Our School Curriculum
'Preparing children for a bright future in a changing world.'
At Heather Avenue Infant School, we understand and recognise the needs of all our children and families, and in response offer a story rich, topic based curriculum, underpinned by the Early Years Foundation Stage or National Curriculum.
We believe that each child should complete their time with us as an enthusiastic learner across all areas of a broad and balanced curriculum, ready for the next phase of their educational journey. We have high aspirations for all our learners and believe that each has the potential to become a fluent reader, competent writer and able mathematician with prerequisites to access and succeed across all areas.
Children are encouraged to develop skills for learning, including the ability to listen, discuss, think, question and reflect, investigate, create and build on knowledge and understanding. Children are encouraged to work collaboratively and independently achieving their best in all they do.
We believe that each child should develop an understanding of their own emotions, what they feel like and ways to regulate these in order to keep safe. We foster attitudes of kindness and compassion, supporting children to make a positive contribution in all their endeavours. By promoting positive mental and physical awareness, we aim to provide children with the skills to lead happy, healthy and safe lives.
We strive to prepare pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of the next phase of their education and future life by giving them a wide range of real-life, memorable experiences.
The arts maintain a high profile within our curriculum, which has resulted in us achieving an Arts Mark School status. We also focus on sustainability, which is taught across the curriculum to support our belief in ensuring that our pupils are aware of, and respectful of, environmental issues. Our achievements have been recognised through the Eco Green Flag award. Additionally, we have brought global and cultural facets to our curriculum, by focussing on specific countries each term. This has resulted in us achieving 4 International Awards from the British Council.
You can read more about individual subjects and view their corresponding curriculum maps in the sections below. Our Curriculum Maps detail KS1 progression. EYFS progression is detailed in the EYFS Curriculum Map.
We believe that good communication skills are of prime importance. Our children develop expertise in speaking, listening, reading, writing and drama during daily English sessions linked to the requirements of the Early Years Foundation Stage or National Curriculum. We aim to achieve very high standards of literacy throughout the school.
Our pupils learn to become enthusiastic and critical readers of stories, poetry and non-fiction texts. The children are introduced to reading using the Phonics Programme; Read, Write Inc. Phonics (RWI). Children receive a daily phonics session and have RWI books to read at home which are tailored to their ability. The children are regularly assessed to support their reading progress and receive additional intervention support if they require it. Parents/carers are essential partners in the learning process as they share books with their children and help to promote a true love of reading. Daily story times are timetabled in school time to further promote the children's love of reading.
The children are taught to enjoy writing and see the value of it. They learn to communicate meaning in narrative and non-fiction texts and spell and punctuate accurately. Specific targets are used with each child to aid this development. The school follows Pie Corbett's Talk for Writing method in this area.
Mathematics is taught daily via discrete lessons ensuring full coverage of the Early Year Foundation Stage or National Curriculum requirements using the Power Maths programme. Power Maths is a whole-class mastery approach that empowers every child to understand and succeed. It combines interactive teaching tools, high-quality textbooks and teacher knowledge to equip children with a deep and long-lasting understanding.
Teachers ensure that children are given opportunities to work with concrete, pictorial and abstract resources supporting the children's knowledge and skill progression of mathematical concepts.
We provide all our children with a varied P.E curriculum. Children take part in at least 2 timetabled hours of P.E each week with extracurricular clubs available after school and various sporting events planned throughout the year.
Annually we hold a Healthy Living week including a Sports day for all children. Additionally, each year group takes part in a Multi-skills festival and Rugby festival.
Via our Sports partnership and within our Trust of schools — sporting events are planned for multiple schools to attend, and we take part in many of these.
Through scientific enquiry, children develop the skills of observation, investigation, recording and analysis of information. By engaging in practical activities, they are taught to plan, predict and hypothesise; always thinking carefully about what makes a fair test.
We have an annual science day when the children complete a variety of science activities in mixed age groups.
The gardens and wild areas in our grounds are used to enhance learning about the natural environment.
The children are taught to use computers and the Internet to find things out, to develop ideas, to make things happen, to exchange and share information and to review, modify and evaluate their work.
