National Curriculum. From Reception class upwards, the children use a variety of computer software, making use of the internet to enhance research and communication, and all classes are taught using interactive whiteboards. We have laptop and iPad banks with wireless internet connection which further enhance our provision and children’s learning.
Religious Education is taught in accordance with the syllabus agreed by the Diocese of Bath and Wells. As a church school we value our links with our local churches, especially at festival times.
We seek to give the children an understanding of our Christian tradition and empathy for the other cultures and faiths that exist beyond our local community. We welcome and promote links which enable us to do this.
Design and Technology
Design and Technology is an integral part of work in each class and children are encouraged to investigate familiar situations as starting points for design and to use a variety of media in creating them. This subject incorporates the development of skills and understanding through a variety of hands-on activities including cooking, textiles, modelling and construction kits.
Through this area of the curriculum, children grow in self-confidence and develop a sense of achievement through the practical realisation of their own ideas.
We help children to develop their geographical skills through fieldwork and classroom based activities, usually by way of projects in which they are given opportunities to study places and geographical themes.
For many children, the area in which they are brought up will be the most significant to them for the rest of their lives, therefore its study is one of our key starting points. We also encourage real life experiences of the wider world by planning appropriate visits, encuraging children to ask the questions they want to find out about.
The children are taught how to acquire information and are helped to develop skills that enable them to interpret the knowledge gained.
We help the children develop a sense of identity through learning about the development of Britain, Europe and the world, and introduce them to what is involved in understanding and interpreting the past through many sources, such as local records, objects, photographs, adults talking about their own past, museums, paintings, films, buildings etc., We hope to arouse the children’s interest, and help them to understand the present in the light of the past.
We develop pupils’ confidence and pleasure in art, craft and design, stimulating their imagination and creativity through a range of activities. They develop ideas from a variety of starting points, working with a wide range of materials.
We have an annual art week when all classes focus on art activities, with workshops and visiting artists.
Each class has a music lesson timetabled weekly, where they listen, perform and compose. Various musical events are held throughout the year, most notably concerts and area music festivals, where every child is given the opportunity to take part. We believe that music is an enjoyable and worthwhile activity for all children. On an annual basis we take part in a 'wider opportunities' programme with classes enjoying lessons learning to play guitars, ukulele or samba drumming with a music specialist.
In addition to class music lessons, extra-curricular clubs include choir, guitars and glockenspiel club.
Teachers and specialist PE coaches deliver our curriculum. All children have a balance of Dance, Games, Gym, Athletics, Swimming and Outdoor & Adventurous sessions.
A number of extra-curricular sporting clubs are run voluntarily by teachers, and pupils are encouraged to play in local sports clubs out-of-school.
As an accredited Director of Public Health Award school, we also encourage physical activity in its widest sense, including Friday’s “Golden Mile” and encouraging children to walk to school. Our annual Health Week includes favourite activities including the whole school going outside for special Take 10 activities led by the older children.
Sex and Relationships Education:
The Sex and Relationships Education (SRE) Policy is revised annually by the governing body. We hope to prepare children for changes in their development at various stages of their Primary school life.
Formal sex education is organised for Years 5 and 6 and the “Living and Growing” DVD is used to present the subject in a sensitive way. The School Nurse supports us in these lessons. Parents are welcome to have a copy of the detailed policy on request.
Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE):
We are proud to have gained the new Director of Public Health Award which recognises our commitment to promoting healthier lifestyles and to encouraging our pupils to make healthy choices. We actively promote:
q Personal, Social and Health Education, including Sex and Relationships -, and Drug Education
q Healthy eating
q Physical activity
q Emotional health and well-being
We have built on this strong foundation by utilising the Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning (SEAL) programme very successfully throughout the school. Each class has timetabled, structured PSHE sessions, allowing time for pupils to discuss and share ideas on issues that affect them as they grow up.