At Loxwood Primary School, children and families are at the heart of all we do. We use the National Curriculum as the basis of what we teach, but we understand that education goes beyond this. Our curriculum takes into account the diverse needs of our community and the world, meeting the needs of all our children. Our core values (Resilience, Collaboration, Curiosity, Creativity and Kindness) ensure that our children develop as life-long learners and responsible citizens.
In order to make learning meaningful, and to provide awe and wonder, we use real-life and first hand experiences wherever possible so that children can make meaningful connections. We have a coherent and sequenced curriculum, building upon knowledge and skills year on year. Early Years have a yearly topic cycle while Year 1 through to Year 6 have a biannual topic cycle in in their key stage phases.
Our school is set within the most beautiful and expansive grounds which allows us to learn in the outdoor environment with particular focus on Sports and Woodland Learning. In order to develop our children’s ‘Cultural Capital’, we make purposeful visits and have visitors in school (such as theatre groups, circus skills and first aid) to enhance the children’s learning. We provide experiences of a range of professions to ensure our children are ambitious for their own futures. Diversity is embedded through our whole curriculum to provide meaningful examples of the uniqueness of our world. Working collaboratively, we are building links with schools within different locations that provide a contrast to the life experiences the children have here at Loxwood. We value the opinion of all our stakeholders and ensure we are meeting their needs through seeking regular feedback.
We have a coherent and sequenced curriculum, building upon knowledge and skills year on year. EYFS have their own topic cycle but work alongside Key Stage 1. The rest of the school work in pairs – Year 1 and Year 2, Year 3 and Year 4 and then Year 5 and Year 6 and follow a two year topic cycle. These year groups plan together weekly.
Our topics are based around three themes – Discover, Explore and Create. Each term takes one of these themes as shown below in the Topic grid. Discover is History based, Explore is Geography based and Create looks at Art and Design and Technology.
Teachers are responsible for planning, using our curriculum maps, for the teaching and learning that takes place. Quality first teaching is key, enabling all children to access the curriculum. Teachers create a purposeful learning environment which provides resources that enables all children to learn. They understand what has been taught in the previous year group and where the children need to get to by the end of the year. Teachers draw on opportunities within our local environment and community to enhance what is taught and make meaningful connections. They use working walls to support current learning, teach key vocabulary and represent the steps in learning. They make adaptions to planning and resources to enable all children to learn successfully. They use the expertise of their colleagues and other professionals to ensure that the learning matches the needs of the children.
We assess children as part of our ongoing teaching and learning. Class teachers assess the progress of children within and across lessons using our curriculum step planning to make judgements. This enables teachers to effectively judge whether children are on track to reach age related expectations (ARE’s) and adapt their planning and provision accordingly to ensure all children make progress. Most assessments are based on ongoing summative judgements following lessons. We use Target Tracker as a system for recording ongoing progress using the steps and statements for all core areas (Speaking & Listening, Reading, Writing, Maths and Science).
However, we also use formative methods to support our assessments. For Phonics and Early reading, children are assessed every six weeks to see how much progress they have made and are grouped according to this. In writing, we have an independent write every half term which enables teachers to assess how well the children are using their knowledge and skills away from the point of teaching and inform next steps in learning. In Key Stage 2, we use NFER tests in Maths, Reading Comprehension, Grammar and Spelling every term to support our ongoing judgements. All of these feed into our termly pupil progress meetings with senior leaders and then into our class action plans for the lowest 20% and disadvantaged children.
We regularly moderate in Reading, Writing, Maths, Science and EYFS to ensure accurate assessments both internally and benchmarking this against other schools both locally and across West Sussex. Subject leaders work with teachers to evaluate progress within their subjects and use this information to evaluate any necessary actions that are needed to develop the quality of provision.