Menu
Home Page

Curriculum

‘Fun, experience-based and purposeful.’ 

 

This phrase drives our curriculum and is at the heart of the teaching we bestow upon the children.  At Emmanuel Junior Academy, we want to inspire our children to be life-long learners, by sharing knowledge and skills of different subject areas to prepare them for life beyond.  Creative, whole-school and thematic contents are used to develop the children’s imagination, enhanced by appropriate visits and home learning.

 

Our curriculum is built around the objectives set out in the National Curriculum which now covers the following subjects: English (including Reading, Writing and 'SPaG' - Spelling, Grammar and Punctuation), Mathematics, Science, Religious Education, Computing, Physical Education, History, Geography, Art and Design, Design Technology, Music, Languages and Personal Social Health and Economic education (PSHE).

 

Teaching in the core subjects (English and Mathematics) is fully bespoke to each individual child whilst adhering to our curriculum overviews to ensure they experience the full range, depth and breadth of the national objectives as well being engaging, challenging and interesting.

 

The foundation subjects are taught based on a whole school approach where each term our learning is based around a specific theme, following a clear four stage cycle of learning:

  • Excite
  • Explore
  • Prepare
  • Present

 

As an Anglican and Methodist School, a minimum of one hour a week of the teaching timetable is dedicated to RE. However, in reality, the RE Curriculum and the development of our ‘Christian Values’ underpin every aspect of learning in school. Throughout the school week, children are involved in daily collective worship and there are many opportunities for focussed reflection through the use of Gospel stories and prayer.

 

Afternoon Lessons (B.A.D. Learning)

In our constant drive to improve the ways we teach here at Emmanuel, we have looked at our current ‘Topic’ planning and provision for the pupils and asked for your thoughts and those of your children.  We have decided to change the way we teach these subjects.  The information about this you can find below.

 

B.A.D. Learning (Basic, Advanced, Deepening)

Chris Quigley is an educational specialist and works with schools to improve their delivery of lessons in school; his role is also to support teachers and management with the recent changes to the national curriculum.  We have now signed up to deliver lessons loosely based upon his ideas and methods in our afternoon ‘Topic’ based lessons.  B.A.D. is an acronym that he uses in this work that describes the concept of Basic, Advanced and Deepening of understanding.  Basically, his work aims to bring pupils to a deeper understanding of their work by looking at the same knowledge of a subject in a deeper way.  For instance, a pupil could understand what the main parts of a plant are called at a ‘Basic’ level: stem, petals, roots, etc.  To have an ‘Advanced’ understanding in this, they could say why the different parts of the plant are important and what their function is: a root system is needed to support the plant and anchor it to the ground, but also to draw water up to help the plant grow.  Lastly, to a Deepening level of understanding where a pupil could evaluate their learning: how would you prove that roots were essential for a plant to grow?  Do all plants need or use a root system and, if not, why?

As a school we have taken this concept and planning structure to modify what we currently do in school, alongside the comments we received from parents.  Furthermore, we are looking particularly at our use of questioning in school to help pupils improve and develop their understanding and create a better and more consistent level of challenge.

 

Why?

Based on current research, the following reasons are given to support the use of effective questioning in the classroom.

 

  • Increased levels of pupil engagement
  • Lessons become focused quickly so we become more productive
  • Inclusive as children can come up with their own ideas at different levels
  • Develops respect for others’ point of view
  • Enables the teacher to assess prior and current knowledge
  • Encourages problem-solving
  • Reveals misunderstanding
  • Identifies success criteria in a different way
  • Promotes discussion
  • Deepens thinking and reasoning skills
  • Encourages skills of grouping, organising thinking and making generalisations
  • Encourages debate

 

Where does it come from?

Bloom’s Taxonomy

 

The most famous piece of research into questioning styles and how to deepen the thinking of pupils. Towards the top of the pyramid, things become more difficult and thinking is deepened.

 

Frozen Planet

For our current topic, we aim to deepen the understanding of the pupils through differentiated tasks  and questioning skills.  Here are the main areas we are focusing upon over the Spring Term as a school:

  • What is the climate of the polar caps like?

  • How does life survive in the ‘Polar Regions'?

  • What is Global Warming?

  • How does Global Warming potentially effect the Polar ice caps?

  • What is the ‘Water Cycle’?

  • What qualities does a person need to be an Arctic explorer?

 

You can support your children by working on our homework activities or looking at the above questions as a revision or pre-learning activity.

 

Thank you again for your continued support.

The Emmanuel Team

What will my child learn about whilst at Emmanuel?

Top