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Curriculum Development

The Foundation Stage

 Our youngest children from 3-5 years of age follow a carefully planned curriculum which embraces the four principles of the Early Years Foundation Stage. These focus on the following:

•  A unique child with the emphasis on Child Development, Inclusive Practice, Keeping Safe and Health and Well-being 

•  Positive Relationships- Respecting each other, Parents as Partners, Supporting Learning and the importance of a Key Person 

•  Enabling Environments Observation, Assessment and Planning, Supporting Every Child, the Learning Environment and the Wider Context

•  Learning and Development, Play and Exploration, Active Learning, Creativity and Critical thinking 

 

Through carefully structured play activities, three prime curricular areas are followed:

•  Personal, Social and Emotional Development

•  Communication and Language

•  Physical Development

 

Followed by four specific curricular areas:

•  Literacy

•  Mathematics

•  Understanding the World

•  Expressive Art and Design

 

The children are active learners and learn through play. A balance between child-initiated and adult initiated activities takes place both indoors and outdoors. Detailed observations and discussions determine the content of the flexible curriculum offered and learning diaries are kept which help to promote the partnership between the Foundation Stage staff, parents and children. The information shared, is used to design the future learning experiences for each child.

Curriculum Planning for Children in Key Stages 1 (5-7 years of age) and Key Stage 2 (7-11 years of age)

Our school curriculum is designed to inspire and motivate our young people to develop an enjoyment of learning and an understanding of the importance of becoming a learner, which will stay with them throughout their lives and prepare them well for the future.

We use the local environment, culture and expertise, as much as we can when developing our learning programmes, so that the children can understand its relevance and gain first-hand experience. They can see for themselves the significance and impact of what they have learnt; they can be active in the learning choices and processes, whilst still developing the skills, understanding and knowledge needed for a 21st Century National Curriculum.

What do our children learn about?

Core Subjects

Foundation Subjects

All Linked with

English

History

 

Spiritual, Moral and Cultural

Maths

Geography

Personal and Health Education

Science

Art

Citizenship

 

Music

Educational Visits

 

 

Design and Technology

Collective Worship

 

 

PE and Games

Community Cohesion

 

Primary Foreign   Languages (French)

Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning

 

Religious Education

 

 

 

Computing skills are taught and then integrated throughout the other curricular subjects

English

The key to becoming a successful learner is to be able to communicate effectively and ultimately to be able to access for yourself, the knowledge and skills that are important to you. Being able to speak confidently in a range of situations and to read and write competently, is a most essential part of the learning at Furzeham School and opens the door to most other areas of learning. We focus on reading; including comprehension, phonics and whole word recognition, writing; including grammar, handwriting and spelling and composition.

Mathematics

Daily mathematics sessions are taught across the school, emphasising the importance of logical reasoning, problem solving, abstract thinking and their practical application in everyday life.  Our intention is to equip pupils with a powerful tool to help them understand and change their lives. We teach children how to express themselves mathematically both verbally and using written recorded methods, mental calculation strategies and how to become a creative thinker and see connections.

Science

Science stimulates and excites curiosity about phenomena and events in the world around us, and the careful observation skills which underpin this, help us to know and understand our world better and the important changes which are taking place in it. 

French

French is taught as a modern foreign language in every classroom and our teachers are trained to integrate this into everyday learning activities.

Physical Education

All of our children experience daily physical exercise, sometimes as full gymnastics, games, swimming or dance lessons but also in Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 as ‘Wake and Shake’ sessions, which promote an active lifestyle.  We have achieved the ‘Active Mark’ award and offer a wide range of physical activities and clubs (please see the club list).  We use our Sports Premium funding thoughtfully and aspire to offering the best quality experiences.  We are part of the Torbay Sports Partnership and work closely with local primary and secondary schools in the area to take part in festivals, competitions, training and development.  A wide range of structured sporting activities are delivered by Premier sports at lunchtimes and during lessons and include such things as; dodge ball, fencing, short tennis, tag rugby and more. We arrange visits from celebrity coaches and athletes on a regular basis; Olympians, Exeter Chiefs, Torquay United etc.

Religious Education

We follow the Devon R.E document which focuses on two main aspects;

Learning about religion: what people believe, what people do and how they express it and making sense of who we are, making sense of life and making sense of right and wrong.

These two aspects are taught and incorporated mainly through the teaching of Christianity, as is the legal requirement, as well as learning about the other main principal religions of Great Britain. Ecological issues are also explored and feelings about personal issues.

Music

All of the children experience music activities which include listening, singing, performance and composition. We have an extensive range of instruments including; Samba instruments, African Djembe drums, metallophones, hand chimes and much more! Whole class musical instrument tuition is offered to all children in KS2 at some time so that they have the opportunity to decide if they would like to take this further and also individual guitar, woodwind, drumming and piano lessons take place on site.  The cost of the tuition ranges dependent on family circumstances, and we actively search out possible funding for interested children.  We have close connections with the Brixham Town Band and the Torbay Association for Performing Arts. Additional music tuition sessions can be arranged on request.

