Find out, in detail, about our Foundation subject curriculum on this page…
Below is a brief overview of each subject with links to our curriculum documents. Each subject curriculum has been developed to ensure that learning is carefully sequenced and builds upon what the children have learned in the past (and prepares them for future learning). In the process of constructing our school curriculum, we used the National Curriculum as the base and added to it so that our children can enjoy an enhanced educational experience that ensures learning (an alteration in long-term memory) . Please note that Cross curricular links are made for all of our termly-topic areas to ensure even greater depth of learning and understanding.
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We give our children the opportunity to explore a range of materials, tools and techniques so that they may learn to express themselves creatively and with increasing confidence through art. In the Early Years Foundation Stage, children’s painting and drawing supports theit language development and to express their understanding of the world. Artwork at this stage also helps to develop fine and gross motor skills whilst also facilitating expression and creative thought. In Key Stage 1 and 2, art often has strong cross curricular links that help to deepen knowledge and understanding of essential knowledge. our curriculum is carefully sequenced in order to ensure that children are consistenly developing their skills in building upon prior learning.
Our D&T Curriculum encourages our children to learn to think creatively in order to solve problems. We encourage the children to work individually and to collaborate to design, make, and evaluate high-quality finished products. D&T units of work usually align with other subjects like maths, science, engineering, computing or art – this helps to give greater purpose and context to each project. Children are encouraged to evaluate the effectiveness of their finished work and consider how they might adapt their work if they were to do it again. Through a variety of creative and practical activities, we teach the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to engage in an iterative process of designing and making. Our sequenced curriculum is designed to allow children to build upon and use their prior knowledge in order to progress across year groups.
We follow Islington’s excellent and recently updated Computing Scheme of Work that has encorporated the effective legacy of remote learning, links to latest resources from NCCE, Barefoot Computing and LGFL. The curriculum focuses on Digital Literacy, Information Technology, and Computer Science. Each unit of work is 6 weeks long and begins with a lesson on Digital Citizenship that builds upon prior learning across these strands: Media Balance and Well-Being, Cyberbbullying, News and Media Literacy, Privacy and Security, Digital Footprint and Identity, Relationships and Communication. We have also developed a Digital Resilience Curriculum for our Upper Key Stage 2 children that we are continuing to develop for our Year 3 and 4 children. The aim is for them to develop a better understanding of the positive and negative effects of social media on wellbeing and develop skills to help them make wise decisions when confronted with dilemmas online.
The lessons cover: Social media – terms and conditions, Cyberbullying, Online friendships, Fakery, celebs and body image. Social media and self esteem, Online safety
Geography is an exciting and relevant subject and we want to inspire in our children a curiosity and fascination about the world and its people which will remain with them throughout their lives. We equip our children with knowledge about diverse places, people, resources and environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes.
Through their work in geography, children learn about their local area and compare their life in this area with that in other regions in the United Kingdom and in the rest of the world. They learn how to draw and interpret maps and they develop the skills of research, investigation, analysis and problem-solving. Through their growing knowledge and understanding of human geography, children gain an appreciation of life in other cultures where there are opportunities for developing respect and tolerance when embracing differences within the world we live. Geography teaching also motivates children to find out about the physical world and enables them to recognize the importance of sustainable development for the future of mankind.
We use a variety of teaching and learning styles in our geography lessons. We combine whole-class teaching methods with enquiry-based research learning opportunities. We encourage children to ask as well as answer geographical questions. We offer them the opportunity to use a variety of data, such as maps, statistics, graphs, pictures, and aerial photographs, and we enable them to use IT and where this serves to enhance their learning. Children take part in role-play and discussions, and they present reports to the rest of the class. Where possible, we involve the children in ‘real’ geographical opportunities, e.g. research of a local environmental problem or use of the Internet to investigate a current issue. When appropriate, meaningful links are made with other subject areas such as maths and science.
