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Wider Curriculum

Art

 

Art and design continues to be a much loved and enjoyed subject for many of our children. At St Laurence, children are given opportunities to be creative, express themselves and explore their ideas by experimenting, inventing and creating their own varied works of art using a range of materials. From joining us in Year 3 until they leave us at the end of Year 6, children learn how to draw, paint, sculpt, sew and explore a varied range of design techniques. They create personal sketchbooks to record their observations and show individual development of skills. Children also develop their knowledge of famous artists, designers and craft makers and understand how art plays an important part of culture and society.

 

Throughout the year, each year group focuses on different themes across each term to ensure continued interest in the subject as well as acquiring new knowledge and skills. Carefully planned activities develop children’s techniques, including their control and their use of materials. During the summer term, a celebration of children’s creative work from across the school is shared and enjoyed with our annual art exhibition event.

 

French

 

At St Laurence Church Junior School we believe that the learning of an additional language provides a valuable educational, social and cultural experience for pupils. It helps them to develop communication skills, including key skills of speaking and listening and extends their knowledge of how language works. Learning another language gives children an additional perspective on the world, encouraging them to understand their own cultures and those of others.

The government changes mean that the teaching of Modern Foreign Languages is now compulsory at Key Stage Two. The school’s Scheme of Work is planned to reflect this new curriculum, encouraging the children to learn not only about the culture of France, but also allowing them to become familiar with some useful aspects of the language.

French lessons take place within class with differentiation being offered through visual and practical activities as well as peer and teacher support.

The curriculum encourages the children's engagement with the subject through practical activities including interactive songs, repetition of vocabulary, role play and much more. The aim is to allow the children to experience the culture and language on a visual and functional level in order to offer a degree of confidence as they progress through their academic and social life.

 

Computing and ICT

 

Technology is a rapidly changing and developing part of our lives. At St Laurence Church Junior School we aim to use this powerful tool to provide children with learning opportunities which allow them to become digitally literate, develop their computational thinking skills, approach technology positively and creatively and develop e-safety awareness. We follow the ‘Switched on Computing’ scheme which caters for complete coverage of the national curriculum programmes of study for computing. As their knowledge and skills develop throughout Key Stage Two, children will collaborate to use a range of devices and programmes across the curriculum to support their understanding of computing. As part of our curriculum, children learn how to design, write and debug programs allowing them to use simple algorithms (instructions) to achieve specific goals. Children are taught how computer networks provide multiple services and the opportunities they offer for communication and collaboration, such as the Internet. Computing is integrated across the curriculum to support digital literacy. In maths, children will produce spreadsheets and graphs, as well as using laptops and iPads for research and recording purposes in other subjects. The teaching of e-safety runs through the core our computing curriculum, and each year children participate in activities which promote staying safe online as part of Safer Internet Day.

 

Physical Education

 

St Laurence Junior School provides all pupils with up to two lessons of quality and active PE lessons a week which includes an indoor and outdoor timetabled slot. The key areas of PE that are delivered at least once every academic year are: Games (including invasion, striking and fielding, and net and wall), Gymnastics, Dance and Athletics.

As part of the National Curriculum requirements for swimming, Year 3 pupils receive weekly swimming lessons where each class will visit the local swimming baths once a term. In addition, to support swimming development and water safety skills further, Year 4 pupils also receive the same weekly swimming lessons.

Our school also supports Year 5 and 6 with developing orienteering skills and we offer the opportunity for Year 4 to receive additional outdoor adventurous activities. These activities cover the ‘Outdoor and Adventurous Activities’ section of the curriculum. 

All children at our school are offered the same opportunities, including the options to participate in extra-curricular activities as well as a variety of sporting events throughout the year. We have a range of before and after school clubs running throughout the week which often include: football, dance, gymnastics, archery, table tennis, netball, drama and tag-rugby.

In addition to this, physical activity is encouraged during break and lunch with a wide range of equipment available. Young Leaders are deployed throughout the year, delivering simple fun activities to encourage, engage and inspire a more active lunchtime.

As well as lesson time, there are several house competitions throughout the year. This encourages intra-school competition. The events are active, enjoyable and carried out in the right sporting manner.

Finally, many children, particularly those who participate in our sports clubs go on to represent the school in inter-school fixtures and events. This includes a range of sports and fixtures and is a great way to develop team work and sportsmanship skills.

