We want children to be secure in their knowledge and understanding of maths and fluent in their application of it, so that they can find enjoyment in solving mathematical problems with growing confidence and have the necessary skills to move on successfully to the next stage of their education.
Through use of our curriculum progression document for mathematics and whole school use of White Rose Hub yearly overviews, we are able to ensure that children take part in lessons that are carefully sequenced in order to build on their knowledge and understanding of maths. Learning is regularly revisited through morning work, homework and in lessons to help children become secure in mathematical procedures so that they become embedded in their memories. Reasoning and problem solving is a consistent feature of our teaching, helping children to develop a deeper understanding of the connections between mathematical concepts, as well as learn to tackle mathematical problems they may encounter in the next stage of their education or in adult life. Formal assessments, data analysis and daily, in-class observations to inform planning so that sequences of lessons meet the needs of their class. This assessment also helps to identify children who may be struggling with their learning. These children benefit from differentiated learning, flexible grouping, and when necessary, intervention groups that target understanding of a specific concept. Teachers use modelling regularly to achieve different outcomes: to demonstrate a new procedure; to check fluency in a method; to challenge thinking about a concept to reach a deeper level of understanding.
We want our children to grow into confident users of mathematics and strive to ensure application is threaded through all areas of our curriculum and experiences with maths are put into real life contexts.
At Giles Brook School reading is at the heart of all our learning and we view reading as an entitlement for all and know that reading is the key to academic success. By centering reading at the core of our curriculum we are instilling in all children an understanding that reading is a transferable skill that will benefit them in all subjects and later on in life. We ensure that the children read both in and out of reading lessons for a range of different purposes.
We aim to:
- Foster a love of reading by listening to, interacting and reading with a variety of narratives, non fiction and poetry texts incorporating cultural capital and diversity.
- Provide children with the necessary life-long skills they need in reading to ensure that they can read confidently, fluently and with secure understanding.
- Build a community of engaged readers who turn to reading for meaning and pleasure by engaging with parents and incorporating visits to our school and other libraries and local bookshops.
- Provide plenty of opportunities for reading for pleasure throughout the school day and week.
- Ensure reading is a transferable skill and that all children are reading across the wider curriculum.
- Maintain a consistent approach to teaching reading in order to close any gaps and to ensure the highest number of children leave Giles Brook School reading at the expected standard fluently, with confidence and passion, in any subject by establishing an environment where reading for pleasure is at the forefront and for pupils to be able to access and acquire knowledge across the curriculum using their comprehension skills.
This will enable pupils to move readily into their next steps in their education journey.
Our reading curriculum ensures that children have the opportunities for reading for practice, reading for meaning and reading for pleasure.
Phase 2 pure sounds
Phase 3 pure sounds
Phase 5 pure sounds
We want the children to be secure in their knowledge and understanding of the different genres of writing and be confident and fluent in their application of them. We want the children to learn that writing enables them to use their imagination and express themselves in different ways. We want them to develop a love of writing; to build on their starting points and have the necessary skills to move on successfully to the next stage of their education.
Through use of our curriculum progression document for writing we are able to ensure that children take part in lessons that are carefully sequenced in order to build on their knowledge and understanding of writing. Learning is regularly revisited through morning work, homework and in cross-curricular lessons to help children become secure with skills to become embedded in their memories. Spelling is a priority with children from Year 2 - Year 5 using ‘No-nonsense’ spelling programme and Year 6 using ‘Headstart’. Teachers use formal assessments, data analysis and daily, in-class observations to inform planning so that the sequence of lessons meet the needs of their class. This assessment also helps to identify children who may be struggling with their learning. These children benefit from differentiated learning, flexible grouping, and when necessary, intervention groups that target understanding of a specific skill. Teachers use modelling regularly to achieve different outcomes: to demonstrate a new skill or genre; to check understanding of specific features; to challenge thinking about a concept to reach a deeper level of understanding.
At Giles Brook School, we recognise the importance of science in our everyday lives and, as a core subject within the primary curriculum, strive to give it the prominence that it deserves. Throughout each year group, we aim to foster an understanding of biology, chemistry and physics, and the role that each have in the wider world around us. In addition, we recognise the importance of embedding key vocabulary, concepts and understanding into long-term memory and our units of work are designed so that topics are revisited, consolidated and built upon to ensure that children leave Giles Brook with a solid foundation with which to continue their scientific journey.
We place high value in promoting each child’s ability to question what they learn, see and understand, therefore enquiry skills are embedded within each science topic. Children are encouraged to use relevant scientific vocabulary whilst exploring their ideas, making links between science and other spheres of learning, such as Geography, carefully observing what they see and building upon prior knowledge. Children, throughout each unit, are equipped with key scientific skills required to understand the uses and implications of science, including planning, evaluating, concluding and extending their own ideas through questioning, the exploration of a range of possible answers and independent discovery. We believe that this will lead to children developing a genuine love of science and thirst for future learning.
