OUR SCHOOLS KNOWLEDGE BASED CURRICULUM
Please click on the tabs below to view information on our Knowledge Rich Curriculum.
Our Curriculum Intent
Heacham Junior School lies within a rural, coastal area which is beautiful and offers fantastic opportunities to engage with the natural world, but this can also make it harder to experience a broad range of cultural, artistic and educational experiences. We know this because more children than average begin at school with lower language and experiential starting points. Our Knowledge Rich Curriculum is designed to build upon the strengths we have and to fill cultural gaps by providing access to a wide range of creative, cultural, scientific and educational experiences. It enables an ambitious drive to deliver high quality knowledge and vocabulary to all pupils, so that no one should be left behind. The knowledge within the curriculum reflects our local community but also expands upon and broadens our rural horizons - covering ambitious themes which are filled with new vocabulary and knowledge that is rich and deep. Concepts and knowledge connect over time due to the relevant, memorable and engaging content. Our teachers and other colleagues have worked hard in teams to design our curriculum alongside our West Norfolk Academies Trust colleagues, influenced through pilot work with West London Free School. As a result, teachers are empowered and the curriculum feels personal and authentic.
Our intent is to make parental engagement a vital part of learning, particularly as research demonstrates links between the quantity and quality of words used by children and interactions that take place before children come to school, and later life success. So we work hard to make connections where we can: workshops, signposting resources, early help support and meetings with SEND staff, enrichment opportunities. Though interrupted by the pandemic and access into school, we continue to make parental engagement a priority for Leadership and Management in our school improvement planning. Remote learning created a unique partnership with our families- sharing videos, lesson plans, live sessions, oak academy which has given our staff and families more understanding of each pupil’s context.
We are starting our journey to implement the new curriculum. We are developing sequential long term and mid term plans to ensure content is progressive. In addition, there are detailed lesson plans which specify what we must know and the vocabulary we are using. These plans are delivered through structured and pacey lessons which adhere to our Teaching and Learning Policy, EYFS Policy and Live Marking Policy to increase progress and teacher access for all.
We have robust plans for all year groups and subjects. Knowledge organisers detail essential facts and vocabulary definitions for every half term. These will be shared with families to share and embed the learning. Knowing things becomes exciting! Debating the knowledge leads to additional skills for later success in life.
Increasing the pace at which we teach with subject specific lessons in Geography, History, Science, Computing, Design and Technology, Physical Education, Religious Education , Music, Art and PSHE is what our children wanted. . The children wanted to know more about each subject when they were involved in our deep dives around their learning. They wanted to move away from a topic approach to learn more History and Geography.
In addition we are building an enrichment map to structure exceptional opportunities for all children in our Trust and Schools. We passionately want every child to gain experiences to help them achieve and grow. Attitudes and confidence make a real difference to our lives and we believe that the stepping stones of early education and family life are vital in promoting well being. Here are some examples of the design of our enrichment program.
Please click here to view an example of our Enrichment Map for Year 3
Our Curriculum Impact
Our school community, particularly our children are getting excited about the Knowledge Curriculum. Children want to know more, speak confidently and be able to apply what they know to the life they lead in order to make positive contributions to society. In all subjects we use ongoing assessment to recognise gaps in subject knowledge, so we can adjust our teaching and address misconceptions. Live marking is used in every lesson. This has an immediate impact on progress. We are developing our own assessment and exemplification materials for foundation subjects to make sure we have high and appropriate expectations for all subjects. We are looking at key skills for the subject such as drawing,map mapping or investigations and making progression folders with samples of work from each year group. We agree our standards with other schools in our Trust and Cluster at foundation moderation meetings. These are some examples from Art.