Performing Arts

We maximise the opportunity to give the children a chance to perform; we have a class showcase where parents are invited to come along and share children’s learning and see them perform. We also take part in local events and the Torbay Music Festival at the International Riviera Centre. We also enjoy putting on our Key Stage 2 summer production at Brixham Academy at the end of the summer term.

Computing

Competency with computing through the use of computers, handheld devices, tablets and other technological resources helps to widen the opportunities for learning and we teach the skills and their application in order to make the most of this. Technology is readily available in the classrooms and across the school, ensuring that we can teach both large and small group sessions and so that individuals can access resources when needed. We have laptops and iPad as well as digital cameras, microphones, video recording equipment, interactive whiteboards and much more and a wide range of software. We also have a sound system for the hall and overhead projector. We have recently used Green Screen equipment to film virtual presentations and the children are encouraged to access apps at home to support their learning. From time to time, some of our older children have also been able to access Brixham Academy resources.  We have a full time IT technical lead person on–site that also supports learning and curriculum development.

Educational Visits and Residential Opportunities

In order to enhance our curriculum and make learning experiences meaningful, we arrange as many educational visits as is practical and economically possible. We arrange regular visits into the immediate locality such as the woods, beaches, harbour and town, as well as further afield and we offer the opportunity in Years 5 and 6 to experience a  residential visit at Potheridge House, promoting independence and self-reliance and the chance to access activities not readily available at home.

Extra-curricular Activities

We offer wide range of opportunities in addition to the usual school curriculum such as performing arts, dance, art and craft, physical activities, environment and gardening clubs and many more.

Collective Worship

Collective Worship provides an opportunity for our school to come together to worship God, foster a sense of community and to promote pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development and to:-

  • promote a sense of ‘awe and wonder’
  • help children experience and understand the nature and language of worship
  • encourage the adults and children in our school, to respect themselves and to respect others, their cultures, their differences and their opinions.
  • encourage them to reflect, think deeply and consider and express the emotions and ideas that relate to the their own beliefs and those of others
  • celebrate all aspects of school life, sharing the gifts and talents of our children
  • support our whole school curriculum especially Personal and Social Education  and to help children to make connections between Collective Worship/RE and other lessons
  • develop in our children a sense of care and tolerance and the courage to take responsibility for their own actions 
  • provide an opportunity for stillness and reflection in what is often a very busy, active day.

We recognise that in our school we have children from a variety of faith backgrounds and that many children have no religious background at all. Great care is taken during Collective Worship to ensure that all children feel valued and special and that their integrity as human beings is consistently upheld.  Collective Worship is an inclusive activity, addressing many issues relating to different cultures and races, gender issues and family beliefs.

Enrichment

At Furzeham Primary we offer a broad and balanced curriculum that is enriched in a number of ways to excite our children’s appetite for learning.

Visits

Our school is situated on a hill above the beautiful Brixham fishing port which provides easy access to harbour, town and local beaches. Across from our school is Furzeham green where we hold our Sports Day and Summer fayre. Our children enjoy events in the local community and enjoy learning about local history. We have only just secured our very own mini bus which is intended to take us to more areas of interests outside of our local area.

We also provide opportunities for our children to experience learning further afield, for example travelling to Paignton Zoo and Potheridge House on Dartmoor in Year 5 & 6.

Clubs

We have an exciting range of clubs for our children to participate in that are run by staff and outside providers. They include sport, music & science. These clubs take place after school and during the lunch-hour.  Clubs is a priority for us this year so please continue to see our Clubs Section as it develops.

Links

Our school has a links with a school in South Africa and pen pals with a school in USA.  These links mean that our children benefit from opportunities to learn about different cultures. We also link with regionally choir and develop positive role models for budding musicians. Performances from the school choir in the town several times each year including a visit to a residential home for the elderly and singing at public events. 

Community Links

As well as making the most of Battery Gardens and places that make up our local area we have many local community members visiting our school and contributing to our children’s education. Whether it be older community members sharing their memories of living through the blitz, fire fighters from the station giving safety tips we promote and value these relationships.  Excellent links with the secondary schools including Brixham College and Churston Grammar, including having developed an early transition programme for some pupils in Year 6.

Special Educational Needs and Gifted and Talented Children

All our classes contain children of all abilities. Sometimes children need extra help because of a learning or physical difficulty, or because their behaviour requires a consistent longer term programme to bring about improvement. These children are usually identified by the class teacher. If the teacher sees the need for additional school support, they will contact you to discuss their concern so that you can work together in partnership. All class teachers work in conjunction with Mrs Shuttleworth our SENDCO, (Special Educational & Disability Needs Co-coordinator) and she will work with and advise class teachers on the suitable learning strategies that could be used to help.  This information and a record of the child's progress will be kept and discussed with you. We have a high proportion of experienced Teaching Assistants who work on pecific activities with children with Special Needs. Please see our SEN policy and Local Offer which are available on our website.

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