The Elmridge Curriculum

Introduction

Our main aim is to provide quality experiences in all aspects of school life so enabling the children to be happy, successful and keen to learn, thus helping them to grow into young people who are fulfilled and able to make a positive contribution to society.

“They come this way only once so we should litter their pathways with quality experiences”

We do this in the context of a warm, welcoming and respectful ethos so that our caring ways are apparent to all who stay with us and so that our children will develop strong and correct positive values.

We are aiming to educate the whole child by presenting a total experience which is right and relevant to his/her individuality, thus fostering the child’s intellectual, physical, cultural, moral and spiritual development.

We recognise that change and progress are an important part of everyday life and, therefore, aim to equip children to cope and flourish in dealing with the challenges faced by such changes.

 

Timetabled lessons

In putting the curriculum into practice we aim to ensure that –

  • Children’s skills and knowledge progress smoothly from teacher to teacher from Early Years Foundation Stage to KS1, from KS1 to KS2 and from primary school to secondary school so that the work at one stage follows on naturally from the work of the stage before.
  • Excellence is pursued through rigorous coverage of learning objectives delivered via challenging and stimulating lessons
  • Every child’s learning programme is varied, balanced and each part of it    relates to the others.
  • Children are taught in small groups, as part of a whole class or individually, to match their particular needs. Children who learn more slowly or have exceptional ability are catered for as an integral part of the work of the school.
  • Gender stereotyping is avoided
  • As far as possible learning is rooted in the pupil’s personal experience and relates to practical everyday needs
  • Lessons are designed to prepare children for life in a society which recognises the different cultural backgrounds of its citizens.We teach a broad and balanced curriculum based on the 2014 National Curriculum but tailored to the specific needs of Elmridge pupils. Opportunities for the key assessments of the children’s progress will be incorporated into teachers’ planning; time is also provided for pupils to reflect and evaluate their progress towards key targets and read and act upon their teachers’ written feedback. Homework is set to support pupils’ learning in core subjects from Reception to 6.


Collective worship

At Elmridge, themes covered in Collective Worship represent many of the key curriculum aims of the school. Collective worships are carefully planned to link into curriculum areas and communicate whole school priorities. Guest speakers often visit the school including representatives from different faiths, emergency services, fund raisers for charities and experts in particular fields.

Extra-curricular activities

The school offers a wide variety of extra-curricular activities to enhance pupils’ learning experiences. Over three quarters of the pupils attend a club during the year with over half the pupils attending a club every half term. The following clubs are regularly offered to pupils during the school year: cross country, football, netball, lacrosse, tennis, athletics, chess, dance multiskills, Spanish, advanced mathematics, advanced reading, choir and film club.  They will be age-range regulated (due to numbers) and may vary throughout the school year. Many of these activities are offered by Elmridge staff but a number of others are offered by outside agencies. Several clubs run by outside agencies are funded by the additional sport funding grant.

 

Cross curricular links

In Key Stage One pupils learn geography, history, art and DT through cross curricular themes. These themes also offer the opportunity to implement English and mathematics skills.

Subjects are taught discreetly in Key Stage Two in order to get the pupils ready for secondary education and give them a deeper and more rigorous learning experience. Nevertheless, natural links between core and foundation subjects in Key Stage Two are encouraged and developed eg history and English, design technology and mathematics.

Safeguarding, entrepreneurial, spiritual, moral, social, cultural and personal areas of learning are also incorporated into lessons wherever possible.

 

Transition to secondary school

In Year 5 and Year 6 pupils get the opportunity to spend a whole day in a local secondary school as well as experience some individual lessons. Older pupils have also enjoyed days at a local university learning about control technology. Elmridge works with “We Aspire” a careers advisory organisation who deliver workshops to Year 5 and 6 pupils to heighten their awareness of careers. There is an annual careers fair for Year 6 pupils in the summer term.

Over 90% of Elmridge pupils sit entrance exams to local grammar schools. In order to support them in the preparation for these assessments the curriculum is adapted in Year 5 to incorporate some weekly work on verbal reasoning. An extra-curricular club in advanced mathematics and non-verbal reasoning is also offered to the Year 5 pupils in the spring and summer terms.

 

Trips and residentials

In every year group pupils enjoy a number of trips relating to curricular themes and timetabled subjects. Museums, concert halls, theatres, zoos, country parks, seaside towns and historic buildings are all regularly visited by classes.

Year 4 undertake a three day residential each year in Lancashire in the spring whilst Year 6 spends five days in the Lake District on an outward bounds course every summer.

 

Sports enhancement

On Wednesday afternoon the school’s regular sports coach works with groups of pupils offering additional opportunities outside the usual curriculum delivery.

Inclusion sessions offer pupils who do not get regularly get involved in after school sport the opportunity to do extra sport in a more relaxed, supportive environment. Leadership development sessions are also delivered culminating in older pupils getting the opportunity to act as sports leaders for younger pupils. Gifted pupils are also supported in both sports sport specific and non-sport specific sessions.

 

Sports festivals and competitions

Each academic year each Elmridge class attends a sports festival where they compete against pupils of the same age from other schools. Every child from Years 1-6 participate in the festivals which are organised by Trafford School Sports Partnership.

In addition Key Stage Two pupils get the opportunity to compete at inter-school level in cross country, football, netball, lacrosse and athletics. The school is regularly entered into leagues and tournaments.

 

Wider Opportunities music

On an annual basis, pupils in Years 3 and 5 get the opportunity to learn an instrument free of charge for a term. The pupils get taught an hour a week and the project culminates with a performance in front of the school with parents invited.

 

Charity fundraising

Every term pupils get the opportunity to raise money for charity by wearing casual clothes and bringing in a contribution. On these days there is an assembly about the chosen charity to inform the pupils about the work it does and what will happen to the money that is raised.

The Elmridge school community participate annually in fund raising for Children in Need and Comic Relief.

Pupils in Upper Key Stage Two organise cake sales and book sales for charity and members of staff have even been known to run marathons to raise money for good causes!

 

Curriculum days/weeks

Every year subjects are focussed and their profiles raised through special days eg World Book Day or International Languages Day. On those days pupils will move from their regular timetable to focus on one particular subject for a day. This enables them to work in more depth in that subject and try activities that may normally, due to lack of time, be impossible to complete in a day. Pupils often attend a celebratory assembly where they present their work.

Each half term, the school has a theme day when each class produces a display for the corridor. The displays change on a two yearly cycle and can reflect special historic events or cultural events eg centenary of WW1 or the Olympics.

 

Art projects

Pupils from each class are given the opportunity to work in small groups on art projects. They undertake the projects with a specialist art teacher and The Dunham Trust artist in residence who have the skills, materials and tools to enable the pupils to create fantastic work such as ceramics, sculpture and large scale paintings and tapestry that wouldn’t generally be possible with a whole class setting.