 

 

PSHE

 

At St Laurence Church Junior School, we follow a PSHE scheme called Jigsaw. Jigsaw brings together Personal, Social and Health Education, emotional literacy, social skills and spiritual development along with Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) into a weekly lesson programme. All year groups work on the same theme at the same time. These themes are:

 

Half term 1: Being me in the World covers a wide range of topics, including a sense of belonging, welcoming others and being part of a school community, a wider community, and a global community; it also looks at children’s rights and responsibilities, working and socialising with others, and pupil voice.

 

Half term 2: Celebrating differences focuses on similarities and differences and teaches about diversity, such as disability, racism, power, friendships, and conflict; children learn to accept everyone’s right to ‘difference’, and we explore the concept of ‘normal’; bullying – what it is and what it isn’t, including cyber and homophobic bullying.

 

Half term 3: Dreams and goals aims to help children think about their hopes and dreams, their goals for success, what personal strengths are, and how to overcome challenges, via team work skills and tasks. There is also a focus on enterprise and fundraising. Children learn about experiencing and managing feelings of pride, ambition, disappointment, success; and they get to share their aspirations, the dreams and goals of others in different cultures/countries, and their dreams for the world.

 

Half term 4: Healthy me covers two main areas of health: Emotional health (relaxation, being safe, friendships, mental health skills, body image, relationships with food, managing stress) and Physical health (eating a balanced diet, physical activity, rest and relaxation, keeping clean, drugs and alcohol, being safe, first aid).

 

Half term 5: Relationships has a wide focus, looking at diverse topics such as families, friendships, pets and animals, and love and loss. A vital part of this unit is about safeguarding and keeping children safe; this links to cyber safety and social networking. Children learn how to deal with conflict, their own strengths and self-esteem. They have the chance to explore roles and responsibilities in families, and look at stereotypes.

 

Half term 6: Changing me deals with change of many types, from growing from young to old, assertiveness, self-respect and safeguarding. Each year group thinks about looking ahead, moving year groups or the transition to secondary school.

 

In Year 5 and 6 puberty and how babies are made and grow are treated sensitively and are designed to meet children’s needs. Self and body image, attraction and accepting change are diverse subjects for children to explore in Year 5 and 6.

 

Integrated Curriculum

 

At St Laurence Church Junior School, to ensure broad and balanced learning, we teach an integrated curriculum - along with discrete subject teaching.

 

We have developed our integrated curriculum to reflect the needs of St Laurence, and to further our understanding of the world in which we live. The topics in each year group have either a geographical or historical focus, with at least one extended topic in each year group. To ensure the children are fully engaged in the work to come, the unit begins with an inspiration day. This day includes exciting, fun activities to enthuse the children!

 

As children learn in many different ways, the units provide a wide range of experiences, delivered in a variety of teaching styles, to give your child the best opportunity to learn. Our pupils experience whole class teaching, along with differentiated individual, paired and group work, which promotes a deeper understanding. There are opportunities for experimenting and investigating, exploring and problem solving, as well as researching and applying knowledge and skills that have been learnt.

 

Over the four years at St Laurence, our integrated curriculum provides a broad and balanced coverage for our pupils, ensuring that the subjects and objectives in the National Curriculum are covered.

 

The children experience creative activities in art and craft, drama, music and dance. They experiment with a wide range of media, and its application, to develop their capacity for innovative thought. We aim to make our humanities work relevant. History encourages the use of first hand evidence from artefacts and documents, where possible.

 

We promote an awareness of past events and help pupils to understand how we can be influenced by and learn from the past. Our geography helps children to understand the world in which they live, encouraging investigation and exploration: locally, nationally and globally. We aim to establish a sense of responsibility for actions on the environment and the world. Opportunities to explore personal, social and health education and citizenship are also linked closely to our humanities work.

 

Design and technology aspects provide opportunities for our children to engage in imaginative and creative work, including the ability to: investigate, design, plan, construct and evaluate. The children can learn by their mistakes, as well as their successes and this helps them to learn how to tackle new problems and tasks with confidence.

 

Throughout the school, the integrated curriculum is supported by a range of trips and visitors to school, to help inspire and enthuse your child in their learning. In lessons, your child will be given clear expectations of what they will learn, guided by an integrated curriculum which aims to be inclusive, engaging, relevant, creative and progressive.