Curriculum Overview

The curriculum that Chollerton First School provides takes account of the National Curriculum core subjects, English, Maths, Science, ICT and the foundation subjects of Design and Technology, History, Geography, Music, Art, Physical Education and Religious Education.

The curriculum is capable of change in response to school based initiatives, e.g. visitors, visits, children's interest and the introduction of Government legislation.

The curriculum extends beyond the National Curriculum. Personal, Social and Health Education is a very important part. The children learn about themselves and their relationship to the environment and to other people.

As a Church Aided School we follow the Diocesan Syllabus of Newcastle and Durham. Our worship is based on Christian ethos, however the children learn about other cultures too.

English

We believe literacy is central to children's overall development and that success in reading, writing, speaking and listening are crucial in allowing children to achieve their full potential in other curriculum subjects and in all aspects of school life.

Reading Throughout the school children are taught skills to enable them to decode text and enjoy their books. We aim to ensure that all children value books, appreciate the enjoyment of reading for its own sake, and become competent and critical readers.

We use a variety of reading schemes but mainly Oxford Reading Tree. We follow the guidelines of Letters and Sounds for our Phonics Scheme.

Writing  We encourage all children to appreciate the importance of writing as a means of communication, to enjoy writing and to develop into confident and competent writers. We consider the presentation of written work to be important and introduce a style of handwriting which can be 'joined up' as developed. The children experience writing for a variety of purposes from lists, news, story, factual accounts and riddles to name but a few.

Speaking and Listening We believe the development in speaking and listening is essential to all children's learning. Children engage in activities which involve discussion with adults, one to one with a partner and to a wider audience. Circle time and specifically planned speaking and listening activities enable our children to become confident speakers and active listeners.

Mathematics

Our school aims to ensure that all pupils have a sound grasp of basic mathematics that will enable them to apply their skills and knowledge, in a variety of situations. We also aim to foster a positive attitude towards mathematics in staff, pupils and parents, so that children can enjoy and become confident in their use of mathematics.

The children throughout the school are encouraged to tackle mathematics through a variety of ways including practical activities, games, investigations, problem solving, mental mathematics, computer based activities and through more formal written work.

Number, Shape, Space and Measures and Data Handling are taught throughout the year in line with Numeracy Framework. We use a wide range of resources to give the children a broad mathematics curriculum.

Science

Science is taught through a range of topics throughout the school. Children are given opportunities for practical exploration and experimenting, and are encouraged to ask and answer questions. We aim to provide opportunities for investigations. We encourage children to think and observe scientifically. We provide facts and information which helps them to develop an understanding of their world. We encourage curiousity, predictions and practical activities which develop scientific concepts such as a fair test.

Design and Technology

In our Design and Technology curriculum we encourage children to look at the world around them and consider products and objects that have been designed. The children are also given opportunities to develop their own design and making skills using a range of materials including wood, textiles, construction kits, food, paper and card, electricity and mouldable materisl such as clay and play doh.

The children are asked to plan, record and evaluate their ideas in a variety of ways.  The children are encouraged to use measuring skills and their understanding of shape and pattern in their work.  The children are taught how to use a range of tools and equipment safely and hygienically.

History

By studying the past we help children:

  • Understand different ways of life, changing conditions and their effect upon people both locally and on a wider scale.
  • We help children to begin to understand chronology.
  • Children identify and assess evidence and use it to make informed judgements.
  • We help children to develop investigational and research skills and to present information in appropriate terms.
  • We help children to understand customs and where they originated from.
  • History topics vary from The Egyptians to our school.
  • We support the understanding of History by visits wherever possible.

Geography

By studying Geography we give opportunities for children to, develop curiousity about the world, relate to places other than their own and develop a caring attitude towards the enivorment

  • We aim to extend the children's awareness of their immediate environment, their country and of the world.
  • We encourage the skills of observation, enquiring and decision making.
  • We develop mapping skills.
  • We develop an understanding of weather changes, how they are monitored and the effect they have on people and places.

Phonics

We have developed our own systematic approach to phonics teaching, enabling the children to use phonics in reading and writing activities.

Phonics is taught alongside handwriting and spelling. Children are encouraged to listen to sounds in words and attempt to spell using their knowledge of phonics.

Art

The children have access to a programme of art, craft and design activities using a range of materials, tools and techniques. They have opportunities to understand and appreciate art in a variety of forms and styles.

The children plan and complete specific projects over a sustained period in order to practise and develop new skills and produce work they are justly proud of.

Physical Education

The children will be taught the skills which will enable them to develop physically. Children are encouraged to have a kit in school of T-shirt, shorts and PE shoes.

All children go swimming at Wentworth Leisure Centre Pool in Hexham during the year. The cost is currently £4.00 per week.

Specialist P.E. teachers and coaches work with the children as part of the P.E. initiative both in lesson time and after-school clubs.

Music

Our aim is to provide a sound foundation for music to meet the needs of the individual child and develop the skills necessary to participate in musical activities. We want each child to become a competent listener, composer and performer, to enjoy a wide range variety of music and singing. Ukulele tuition is provided by a music specialist.

R.E.

The school uses the Newcastle & Durham Agreed Syllabus for Religious Education and Collective Worship. We aim to help children learn more about their own religious tradition and heritage, to develop an awareness and understanding of other beliefs and religious practices in the world.

We enjoy close links with our local church. The incumbent visits school regulary. Rev. Slade also leads collective worship once a week with the children.

Our children are able to attend 'Messy Church' within the village of Barrasford.

We hope that parents would not feel it necessary to withdraw children from R.E., however if you have any concerns please contact the Headteacher to discuss them.

Health

The need to look after our body, the ways in which we can, and how our body works will be studied.