Our History Curriculum has been developed over many years to ensure that children gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. Children ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement. From the outset, children learn about changes over time and make links between the past and present. As children progress up the school, they begin to understand the legacy of older civilisations on modern life as well as developing their understanding of abstract concepts such as empire, invasion, religion and government and societal heirarchy. Children begin to understand the concept of time from Nursery and Reception class, move on to developing a timeline of their own lives in Year 1, before being introduced to Primary Sources when they study the Great Fire of London in Year 2. Children continnue to develop this understanding when they study the Iron Age in Year 3, where they will encounter artefacts as primary sources, before moving on to studying both Primary and Secondary sources. Children are taught to consider each source in its own context and that neither type of historical source is more reliable than the other. These skills are developed up to Year 6, when they study two speeches by (Winston Churchill and Adolf Hitler) that both procalim Dunkirk to be a success for opposing sides – our children analyse these speeches and the motivations behind them in order to deepen their understanding of propaganda and its use.
We have developed our own Outdoor learning curriculum to complement the newly-renovated Secret Garden area of the school grounds. We are keen to extend the opportunities our children in the Early Years Foundation Stage have to learn in the outdoors and through the outdoors to our Key Stage 1 and 2 children. Our Outdoor Learning Curriculum has three main strands: Health and Wellbeing, The Environment, and Physical Development. This curriculum will be first taught from September 2021.
Personal, Social, Health and Economic education (PSHE) is an important and necessary subject and is integral to the school. Through PSHE, children develop knowledge, skills and attributes they need to keep themselves healthy and safe, and prepare for life and work in modern Britain. We are guided by the Islington scheme –You, Me, PSHE and the statutory guidance for Relationships and Sex Education (RSE). The scheme provides a comprehensive and progressive curriculum with topics delivered in an age appropriate way. Class teachers also adapt plans to reflect particular needs of the children in their class. Much of the curriculum is delivered through discussions with the children agreeing to ground rules to ensure participation and sharing is conducted with sensitivity and respect. Lessons can begin with a range of prompts including, scenarios, books and film clips. Activities may include hot seating, role play and giving a presentation. The Curriculum map below details the curriculum for children in Key Stage 1 and 2. For details of the Personal, Social and Emotional aspect of the Early Years curriculum, please refer to Nursery and Reception class pages.
Yerbury follows the Islington Agreed syllabus for RE. Space is given to all major world faiths as well as non-religious and alternative worldviews. In a London borough such as Islington, with its huge diversity of faith, culture and ethnicity, such a wide-ranging and comprehensive syllabus is essential. It aims to give pupils the opportunity to explore big questions about life, to find out what people believe and what difference this makes to how they live, so that they can make sense of religion, reflecting on their own ideas and ways of living.’ During lessons pupils will gain knowledge and understanding of key religious concepts and their expression, as well as non-religious ethical worldviews. They will have the chance to express their developing ideas about the nature of the religions, beliefs or worldviews they encounter. Space is also made for evaluation and reflection as pupils engage with the ideas they have learned. Through this curriculum pupils will gain an increasingly sophisticated understanding of the basis and impact of the world’s major religions, beliefs and worldviews.
We aim to give all children a deep understanding of the world whilst also acquiring specific skills and knowledge. Our curriculum is designed to help children to think scientifically and to gain an understanding scientific processes. Our curriculum is sequenced to ensure that children are building upon prior learning, our curriculum strands run across year groups and key stages to ensure depth of knowledge and alteration to long term memory. Children use a range of skills in cluding, observation, planning and investigating, questioning, and hypothesising. Scientific vocabulary is taught within lessons and applied across lessons. Children undertake frequent practical sessions where possible and learn to plan, predict, undertake investigations, draw conclusions, and write up Science investigations through our school curriculum.
Children at Yerbury learn from the excellent Language Angels Spanish Curriculum Scheme of Work. Children are taught to develop an interest in languages. The curriculum is carefully sequenced to progressively develop children’s skills in Spanish through regular lessons. Children will develop the following Spanish skills: listening, speaking, reading, writing, grammar, and phonetics.
Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural education (SMSC ) underpins what we do at Yerbury. In addition to being taught discreetly, primarily through PSHE and RE, SMSC is embedded in our subject areas, and through enrichment activities such as visits and clubs and assemblies.
Through SMSC we contribute significantly towards achieving our “Hope for the Yerbury Child”, and prepare our children for the next stage in their lives, and for the future as decent, active citizens. We refer to British values to help children identify their future roles and responsibilities in modern day Britain.
‘It is the essential knowledge that pupils need to be educated citizens, introducing them to the best that has been thought and said and helping to engender an appreciation of human creativity and achievement.’” (National Curriculum).
The aim of cultural capital is to expose children to cultural experiences, background knowledge and opportunities which will broaden their horizons and understanding of the world. They learn to relate and communicate with others, engage in the culture they live in, and have the best possible chance to succeed and be happy in the modern world, not matter their starting points in life.
Children join Yerbury in Nursery and Reception with a range of experiences in their family life, learning and play. Some children will have different and sometimes more limited experiences than others. Cultural Capital in the early years means giving the children the knowledge and skills for what comes next in their lives. We want every child to have the best possible start to their education and staff plan a curriculum, across all 7 areas of learning, which reflects the needs and interests of our children and encourages them to see the “awe and wonder of the world”. Central to our provision is the development of language and communication. An environment which encourages talk, together with dedicated staff who support language development, is a vital foundation for our children.
With the older classes, as well as using our programme of whole school assemblies, each subject taught within the school day makes its own contribution to our children’s cultural capital. Reading is the driving force behind our curriculum and is promoted at every opportunity. We support our children in becoming confident and articulate in expressing their thoughts, beliefs and opinions by providing lots of opportunities to talk.
As part of our topics the children go on visits, for example to the fire station, a museum, gallery, place of historical interest or place of worship. More physical activities include visits to adventure playgrounds , outdoor learning centres and residential trips. We also have workshops in school such as Sir Teachalot for Castles in Year 1 and the Mayans in Year 6.
We have a strong tradition of music at Yerbury. Classes have music lessons, every child learns to play an instrument, and we are expanding our partnership with the Music Hub to give disadvantaged children the opportunity to access instrument lessons out of school. We have a band and choir who perform in school and at events, such as the Islington Pure Voices Festival in Year 5.
In addition to the numerous experiences and activities embedded in our wider curriculum we are also part of the Islington 11 by11 initiative which aims to give every child 11 cultural experiences by Year 11. These have already included trips to an orchestra, adventure playgrounds, puppet shows and art gallery workshops.
Experts external to the school also help educate our children though, for example, drug workshops, cycle training and internet safety. We also draw on the culture , knowledge and expertise of our parents, for example, to talk about their jobs or to explain how they celebrate a religious festival.
We take part in charity events such as Red Nose Day, Children in Need and Remembrance Day. Some children also initiate their own fundraising, often with yard sales. The staff have an annual cake sale for McMillan. Parents also organise donations for the local food bank.
The school also has a long-standing relationship with the local community centre where the children visit to sing carols at Christmas for the older people who attend the lunch club. Our Biography Day project in Year 6 gives the children the opportunity to interview someone from another generation and learn about their experiences and life stories.
At major events, such as general elections, our children debate and take part in a mock election. In recent months, the whole school community has been heavily involved in a vocal campaign to stop an Ocado depot being developed next to the school. This has given children exposure to how to the legal and planning system work, as well as the role of Local Councillors, and how to effect change in a democratic system.
Our children participate in school through responsibilities in class, our buddy system, Playground Friends/Lunchtime Helpers and the Environmental Council.
Yerbury has a range of enrichment activities at lunch and after school, including, chess, football and cookery. We take part in sporting activities such as the Islington Football Tournament, Cross Country and Swimming Gala.