E-safety is of paramount importance, and we deliver a range of E-safety lessons throughout the year in line with curriculum recommendations.
There are computers in each classroom and all classes are connected to the Internet. Each class has an Interactive whiteboard and access to a set of laptops and Ipads for whole class use. The children are taught to create, modify and debug simple programmes and use a range of ICT equipment to develop coding skills.
Children also have opportunities to use digital cameras, video cameras, computer based microscopes and visualisers to support their work in all aspects of the curriculum.
Our study of History aims to fire the children's curiosity about the past.
They learn about people’s lives and lifestyles. They find out about the significant men, women and events from the more recent and distant past, encompassing those from both Britain and the wider world. Year 2 children also focus on the Royal Family.
The children are encouraged to listen and respond to stories and use sources of information including artefacts, to answer questions. They learn, in increasing detail, as they pass through the school, how the past is different from the present. Children are taught key historical vocabulary including past, present, now and before.
We encourage children to acquire a real sense of the past and of the changes that are brought about during the passage of time. We teach them how these changes have affected the daily lives of ordinary people.
Our children are taught to ask geographical questions about people, places and environments and learn geographical language to support this.
They use geographical skills and resources such as maps and photographs. They are encouraged to carry out geographical enquiry inside and outside the classroom.
During the year the children learn about different countries through the medium of international weeks. They learn about their own and other cultures and enjoy visits from people from all walks of life.
We embed high quality arts holistically across our creative topic based curriculum, aiming to foster an understanding and enjoyment of art throughout the school. We provide children with activities to experiment, invent and create their own works of art, craft and design, allowing them to make increasingly informed and creative choices of tools and techniques for a given purpose. We learn about a variety of different artists and their artwork, aiming to inspire the children’s own artwork. In each class, children work independently and collaboratively to produce 2D and 3D displays. Every other year we hold an 'Open Studio' event where all children showcase some of their fantastic art work. We also provide a wide range of engaging arts and cultural based opportunities throughout the year. We ensure all opportunities are inclusive of all, as well as providing authentic experiences such as theatre trips or visiting artists, enhancing children’s enjoyment and achievement as well as facilitating personal progression.
Design & Technology
Design and Technology is taught as part of our creative curriculum in a cross curricular way linking to class themes.
Children work on a variety of projects; they create designs, make prototypes using construction equipment and other materials, make their finished product and evaluate their work. They do this using a variety of tools and techniques.
We believe Music is very important and we actively promote children's musical development.
At Heather Avenue we use music to enhance personal and social skills, cultural awareness, creative and expressive development and co-ordination skills.
Children are taught to create music, to listen to and appraise music and to perform through the music program Charanga. In addition, children are involved in a weekly sing-a-long session and we offer a range of music clubs, including choir. We also have a peripatetic piano teacher who visits the school twice a week, to give those children who wish to learn an excellent basis for future development in music.
We are always eager to broaden our horizons in the music department, and participate in local musical events, including the Norfolk County Music Festival, as well as holding various musical events throughout the school year and inviting professional musicians into the school.
We believe that moral and spiritual education is part of all children’s emotional wellbeing and ties in with elements of religious education.
We teach Religious Education in accordance with the Norfolk Agreed Syllabus 2020. It is by law required to be of a multi-faith nature whilst reflecting the mainly Christian traditions of the United Kingdom.
We have daily acts of collective worship which are broadly Christian in nature.
We aim to help children develop beliefs in line with our school vision “To prepare children for a bright future in a changing world”.
Guardians have the right to withdraw children from Religious Education lessons and from Collective Worship. Should any guardian wish to exercise this right, they should make appropriate arrangements with the Head teacher.
Personal, Social, Health and Economic
PSHE lessons are taught in order to promote the emotional, social, health and economic development of children and young people. It includes:
- The acquisition of information on a range of health issues that are relevant to their age, maturity and understanding including emotional health and well-being, relationships, diet and exercise and safety.
- The development of emotional and social skills including skills for learning, achieving, managing change, achieving economic well-being and looking after our health.
- The exploration and clarification of values, including British values, and beliefs including respect, morality and an understanding of cultural diversity.
At Heather Avenue we utilise the PATHS resources to support our teaching of PSHE.