At Arden Grove we follow the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum during the Nursery and Reception years. In Years 1 and 2 we then follow the National Curriculum (2014).
We strive to ensure our curriculum is broad, balanced and engaging for all of our children, giving everyone access to learning opportunities that will motivate, inspire and enable them to achieve in a safe and positive environment. The staff plan together effectively to ensure we are providing a challenge and inclusivity by meeting the needs of all children. We provide a range of after school clubs including yoga, karate, singing and cooking with the aim of promoting health, well-being and resilience through the acquisition of new skills and encouraging children to take on new challenges.
We value the importance of enhancing our curriculum provision with exciting whole school experiences, including our Health Week, Big Arts Week and for Year 2 a visit to see a London Show and our How Hill residential.
Maths and English is taught daily. Opportunities to link other curriculum subjects for example history, geography, science, computing is done though topics, which change and will be based on the interests of the children and their contributions to the planning.
You can read more about individual subjects and view their corresponding curriculum maps in the sections below.
English is a core curriculum subject and includes speaking, listening, reading, writing and drama. Our principle aim is to develop children’s knowledge, skills and understanding across all these areas.
We follow the Read, Write Inc scheme to teach phonics. This teaches phonics in a lively and engaging way, which encourages children to sound out and blend words quickly. Our phonics lessons are comprised of the speaking, handwriting, listening, spelling and reading elements of Read Write Inc.
In the Early Years, writing is taught through shared writing and small group work, this is guided by Development Matters. Within Key Stage 1 we teach writing within our literacy lessons and are guided by the National Curriculum. The learning is embedded within the topic themes the children are covering and incorporates stories, drama and writing
At Arden Grove we follow the standards outlined in the revised 2014 Mathematics Curriculum. We have daily maths lessons where children use a range of concrete and pictorial resources to ensure understanding of mathematical concepts including addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. As the children develop their understanding, they use more abstract recording methods.
We are also using White Rose Maths to support teaching and learning in Maths.
At Arden Grove we offer a Physical Education Curriculum where we aim to inspire all children to succeed and participate in physical activities. Lessons are taught in a safe and supportive environment. We promote a joy for physical activity and provide opportunities for pupils to become physically confident. This will support their health and fitness and mental well being to then lead active, healthy lifestyles. We aim to inspire pupils to be more physically active, giving opportunities to take part in Physical activity and competitions that build character and help to embed values such as fairness, team work and respect. Lessons develop the children’s Fundamental skills of agility, balance and co ordination as well as develop social and personal skills. We offer a range of afterschool clubs as well as the chance to take part in games at local High Schools with other schools.
When teaching science at Arden Grove Infant and Nursery School, we seek to stimulate and excite pupils’ curiosity about changes and events in the world. We understand that all children have different life experiences and therefore we seek to find out what children know and then give them the opportunities they need to develop their own thinking, building knowledge through practical exploration and problem solving. We want to ensure that all children are inspired, irrespective of gender, to develop an enthusiasm and love of science.
Through carefully planned and sequenced lessons and regular knowledge assessments, we will strive to provide children with a foundation of scientific understanding on which they can build future knowledge and the confidence to challenge themselves. We want children to be able to think scientifically and take risks with their learning and in order to do this we will provide hands-on experiences, carefully chosen trips and extra curriculum opportunities for all children. At Arden Grove Infant and Nursery School we want children to feel passionately about caring for the environment and living things and to develop an understanding of the effects of the everyday choices which we all make.
We believe that computing has a very vital role to play in this generation of young children. Technology already forms an important part of their lives and this role will be even greater in years to come as we begin to prepare our computer scientists for jobs which are yet to be invented. We use computing in many areas of the curriculum to enrich learning opportunities, while also empowering children to conscientious and critical digital citizens. We follow the School’s Curriculum with the main elements of the National Curriculum which gives children experience in using technology. Computing’s major themes are:
- Understanding and using algorithms (a set of instructions).
- Creating simple programmes and solving any problems along the way (debugging).
- Using technology in a purposeful way to store and organise work.
- To use technology safely keeping personal information private and empowering the children to be safe on the Internet.
