The Curriculum at St Paul’s
Everything that we do at St Paul’s Catholic Junior School centres on our Mission Statement:
Learning from the example of Jesus, our school will be a place where everyone feels loved, valued and encouraged to be and do the best they can.
We live out this mission statement through developing an ethos and curriculum that allows our children to be kind, be respectful and be resilient. As a Catholic school, we believe that fostering a knowledge of Christ and nurturing the spiritual, personal, moral and cultural development of our children is fundamental to all that we do.
We believe that all children in our school should have access to a broad and balanced curriculum that allows them to develop and achieve through a rich range of experiences. We intend for every pupil at St Paul’s Catholic Junior School to have experienced a ‘knowledge rich‘ curriculum that will enable them to become active, responsible, articulate, confident citizens of the future.
The ‘knowledge-rich’ curriculum at St Paul’s Catholic Junior School enables teachers to set new challenges with key aims and values that provide our young learners with a reason to make active changes in society through a thought provoking curriculum which takes our children from being engaged to being invested. We are actively encouraging a ‘botheredness’ mindset across our school. To help us to do this, we are fostering partnerships with Chester Zoo and the Ignite Project. This will be used as a vehicle for delivery, working with Inspire Education which is proving to be highly effective in successfully engaging, challenging and exciting to all learners. Our curriculum is underpinned by the themes of conservation and social justice.
Teachers at St Paul’s have very good subject knowledge due to in-depth training and are happy to collaborate to develop this further. We have developed a broad, knowledge based curriculum which provides children with the knowledge and skills they need for the future and has relevance to the world around them. Our school's curriculum is planned and sequenced so that new knowledge and skills builds on what has been taught before, and towards those defined end points. Knowledge is generative or ‘sticky’. We recognise that new learning is fragile so opportunities to revisit and refresh have been planned for.
Enquiry based learning; dilemma led learning and ‘mantle of the expert’ are some of the strategies we use to enhance our curriculum. These strategies support the development of the children’s voice. We aim to develop children’s speaking and listening skills, giving them the confidence to speak about and present their learning alongside developing their skills of negotiation and debate. In addition, the effective use of questioning throughout the curriculum is making children think more about what they are learning and how they might find solutions. We acknowledge vocabulary size is related to academic success, and we feel that it is our role and responsibility to increase the breadth of our pupils’ vocabulary, through an exciting curriculum.
Teachers plan well to meet the needs of all pupils. Pupils are provided with regular feedback through live verbal feedback and effective teacher questioning to check pupils’ knowledge and understanding. An opportunity for children to review and improve their learning has been embedded across the curriculum with daily editing and improving time. Targeted verbal feedback has enabled teachers to work with identified children to ensure they understand what they need to do to improve and how to achieve the next steps in their learning.
We focus on developing the whole child through the promotion of sport, the arts and personal, social and emotional development.
Currently the curriculum is assessed against key end of year statements using working towards the expected level; at the expected level and above the expected level. We are moving away from having yearly key assessments and instead subject- specific assessment objectives will be built upon by using the main themes such as locational knowledge in geography and chronology in history.
The impact of our curriculum will result in our pupils leaving us well prepared for the next stage in their lives. They will be kind, respectful and resilient and able to work towards a happy life, whilst feeling inspired to make a positive difference to society and the world around them.
Through the implementation and delivery of our curriculum, we aim for all children to make progress across all areas of learning. We define progress as knowing more and remembering more. It is the widening and deepening of knowledge, skills, understanding and behaviours. Our children will use and apply their knowledge and skills in a variety of contexts and be purposeful to their futures.