Growing and learning together with God
At Fritwell School we follow the National Curriculum and wherever possible make links between subjects. There are 3 main topics throughout the school year in each year group. The coverage of the curriculum is planned out over the year to ensure breadth, balance and coverage. Opportunities are given for children to develop their independence and to develop a depth of understanding across all subjects.
Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)
The Foundation Stage follows the Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. This is based on the principles that children are unique and need unique learning experiences matched to their learning and developmental needs. There is a strong emphasis on learning through play, both child initiated and planned by the class teacher. The curriculum is delivered through a combination of whole class activities, adult led focused activities and child initiated activities.
During the Foundation Stage children work towards Early Learning Goals in the different areas of learning and development. These consist of three prime areas that cover the knowledge and skills expected by the end of the EYFS. These are: communication and language; physical development; and personal, social and emotional development. These are applied and reinforced by the specific areas which are: literacy; mathematics; understanding the world; and expressive arts and design. For each goal, teachers determine whether children are meeting expected levels, are exceeding them, or are below the expected level (‘emerging’) and these outcomes are made available to parents in their child's school report at the end of the year.
Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2
RE is embedded throughout school life with Collective Worship taking place daily. Children Religious Education (RE) once a week as well as exploring religious themes through worship. Teachers follow the Oxfordshire Agreed Syllabus for RE. The main focus of teaching is based on Christianity; however, in addition to this the children study elements of Islam, Judaism Sikhism and Hinduism. Other religions, including Buddhism may be taught where appropriate. Children are taught using a variety of resources and experiences and each term is centred on a ‘Big Question’. This question is then explored through personal reflection, research and finding out about religion and finally evaluated using critical thinking. Children are encouraged to become philosophical thinkers, reflecting upon religion and what it means to the world around us and to them as individuals.
All children are taught English daily which includes opportunities for reading, writing composition, phonics and spelling. Grammar and punctuation is also taught across all of these strands. The children are taught phonics and spelling using the recommended synthetic phonics approach through the Letters and Sounds guidelines. They are taught to read using complementary books which support a wide range of reading strategies. Books used include books from different published reading schemes, including Oxford Reading Tree, alongside other materials. Books are banded into colours and children progress through the bands. We lead a text-led approach to the teaching of English and creative opportunities to write and develop language are also included throughout all areas of the curriculum. Children also enjoy opportunities to be involved in drama activities within class and in school productions.
All children are taught Maths daily which includes opportunities for developing their Maths knowledge and understanding how Maths is used in everyday life. The school use a published maths scheme (Abacus) to support a consistent approach to the teaching of maths across the school. The children are taught about numbers and the number system and use this knowledge to a variety of develop calculation strategies. They learn about shape, space and measures and how to collect and interpret mathematical data. We aim to ensure that all maths teaching is active using a wide range of resources and relating their learning to real life situations. Creative opportunities to use maths are also included within other areas of the curriculum such as Science and Design and Technology.
Science is an important area of the curriculum and lessons provide opportunities to carry out scientific enquiries, and use the relevant scientific vocabulary that is taught. Science is taught in Foundation Stage as part of the Knowledge and Understanding of the World area of learning. The curriculum is mapped out carefully across the school and coverage of science topics follows the year groups suggestions in the National Curriculum.
Computing and ICT is taught both discretely and across the currciulum. Children learn and practise skills which can be used to share information, control and programme things. They are also involved in creative projects such as film-making. Children use laptops and iPads within class to support and extend learning in many different curriculum areas. They are taught how to stay safe when using the internet and e-safety is taught throughout the school and is embedded into all teaching.
Children take part in two hours of Physical Education each week. The teaching follows a skills-based approach, working to ensure all pupils develop fundamental movement skills such as agility, balance and coordination. These skills are then applied to a variety of activities, games and competitive sports. KS2 children have swimming lessons at Bicester Leisure Centre for at least one term per year. All children have the opportunity to go on a residential trip when they are in Year 6. The children are all children given the opportunity take part in a wide range of tournaments and sports festivals between year groups and with other schools with our school sport partnership (NOSSP - North Oxfordshire School Sport Partnership). A competitive sports day is held annually. For more information about our use of the national Sport Premium funding please click here.
Pupils are taught skills in composing, performing, listening to and appraising music. Pupils use a range of real and digital instruments (via ICT) to compose and perform. There are opportunities to learn brass, woodwind, drums, voice, piano and guitar which are provided by visiting professional music teachers. We have a strong culture of singing in worship, which is reinforced through our school choir which rehearses at various times throughout the year. All children participate in performances with an emphasis on music and singing, and concerts are held to share our pupils’ musical talents. All Year 5 children learn to play a brass instrument which is funded by the school and uses school instruments.
Children are taught about history through a range of sources and where possible they are given first-hand exposure to real artefacts. When available and appropriate, children are taken on visits to important sites or museums. Lessons normally cover significant events and famous people from the past, and children are encouraged to make comparisons between times in history. The areas of the History National Curriculum are mapped out carefully to ensure coverage of all of the required elements.
Depth of learning of geography skills and knowledge are taught creatively, linking to other curriculum areas as much as possible. Children are taught to develop geographical and fieldwork skills, such as reading maps and globes, and using compasses and digital technologies, in order to investigate places and patterns. They are encouraged to learn about the different regions in the UK, and make comparisons to geographically different locations around the world. They start to learn more about the environment, and how humans can affect it.
Art and Design
We aim to increase children's confidence and competence when using a variety of media and techniques in art. Art lessons are often linked to the classes’ topic at that time, enabling a creative approach. An awareness of colour, shape, balance, focus and proportion is developed alongside the use of symbols to convey ideas and feelings. The study of a wide range of artists and designers complements this work.
Design and Technology
Our Design and Technology curriculum aims to help children develop their designing and making skills. Children are taught construction skills using a variety of materials (e.g. pottery, wood, and fabric) as well as learning how to safely use different tools. Children are also taught about food and nutrition and have opportunities to learn to cook.
French is taught throughout the school following a scheme of work which sets out the key vocabulary and phrases to be learnt each term. The language is taught through songs, games and picture books. The main focus is on developing confidence in language learning through the acquisition of listening and speaking skills, although reading and writing is encouraged at Key Stage 2.
PSHE stands for Physical, Social and Health Education. Although it is a non-statutory subject, at Fritwell Church of England School we recognise the important role that the subject has in developing and nurturing our children. The subject aims to equip young people with the knowledge, understanding, attitudes and practical skills to live healthily, safely, productively and responsibly. PSHE is taught with a focus on the 3 core values of Healthy Living, Relationships and Economic Well-being and is mainly taught through circle-time and discussion work.