At Giles Brook Primary School we are constantly striving to ensure pupils gain coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. The teaching of history knowledge and skills is carefully planned and clear progression ensures children build on their prior learning and make secure links to other areas of the curriculum. History allows children to compare and contrast, to examine how and why things have changed, to learn about historical characters and expand their research skills. We want our children to understand how people have lived in the past, to compare this to modern life and know that society today is built on the events of the past. We see it as an opportunity to develop skills of enquiry and questioning; to become open minded “historical detectives” and explore the past in an exciting way.
We believe the study of history inspires children’s curiosity, encourages them to ask critical questions and enables them to have a better understanding of the society in which they live and that of the wider world. They will work as historians where they will critically analyse different sources of information. History studies help children to gain a sense of their own identity within a social, political, cultural and economic background.
We aim to provide first hand experiences with role play, class visits, workshops and visiting experts playing an important part in all our topics. History is taught through our cross curricular topics. The past comes to life when children use a variety of sources of information to find clues and evidence and take part in discussions with their peers. Through History, children learn to make comparisons and links between the past and modern times and discover how and why things have changed.
During their time at Giles Brook pupils learn about people and events in the past, in Britain and the wider world, and realise that these have influenced our lives today. They are taught how to investigate and record their findings in interesting and creative ways including writing, art, drama and computing.
Our Geography curriculum across the year groups allows children to become inquisitive and active learners in the key areas of the subject - Map skills, Locational knowledge, place knowledge and human and physical Geography. Clear progression of these different areas have been been mapped out and Geographical vocabulary is shared and displayed to children throughout topics. The quality opportunities the children have to learn map skills in our school is a strength and we regularly use our local area for this.
Exciting starting points are often used in our Geography topics to stimulate and engage children. Prior learning is always built upon and sometime this can be shown through our Think, Talk, Do strategy. This is regularly used to give children ownership of their learning, motivate them and develop their further understanding. A real highlight to our curriculum are our Geography trips, including residential trips. These trips really help create excitement and a natural curiosity about topics. Our Geography curriculum celebrates different cultures and backgrounds through the topics studied.
Our Park Rangers and Eco-School Council encourages pupil voice which in turn supports growth mindsets and self esteem. The children really show their passion for the subject and make sure important aspects are effectively communicated to others and are acted upon in assemblies, with governors, staff and the community to address and develop areas of the school and local area. These roles prepare children to be responsible individuals for the future.
At Giles Brook School we are committed to providing a passion and love for Music, where children are inspired to become talented musicians, their self-confidence and creativity is increased, and they gain a sense of achievement. We believe that music is a unique and powerful form of communication that has the ability to reach out to anyone and it allows us to make strong links with the community.
We feel a quality musical education promotes creativity and personal expression as well as development and reflection. Our musical curriculum aims to give children the opportunity to listen to and appraise a range of music from different historical periods, genres and styles. Children explore a range of musical elements e.g. pitch, tempo, form, using their voices and musical instruments. Through our musical scheme ‘Charanga’ we give children opportunities for improvisation and composition of their own music which allows them to experiment with technology and perform regularly to their peers.
It is important to us that Music can be seen and heard throughout the curriculum. We endeavour to give children at our school the opportunity to listen to and experience live music wherever possible, from listening to calming, classical music during Art lessons, to visiting the theatre to watch musicals. We take pride in creating our own musical performances every year to allow the children to show off their musical, artistic and performance skills and developing confidence for everyone.
Children in Y4 receive whole class instrumental sessions where they learn the basics of the recorder, start to play and compose simple tunes and perform to their peers. Children sing regularly for enjoyment throughout our school and this strategy is also used to support cross curricular learning. In 2018-19, 36% of our KS2 pupils learnt an instrument within our school (taught by specialists from the MK Music Co-operative). In order to support our children as musicians for the future, we have good links with our local secondary school and, as a result, music is valued and a large percentage of pupils continue with their instruments as they transfer to the next stage of their education.
As a school we believe that art stimulates creativity, imagination and inventiveness. We want Art to give our children the skills, concepts and knowledge necessary for them to express responses to ideas and experiences; to fire their imagination.
“Art is not just a subject to learn, but an activity that you can practise with your hands, your eyes, your whole personality.” Quentin Blake
Art should enable the children to communicate what they see, feel and think. Children should experiment with their ideas, their use of colour, texture, form, pattern and different materials and processes. Self evaluation of work is encouraged and children are taught how to be resilient to achieve their goals.
