We are constantly responding to the changes in the National Curriculum by keeping up to date with new legislation and adapting our teaching methods. We have devised a two-year cycle to ensure children cover the statutory programmes of study in all curriculum areas. We review our planning and all our school curriculum policy documents on a three-year rolling programme in line with our School Development Plan.
Teachers continually assess each child’s work through observation, tests and records. All reception children are assessed during their first year using the foundation stage profile. At the end of Year 2 and Year 6, as required by the Department for Education, we formally assess children in areas of the National Curriculum. See enclosed SAT Results for Icklesham School also the National Average. Your child’s annual report will show their individual results. Years 3,4 and 5 are assessed annually using relevant materials. We involve children in their learning by setting and reviewing agreed targets in Literacy and Numeracy. Sometimes we will set other curriculum targets.
We teach the separate elements of the curriculum both through class topics and individual subjects. We follow the QCA Schemes of Work for most subjects. The main emphasis is the Teaching and Learning of Numeracy and Literacy, where our priority is to develop a child’s basic skills. We have been awarded the “Quality Mark” for the third time by the Basic Skills Agency in recognition of the standards that our pupils are achieving in Literacy and Numeracy. The National Curriculum consists of:-
Core subjects English, Maths, Science and ICT
Foundation subjects History, Art, Music, Geography, Physical Education,
Design Technology, RE
We also follow a programme for PSHE (Personal, Social and Health Education including Citizenship) and have achieved the Silver Healthy School Award.
We believe in the importance of delivering a “broad and balanced” curriculum. The “Arts” curriculum
(i.e. music, art, dance, drama) is given a high profile as we value the contribution this makes to the development of the “whole” person. We have achieved Artsmark Gold for the second time in July 2006 (awarded by the Arts Council for England). Cross- curricular links, using ICT where appropriate, are actively encouraged. Similarly our PE provision is also valued and we are proud of our resources. All pupils are taught French. Pupils identified with a Special Educational Need are supported in order that they may access the curriculum. We identify our Gifted and Talented pupils and ensure that activities are appropriate. We provide a wide variety of extra-curricular and extension opportunities for our pupils, for example Latin for Year 5 and 6 pupils. Our After-School clubs change each term. The Office for Standards in Education (OFSTED) inspected the school in May 2002 and gave a good report, which acknowledged the many strengths of the school. A copy of the summary report is enclosed.
LANGUAGE & LITERACY
We give a high priority to the development of Language and Literacy skills because we believe they are central to all learning. We have a structured reading development programme from the Early Years to Year 6. We aim to produce independent, confident readers who have a love and appreciation of real books. We firmly believe that in this way books become both a source of enjoyment and information.
(See our Reading Programme Booklet).
We believe that listening, verbal, and writing skills are equally important. We actively encourage children to talk, listen, and write from the start of their time with us. Children participate in whole-class and group drama activities. We place appropriate emphasis on spelling, punctuation, grammar and handwriting throughout the drafting process. We continually reinforce quality in careful drafting and final presentation. We teach a cursive handwriting style from early years. The Primary National Strategy – a framework for literacy, has been implemented throughout both key stages. We have a well-stocked library which all children use.
Our main aim is to give all children, whatever their level of mathematical development, an enthusiasm for the subject based on confidence in their own ability to solve problems and to handle and communicate mathematical ideas.
To this end, we encourage children to work both co-operatively and individually. The emphasis throughout the school is on numeracy skills and mental maths. The Primary National Strategy – a framework for mathematics has been implemented throughout the school.
We use a topic or project-based approach to science closely related to other areas of the curriculum. However, we do teach some science as a separate subject. Teachers follow guidelines set down in the National Curriculum document, ensuring continuity and progression for all pupils and a balance of knowledge. Much of the work is practical, providing opportunities for children to develop their skills of observation and enquiry.
We have a conservation wildlife area in our school grounds. Our Millennium Pond Project won the Sussex Primary Schools Environmental Competition 1999 – The Kennard Award. We have achieved “Healthy Schools” status and “ECO” silver status and are now working towards achieving the Gold Award (i.e. being aware of environmental and conservation issues).