At Arden Grove when teaching History we begin in the very recent past, looking at the children’s own history; their family experiences and photographs. We also focus on local changes. The use of historical artefacts and visits to local places of interest which help children to understand how and why changes occur. We commemorate significant historical events and use stories from the past to help the pupils' historical understanding. We enhance our curriculum with history days with a focus on key historical figures such as Kings and Queens and local and national key people. We encourage and develop deeper thinking, historical vocabulary, asking questions and the forming of opinions based on what we have found out.
At Arden Grove, we recognise that geography should develop a child’s natural curiosity and fascination about the world. This will lead to a greater understanding of places, people and a greater awareness of their own place within our world and community. It should help to provoke and provide answers to questions about both natural and human aspects of the world. We want children to feel connected to the world around them and recognise the important part we all play in looking after it. Children will have opportunities to explore and investigate their local area and they will seek to make comparisons with other regions in the United Kingdom and the rest of the world. They will learn how to draw and interpret maps and begin to develop the key skills of research, investigation, analysis and problem-solving. Through carefully planned experiences, children will develop skills that enable them to recognise, describe, explain, compare and evaluate natural and human aspects of the world, gaining respect and appreciation of the world we live in, different cultures and ways of life. We encourage and develop deeper thinking, geographical vocabulary, by asking questions and forming opinions based on what we have found out.
As part of our creative curriculum we aim to foster an understanding and enjoyment of art, throughout the school. In Art & Design lessons children are taught to represent in visual form what they observe, remember and imagine. They are encouraged to work practically and imaginatively with a variety of materials, tools and methods, exploring the elements of art and design, including colour mixing, texture, pattern and form in two and three dimensions.
Design and Technology
Design and Technology is taught as part of our creative curriculum in a cross curricular way linking to class themes. In Design and Technology, children are taught new skills and techniques as well as practising those learnt from other areas of the curriculum. These skills are then used creatively to design and make objects using a range of tools and materials. Children are encouraged to evaluate their finished work to see which elements were successful, and how they could improve their work.
At our school we make music an enjoyable learning experience. We encourage children to participate in a variety of musical experiences through which we aim to build up the confidence of all children. Music is a creative and enjoyable activity. It also plays an important part in helping children feel part of our school community. We provide opportunities for all children to create, play, perform and enjoy music, to develop the skills to appreciate a wide variety of musical forms. Whenever possible we arrange for visiting musicians to perform to the children, we are linked with the Norwich Theatre and we have monthly live music assemblies where visiting musicians share a range of instruments and styles. Our Year 1 and Year 2 pupils can join our weekly Songbirds Club.
The Religious Education curriculum is taught in accordance with the new Norfolk Agreed Syllabus, a copy of which may be viewed at the school on request. The children are taught about religions of Christianity, Judaism and Hinduism, in a way that is appropriate to their age and level of understanding. They are taught to have respect for people’s beliefs. Assemblies provide opportunities for moral and spiritual development through the use of a variety of poems, stories, music and occasional visits from representatives of various religions. We have links with the local church and have visitors coming in to take assemblies, as well as year groups having a chance to visit a place of worship. Parents have a right to withdraw their children from religious education and collective worship. Please talk to the Headteacher about alternative provision provided as this will depend on individual circumstances.
Personal, Social and Emotional Development (PSED) is taught in the Foundation stage and Personal, Social and Health Education (PSHE) is taught in Key Stage 1. It is embedded in all we do and is taught discreetly through a variety of ways and across many subject areas, with the intention to encourage and support children to think about and develop a range of essential life skills and qualities.
At Arden Grove we feel it is important that children learn about making good choices. We teach relevant and interesting lessons, which inspire and encourage children to think about and discuss their feelings and viewpoints. ‘Our Code’ promotes these and other values and encourages positive behaviour both at home and at school. To compliment this we also use Jigsaw, a comprehensive whole school programme for PSHE including statutory Relationships and Health Education. It is spiral, progressive and delivers relevant learning experiences to help children develop positive relationships with themselves and others. This mindful approach supports our focus on children’s mental health, wellbeing, social and emotional development.