At Giles Brook School, we value and are dedicated to the teaching of Art and ‘The Arts.’ We see this as a fundamental part of school life.
Commitment is provided to develop an ‘Arts Rich Curriculum’ for our children. We believe engagement through ‘The Arts’ can contribute to the quality of our children’s lives, both within and beyond school. Pupil voice is heard through the introduction of the Arts Council and we ensure the children have a variety of opportunities to engage in ‘The Arts’ through regular theatre and gallery visits. We see art and design as a means to support learning in a range of ways. The skills that are developed in these subjects are regularly transferred across the curriculum and thus aid learning.
As a school, and in accordance with the National Curriculum’s expectations, we aim to ensure that all pupils:
- Produce creative work, exploring their ideas and recording their experiences
- Become proficient in drawing painting, sculpture and other art, craft and design techniques
- Evaluate and analyse creative works using the language of art, craft and design
- Know about great artists, craft makers and designers, and understand the historical and cultural development of their art forms
Class teachers are responsible for teaching art and design technology, although we believe opportunities should be provided for professional artists/helpers to be involved in the teaching of the topic. We take every opportunity to develop links with outside agencies and experts, including the local secondary school, in order to enrich our Art and Design provision.
Our children enjoy the self-expression that they experience in both Art and Design Technology. They are always keen to learn new skills and work hard to perfect those shown to them. The children’s art is often cross-curricular, and helps them to express feelings and emotions in art, as well as show their knowledge and understanding in history, geography and science.
Through their art and design, we feel it is important that the children are able to reach out into the community, to display and celebrate work produced.
Design & Technology Intent
It is our intent at Giles Brook to provide an ever-improving provision for Design and Technology for children at our school; one which provides a practical and creative journey for all, based upon building problem solving skills within a cross-curricular approach. Strong links are being formed between Core and Foundation subjects such as mathematics, science, computing and art so that children can purposefully use skills within different contexts which will challenge and extend their learning.
We strive to offer children the chance to use creative thinking and design within a defined purpose and tangible outcome. We intend that our children will be encouraged to take risks when designing and making their products.
Lessons will be hands on and engaging, with the children having access to a variety of resources and materials. They will be encouraged to think critically in order to evaluate their products.
At Giles Brook School we are constantly striving to ensure our children gain a broad and balanced curriculum and strongly believe that computing plays a vital role within this. As a school we endeavour to make our children successful users of a range of Information Technology so they can embrace the social, cultural and economic opportunities that instant global communication offers. Computing is highly valued and recognised as playing a fundamental role in our children’s education now and in their future. As a school we recognise that online safety is a priority and it is therefore embedded in our curriculum. We follow the National Curriculum which ensures our children:-
- Can understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, logic, algorithms and data representation. ·
- Can analyse problems in computational terms, and have repeated practical experience of writing computer programs in order to solve such problems. ·
- Can evaluate and apply information technology, including new or unfamiliar technologies, analytically to solve problems.
- Become responsible, competent, confident and creative users of information and communication technology.
At Giles Brook we have tailor made our curriculum using Switched on Computing for our nursery and reception children, which leads into the Teach Computing as our Scheme of Work for Year 1 to 6. We recognise that our children should have the essential skills such as efficient word processing and typing skills to equip them with the fundamentals to access the ever evolving world of technology in their future careers. We teach computing discreetly and in a cross curricular manner including extra curricular opportunities - to ensure the children have the opportunity to reinforce, challenge and extend their learning.
We have always appreciated how IT can enrich our curriculum and our children’s lives, now and in their future. Our digital leaders make confident use of the technology available; leading and supporting others and taking on new challenges themselves. As a school we continuously evaluate our technology and aspire to provide our children with access to a range of computing technology.
At Giles Brook Primary School, personal, social and health education (PSHE) enables our children to become healthy, independent and responsible members of a society. We recognise that our children enter school from a range of different settings and increasingly from culturally diverse backgrounds. We encourage children from an early age to celebrate this diversity, building communities within each classroom as well as across the school.
We feel it is an important part of children’s education to help them to understand how they are developing personally and socially. We provide our children with opportunities for them to learn about their rights and responsibilities and appreciate what it means to be a member of the diverse society in which we live. This learning is through discrete, focussed sessions and threaded throughout the rest of the curriculum to embed the learning.
We actively encourage our children to play a positive role in contributing to the school and the wider community. We hold a democratic voting system for peers to vote for their peers to join pupil voice groups such as School Council, Eco Council, Park Rangers, Play Leaders, Digital Leaders and House Captains.
Clear sequential progression in teaching ensures skills and knowledge are built upon systematically and by merging our PSHE, SMSC (spiritual, moral, social, cultural) and RSE (relationship and sex education) curriculum at Giles Brook Primary School we believe this facilitates the active promotion of, and provides, the opportunity for children to understand the fundamental British Values (Democracy, The Rule of Law, Individual Liberty, Mutual Respect and Tolerance).