History and Geography topics are carefully planned by teachers in order for children to gain the knowledge, skills and understanding required by the National Curriculum. Many of our educational visits have a geographical or historical focus.
ART and DESIGN
Art plays an important part in the Primary School Curriculum. Throughout the school we provide a stimulating environment in which the children are surrounded by excellent examples of work. We give children ample opportunity to develop all their artistic skills in a wide variety of curriculum areas, using a diversity of media. We provide opportunities where artists visit the school and pupils visit art galleries/museums. We often hold an entire week themed around the Arts
The children have opportunities to listen to and enjoy a wide range of music from across the world. They take part in group singing and will have the experience of playing both tuned and un-tuned percussion. All children have opportunities to perform to members of the community. At the present time The East Sussex Music School provide violin, clarinet and keyboard lessons. These are fee paying.
All children from Year 3 onwards have the opportunity to learn the recorder. We sing to local senior citizens at Christmas time. We offer a wide variety of musical experiences throughout the year e.g. professional musicians coming into school, pupil involvement in musical productions and themed weeks.
We aim to ensure that children develop a range of sport skills and take part in a number of sporting activities. The school is well equipped with fixed and portable apparatus to allow a full programme of gymnastics and dance. There are also opportunities for team games, such as Football, Netball, Cricket, Tag Rugby, Stoolball and Rounders. We also run these as extra-curricular clubs. Athletics is a summer event and the school organises an annual sports day. Opportunities exist for older pupils to participate in local sporting events. We have our own heated, outdoor swimming pool. All children have the opportunity to gain confidence in the water and become competent swimmers. We aim to swim whenever possible throughout the summer term.
INFORMATION COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY (ICT)
Children are taught word-processing, data-handling, control technology and the use of CD Roms. ICT is used across the curriculum. All classrooms have Interactive Whiteboards and computers which access the Internet. The children send and receive e-mails and use the Internet for research. All classes have a digital camera and access to a scanner. Our School e-mail address is email@example.com
Our website is www.ickleshamcp.e-sussex.sch.uk We also have a small computer suite in the central area of the school.
All children follow a structured developmental design and technology programme where they have the opportunity to plan, design and make models. We emphasise the correct and safe use of tools and equipment.
All children in school learn French. Children in Years 5 and 6 follow a more structured programme to prepare them for secondary school. This is currently funded as an additional subject through the school budget.
RELIGIOUS EDUCATION AND COLLECTIVE WORSHIP
We are a Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School which means that, while the Local Education Authority resources our needs, a special relationship with the Church is maintained.
We use the DfES and East Sussex Authority’s agreed Syllabus. It is Christian and non-denominational, but recognises other spiritual beliefs. We have a close liaison with the church and visit on a regular basis. The Vicar visits the school regularly and takes a weekly assembly. Children take part in daily collective worship either whole-school, class or Key Stage 1 & 2 assemblies, based mainly on caring Christian themes. We welcome parents to join us for our weekly “Sharing Assemblies”. Parents can withdraw children from collective worship and the Religious Education Curriculum on religious grounds, after discussion with the Headteacher, when appropriate supervised activities will be provided.
PERSONAL, SOCIAL AND HEALTH EDUCATION AND CITIZENSHIP
This is an integral part of the curriculum. We aim to:
· Develop self-esteem.
· Develop a sensitivity and tolerance towards others.
· Develop an understanding of personal safety.
· Develop community links with the Police, Fire Service, Road Safety Officer and various charities.
· Deliver Health education through science and related topic work.
· Include a sex education programme for the Juniors. A parent meeting is offered prior to formal sex education lessons. Although parents have the right to withdraw their child from sex education, we would request that parents meet with the Headteacher to discuss this. (There is no formal sex education in the Infants but Staff will answer children’s questions honestly and with sensitivity). Parents can obtain a copy of our sex education policy from the school office.
During their time at Icklesham School, pupils have the opportunity to represent their class at a termly School Council meeting. Issues are discussed and whenever possible the pupils’ ideas are implemented.