Curriculum

Mighty oaks from little acorns grow.....’  

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‘Curriculum’ is a word comprising all learning and other opportunities that our children experience in school.  At St Nicholas Catholic Primary School, children follow the subjects of the National Curriculum, with the addition of Religious Education, cross-curricular elements and optional extra-curricular activities.  At St Nicholas, we aim to enhance and support the development of the whole child through a broad and balanced curriculum that will engage and excite children, nurturing a love of learning.   Our children, staff and parents have defined a quality curriculum as one that is underpinned by the principles: 

A         C         O         R         N

A: Adventurous, Awe-Inspiring, Accessible
C: Creative, Child-led, challenging
O: Original, Opportunities, Opens eyes and minds
R: Real, Risk-Taking, Responsive
N: Nurturing, Never-Forgotten
 
The principles expressed in this curriculum statement underpin long, medium and short-term planning at St Nicholas School. Curriculum Overview Y1-6 (below) is an overview of our curriculum for all subjects from Years 1-6.

How we deliver our curriculum

Our curriculum is designed as a two year rolling programme to complement the vertical class structure we operate from Years 1-6.  The two year cycle ensures we meet all National Curriculum requirements and planned learning covers all objectives for the Key Stage. 

We organise the different subjects each term to deliver a ‘topic’ based approach which we call a ‘Learning Journey’.  Each Learning Journey is designed to cover the National Curriculum objectives for each subject and respond to the interests and needs of the children.  At St Nicholas each Learning Journey is underpinned by the ACORN principles expressed in our curriculum statement. 

Learning Journeys are shared across each of the teaching teams in Nursery and Reception, Years 1 and 2, Years 3 and 4, and Years 5 and 6.  This means that all 3 classes within a team have the same Learning Journey at the same time.  Teachers plan together to design the Learning Journey for all 3 classes ensuring the curriculum is broad and balanced and that there is consistency for all children in their learning. 

St Nicholas is very much a community so to reflect this we enjoy finding and developing opportunities for the children to share and learn alongside each other.  For this reason there are times when we engage in whole school Learning Journeys.  These Learning Journeys follow a whole school theme that teachers then adapt to reflect the age, skills, needs and interests of the children in their classes. 

We recognise that not all subjects can naturally ‘fit’ within a Learning Journey and so these subjects are taught in a discrete way.  Literacy, Mathematics, PE, PSHE, Science and Religious Education are planned and delivered separately to the Learning Journey but we aim to make links where possible in the children’s learning. 

As a Catholic school Religious Education is embedded in all aspects of school life.  The children follow the Diocesan ‘God Matters’ religious education scheme, which forms the basis of the school’s Catholic RE curriculum.  God Matters is used throughout our school, it is divided up into different themes which are revisited and developed each year from Foundation Stage to Year 6. 

Throughout the year each class leads a learning assembly for the whole school and parents are invited.  Each class decides on the learning they would like to share then plans collaboratively how they will do this.  Children enjoy the opportunity to share the learning that is important to them.  These assemblies reflect St Nicholas as an inclusive learning community that incorporates children, staff and parents learning and sharing together.