Giles Brook School intends to use the Language Angels scheme of work and resources to ensure we offer a relevant, broad, vibrant and ambitious foreign languages curriculum that will inspire and excite our pupils using a wide variety of topics and themes. All pupils will be expected to achieve their full potential by encouraging high expectations and excellent standards in their foreign language learning - the ultimate aim being that pupils will feel willing and able to continue studying languages beyond key stage 2.
The intent is that all content will be continuously updated and reviewed annually, creating a dynamic programme of study that will be clearly outlined in both long-term and short-term planning. This will ensure that the foreign language knowledge of our pupils progresses within each academic year and is extended year upon year throughout the primary phase and, in so doing, will always be relevant and in line with meeting or exceeding national DfE requirements.
The four key language learning skills; listening, speaking, reading and writing will be taught and all necessary grammar will be covered in an age-appropriate way across the primary phase. This will enable pupils to use and apply their learning in a variety of contexts, laying down solid foundations for future language learning and also helping the children improve overall attainment in other subject areas. In addition, the children will be taught how to look up and research language they are unsure of and they will have a bank of reference materials to help them with their spoken and written tasks going forward. This bank of reference materials will develop into a reference library to help pupils recall and build on previous knowledge throughout their primary school language learning journey.
The intent is that all pupils will develop a genuine interest and positive curiosity about foreign languages, finding them enjoyable and stimulating. Learning a second language will also offer pupils the opportunity to explore relationships between language and identity, develop a deeper understanding of other cultures and the world around them with a better awareness of self, others and cultural differences. The intention is that they will be working towards becoming life-long language learners.
All classes will have access to a very high-quality foreign languages curriculum using the Language Angels scheme of work and resources. This will progressively develop pupil skills in foreign languages through regularly taught and well-planned weekly lessons in key stage 2 which will be taught by class teachers.
Children will progressively acquire, use and apply a growing bank of vocabulary, language skills and grammatical knowledge organised around age-appropriate topics and themes - building blocks of language into more complex, fluent and authentic language.
All teachers will know where every child is at any point in their foreign language learning journey.
The planning of different levels of challenge and which units to teach at each stage of the academic year will be addressed dynamically and will be reviewed in detail annually as units are updated and added to the scheme. Lessons offering appropriate levels of challenge and stretch will be taught at all times to ensure pupils learn effectively, continuously building their knowledge of and enthusiasm for the language they are learning.
Physical Education Intent
At Giles Brook School, sport and physical exercise is integral to our children’s well-being and so is prominent in our curriculum. Our curriculum develops a range of skills and covers a variety of sports such as football, hockey, handball and tag rugby. We teach gymnastics, dance and swimming as well as providing daily opportunities for active play to enhance well-being and readiness for learning. Specialist teachers enhance our sports provision and we provide numerous opportunities for our children to be involved in representing our school in a variety of events in the local community such as cross country and athletics. In addition to this, we offer children the chance to take part in residential visits providing a range of physical character building challenges and skills which they may not have access to or develop in school. We promote positive attitudes towards sport and value achievements both within and outside the school day. We believe our children should have a competitive spirit but also recognise the importance of fair play and enjoyment of physical activity.
We are always looking for new initiatives and ideas that can enhance PE provision in the school and continue to try to improve the engagement of children in a variety of ways. Visitors promoting physical activity such as hula hooping or sport such as MK Lightning Ice Hockey team, are encouraged and good links are maintained with our local Pavilion where our sports days are held. Our aim is to create children who are naturally active and enjoy taking part in sporting activity both in and out of school.
Religious Education (RE) Intent
At Giles Brook we believe that quality Religious Education (RE) is vital, in order to support and encourage our children in growing into tolerant and understanding citizens, who will have a genuine interest in, and respect for, the beliefs of others.
Using the Milton Keynes RE Syllabus as our starting point, we follow the strands of Believing, Behaving and Belonging and encourage all pupils to be reflective, sharing their own experiences and making connections between different faiths. As a multicultural, multi-faith school we value the different experiences and beliefs of our children and their families.
Through the use of artefacts, ICT, books and visits, children will encounter the six major faiths (Christianity, Judaisim, Islam, Hinduism, Sikhism and Buddhism) as well as looking at some non-religious beliefs. They are encouraged to look for the connections and similarities between belief systems, as well as exploring the differences. RE at Giles Brook provides opportunities for children to reflect and analyse, to discuss and debate, to explore and discover, and to learn more about the world in which they live. It encourages children to ask ‘Big questions’ and consider their own and others' spiritual beliefs.