At St Mary’s, we aim to deliver a well-structured curriculum which is broad and balanced and meets the needs of learners across the spectrum of abilities.
You can see our Curriculum Maps here.
It is based on the key concepts and principles of the Gospel:
- “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven” Faithfulness & Integrity
- “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted” Dignity & Compassion
- “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth” Humility & Gentleness
- “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied” Truth & Justice
- “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy” Forgiveness & Mercy
- “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God” Purity & Holiness
- “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called children of God” Empathy & Peace
- “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of slander against you because of me. Be glad and rejoice for your reward is great in heaven; they persecuted the prophets before you in the very same way” Service & Sacrifice
These Gospel Values are lived out through our aims and vision statement.
Our curriculum is further informed by ‘National Curriculum 2014’ and the five outcomes of the ’Every Child Matters’ agenda.
1). Be healthy (including physical and mental wellbeing)
2). Stay safe (including online)
3). Enjoy and achieve
4). Make a positive contribution
5). Achieve economic well-being
We also strive to underpin our whole learning experience with these 5 key drivers:
1). Spirituality - RE ; prayer; worship; catholicity, reflection; meditation; Gospel Values and behaviour; the Common Good.
2). Enterprise and Knowledge of the World - History, Geography; Computing; fair trade and eco awareness; Skills Builder; independent learning; fair trade; resilience and philosophy for children.
3). Enquiry - DT; Maths; Science; open ended tasks; higher order thinking; independent learning; higher order thinking and mastery.
4). Emotional wellbeing, health and sport – PE and Sport; PSE; Relationships, Learning to respect; citizenship and British values.
5). The Arts – English, Music, Art, Drama and MFL; Culture; festivals.
Our curriculum is designed with these key points in mind:
1). What do we want our children to learn?
a. We teach the RECD and The National Curriculum.
b. Our curriculum is designed for Catholic Christian children living in West London. It is infused with Catholic Social Teaching and links to London.
c. We intend our children to have knowledge and skills in all of the subjects. They master the key skills of reading, writing and number.
2). Why are we teaching it?
a. Children will leave us being able to read and to have a love of reading.
b. We want children to be religiously literate and be experienced in planning liturgies and knowing what it means to be in relationship with God.
c. We prepare the whole child for the next stage of their education so that they can be successful at secondary school and make a positive contribution to society.
3). How are we teaching it?
a. Having a sound understanding of what children have previously learned, teachers talk about prior learning allowing children to make connections with other areas of the curriculum and between subjects.
b. Our curriculum (units of work) builds on prior knowledge which allows our children to retain their learning long term.
Our curriculum is carefully mapped out so that learning happens over time. It is designed to support children’s natural curiosity and their acquisition of knowledge. It offers children the opportunity to work in depth, giving them the time they need to master their learning.
At St. Mary’s, we emphasise the whole person – mind, body and spirit. Personal development is important to help children grow up happy and healthy and in relationship with God who made us, saved us and sustains us. We develop children’s confidence, enhancing their ability to learn, and helping them to grow up to become responsible adults who will contribute to society in a positive way, understanding the Common Good and building the Kingdom of God.
We have a curriculum where pupils engage with their learning it challenges them to think for themselves. It is important that our curriculum is relevant to our children we therefore ensure that our approach is flexible and dynamic and always open to change and modification. For instance there is time for children to consider current real world issues.
We aim to:
Focus on curriculum creativity, enabling pupils and staff to develop opportunities to nurture their own creativity by:
- encouraging imagination and originality
- making time for them to reflect critically
- allowing space for thinking and choice
- giving freedom to fail with the confidence to try again.
Create a culture of collaboration, ensuring an effective and creative learning culture by:
- sharing values and ethos with the whole school community
- promoting the importance of talk and collaboration in consolidating learning
- ensuring everyone has the opportunity to learn from others
- promoting teamwork.
Emphasise cognitive approaches, promoting a creative learning experience in each classroom by:
- allowing teachers to develop their own teaching styles and confidence in knowing what will make a difference for their children and have the biggest impact.
- understanding that learning takes place over time
- design tasks and activities that allow information to be retained in long term memory
- promoting the importance of learning across the curriculum
- encouraging teachers to make children active partners in their learning; and structure tasks to allow teaching for mastery.
Make a real commitment to the community, forging creative links between the parents, parish and school by:
- promoting the importance of dynamic partnership
- involving parents and carers at every opportunity
- giving children and families time to be involved in after school clubs and evening activities, including sports, music, language and culture and those connected with the Parishes and Scouting organisations, by having realistic expectations of homework.
- focusing on the importance of the learning environment in both physical and health/wellbeing terms.
- extending involvement into the local community and beyond.
Promote child- centredness, celebrating the centrality of the children in the school by:
- promoting the personal, social, health and spiritual aspects of the curriculum embedded in all that we to do.
- promoting a culture where children are able to evaluate their learning and know their next steps so that they can effectively choose their own level of challenge (Ready, Steady, Go)
- encouraging teachers to develop each child’s confidence, resilience, self-discipline and understanding of their learning through our 3/4 Bs.
- encouraging teachers to make learning vivid, real and meaningful.
Each subject taught contains key concepts – skills that are required in order to excel in that subject. These concepts run throughout the entirety of a child’s time with us from Early Years until the end of Year 6 and allows a continuity for our children with clear stages of progression from one year to the next and milestones every other year.
Through the focus on ‘key concepts’ we give deeper consideration to progression and continuity of our curriculum. Our emphasis is on mastery and depth of understanding.