Curriculum (including Early Reading)
Our Curriculum Vision
At Brooklands Primary and Nursery School, our vision is to 'Make Everyday Count; instilling a life-long love of learning'. This is embodied within our curriculum which is structured to prepare our children to be compassionate citizens of our world, valuing the local context and community. It is our duty, through our curriculum, to ensure our children are ready to flourish at secondary school and have the capacity to be successful in what will be 'modern Britain'. For this to happen, the children must reach high standards of literacy and numeracy. They must have a keen sense on what it means to be 'British' in a Britain that celebrates the differences we all have in our life choices, relationships and, indeed, opinions.
Our curriculum, underpinned by current research, ensures our children will be well-rounded individuals who are prepared for the next stage of their journey. It will promote the demonstration of compassion, integrity and a pursuit of excellence in order for our children to reach their potential. Our enquiry-based approach takes children on a journey of memorable learning through rich and purposeful experiences, culminating in authentic outcomes which leave a legacy on the wider world.
Fluency in the core subjects, with reading at the heart, enables access to the full curriculum and is therefore integral to our approach. The curriculum is carefully designed through termly enquiry drivers, History, Geography and Creative Arts, ensuring coverage, progression and retention of transferrable knowledge and skills. It aims to provide inclusive and aspirational environments where learners thrive and build the cultural-capital they need to make aspirational choices about their own future, overcoming any barriers. In order to achieve this our curriculum is underpinned by the following HEART principles:
We follow an enquiry approach where each enquiry is led by a 'Driving Subject'. Each Termly enquiry has a different subject driver:
Autumn Term - History Driver
Spring Term - Geography Driver
Summer Term - Creative Arts Driver
The other subjects are taught as 'Enhancers' (whereby the subject will add something to the enquiry) or are taught discretely.
We have created Long Term Plans which cover the content and knowledge taught starting in EYFS. We strongly believe that the Early Years Curriculum is an essential part of the Whole School Curriculum and therefore have ensured it is incorporated into the whole learning journey instead of it being treated as a separate entity. In Foundation stage, we follow the new Early Years Framework, incorporating our own ideas and values as well as adapting where necessary to meet the needs of our own pupils.
Below are copies of the FHT Key Knowledge Progression Documents that we have implemented throughout school. These have been used to map out our curriculum to ensure knowledge is taught in a sequential manner to allow children to revisit knowledge over their journey throughout Brooklands. This has an ultimate aim that the children will know and remember more over time.
You will notice that each progression document starts with Nursery and ends with 7. We are very keen to ensure our work aligns as closely as possible to the curriculum of our local secondary schools.
Spring Overview of Enquiries
Summer Overview of Enquiries
Key knowledge Progression Documents
Early Reading and Phonics
As a school we using the DfE validated No Nonsense Phonics Skills programme (NNPS) to teach phonics and early reading. Our rigorous and systematic approach to the early reading curriculum, develops children’s accuracy and fluency, building confidence and cultivates an enjoyment for reading. Our commitment to the English Hub demonstrates that reading is of the highest priority at Brooklands. Reading is the gateway to the curriculum, therefore it is fundamental to school improvement with a focus on the quality of education that we provide this for our children. We have enhanced teachers’ knowledge of the teaching of phonics and early reading through whole school training. This high-quality, professional development, provided by Debbie Hepplewhite (the author of NNPS), the English Hub and our Early Reading Lead, is maintained as the reading leader has established an effective weekly coaching system to include practice, observation and feedback to increase teacher effectiveness. All new staff in school receive training in the Autumn term to establish a solid understanding of, and consistency in, the delivery of NNPS.
With the support of the English Hub we have established a data-driven culture to ensure all children make the best possible progress in reading and children can catch up quickly. At all stages, reading attainment is assessed and gaps are addressed quickly and effectively for all children. Any children identified, at any point of their educational journey, become our targeted for additional catch-up support. These children receive rapid intervention. Our rigorous and sequential approach to the early reading interventions develops children’ fluency, confidence and enjoyment in reading. It is supported by research on cognitive load theory, as the teaching of phonemes and early reading skills is planned in small chunks which reduces memory capacity. Termly NTS tests support the assessment and gap analysis which is used to inform teaching and intervention.
All of our children read decodable reading texts in school as part of their shared reading and also take a reading book to share at home. These books are closely matched to the phonemes/graphemes (code) that children have been taught and is systematically reviewed. These decodable reading books are used to build our children’s fluency and confidence by providing the opportunity to apply this knowledge in practice and to ensure that children have a sense of reading independence. Our children love reading and want to read because they can read all of the words in the storybook they take home. There is a visible drive from teachers for our children to be passionate readers, using this as a ‘tool’ to read their way to a promising future.
Our shared reading books are well-pitched to the children’s reading developments but with elements of challenge, linked to the vocabulary, catering for all the abilities within the class.