The National Curriculum is taught as part of the broader school curriculum and consists of the Core Subjects, which are English, Mathematics, Science and Computing (ICT), and the Foundation Subjects, which are History, Geography, Art, Music, Physical Education (PE), Personal, Social, Health and Citizenship Education (PSHCE) and Design Technology. Religious Education (RE) is taught in accordance with the Hertfordshire Agreed Syllabus for RE. Subjects may be incorporated into cross-curricular themes when appropriate, or taught separately when applicable.
To explain the changes to the National Curriculum and the new assessment to parents a new guide for parents has been produced by Rising Stars. The guide provides a clear outline of the new content, by year group, with some background information about how the curriculum and assessment works.
When our youngest pupils join the school in the Early Years they will follow the Early Years Statutory Framework. There are two reception classes which are mixed ability and pupils will be exposed to opportunities which enable them to cover the full range of areas set out in the framework. Outdoor learning is a significant part of the Early Years’ experience for pupils.
PHONICS - we will use planning based on the Letters and Sounds scheme. We use Jolly Phonics songs and actions to reinforce learning.
Years 1 to 6 pupils are taught all National Curriculum Subjects plus Religious Education. From Year 3 pupils also learn French. We teach a broad and balanced curriculum, where children apply their knowledge, skills and understanding through meaningful cross curricular links between subjects. Our curriculum is creative and exciting where we foster a love of learning, encouraging pupils to aim high, have a ‘can do’ attitude and to take risks in their learning, without fearing failure.
In Key Stage 2 there is an emphasis on the key skills of Literacy and Numeracy, with reading, spelling and mental arithmetic receiving particular attention.
We aim to support all pupils, whatever their abilities, and so from time to time small groups or individualised sessions are arranged to further this aim.
We are aware that many of the life skills which make good learners, such as team work; the ability to reflect and evaluate; creativity; independent enquiry and the ability to manage one’s own workload and responsibilities, do not neatly fit into traditional subject areas. Because of this, we also arrange a number of cross-curricular theme days during the year to enable our pupils to challenge themselves and develop these skills in practice.
Sex and Relationships Education is taught mainly through PSHCE and Science in Key Stage 2: children are taught not only factual information about the biology involved but consideration is also given to the quality of relationships in family life, the exercise of personal responsibility and the values and standards of the society in which we live. You are given the opportunity to view and discuss the resources used in our programmes and are entitled to withdraw your child from these lessons should you so wish as long as they receive the minimum required by the National Curriculum.
What is Forest School?
Forest School promotes a community for learning. It offers children the opportunity to take supported risks appropriate to the environment and to themselves. Forest School aims to promote the holistic development of all those involved, fostering resilient, confident, independent and creative learners. Children participate in activities and games designed to build self-esteem, communication skills, independence and self-confidence through an appreciation of the natural environment.
A range of creative tasks are used, for example den building, investigating trees and plants and seasonal crafts using woodland tools and resources. Activities are planned to support and extend children’s social development, self-awareness and self-regulation. Children develop woodland skills and the ability to work as a team.
To encourage physical and emotional development through outdoor play, children have the opportunity to learn about the natural environment. They learn how to assess and handle risks and most importantly to use their own initiative to solve problems and co-operate with others.
Forest School is run by qualified Forest School practitioners who continuously maintain and develop their professional practice. Children regularly visit the woodland for a whole afternoon in their school family groups.
We have amazing grounds at Bridgewater Primary School. Forest School sessions take place in our own school woodland - working together in all weathers - rain or shine!
Play and exploration are powerful and effective mediums for children's learning. Sessions are child led, allowing the children to explore and co-construct their learning through, open ended tasks with a focus on the process and not the end product.
Today’s essential life and work skills include creative thinking, complex problem-solving and the ability to cope with choice, uncertainty and the unknown. Forest School is an innovative educational approach to outdoor play and learning. Taking part in activities in a woodland environment helps children to develop their personal, social and emotional skills. Research shows that benefits include improved concentration, improved social skills, empathy and social communication. Through play and open-ended learning, children learn about the natural environment, how to handle risks and build resilience. Forest School encourages children to use their initiative to solve problems and co-operate with others. Forest School is fun too!