We are on a journey to develop a curriculum that meets the needs of our children and best prepares them for the world after Primary School. These changes have arisen after a years’ worth of research into the best practice from around the country and from current research into cognitive and emotional development in children.
We have just completed phase 1 of the Curriculum re-design and as a result from Sept 2020 we have an offer for children and families that we are really proud of!
So what does this look like?
School should help children to become informed and skilful citizens of the world they live in! That is the underlying principle that shapes everything we do here at FHC.
A child needs to develop a strong sense of self and a confidence in their ideas and thoughts that is not threatened by those around them with differing ideas. They need to feel proud of their difference and able to celebrate it whilst also celebrating the merits of those around them. Emotional intelligence and Empathy are key life skills that children need to be active and successful citizens in the world they live in and these skills cannot be fully developed without direct teaching and opportunity to discuss and debate ideas linked to the world around them.
It is important that children become proficient in Reading, Writing and Maths as they allow them to access a world of information. But it is equally essential for children to develop a social self, a creative self, an enquiring self. Our new Curriculum prioritises these skills equally with Maths and Literacy.
We ensure that the teaching personal, social & emotional development is at the centre of every day, with 3 daily crew sessions. These sessions are split into 3 categories: Development of Self, Development of Social skills and community & development of reflective skills. All sessions are speaking and listening based and give children daily chance to develop their confidence in public speaking and in sharing their ideas with others.
We have introduced Thrive as a main vehicle for our work with children. We want children to flourish and be supported with the Social and Emotional development. Children with a confident sense of self and the skills to regulate their emotions are able to enjoy friendships, relate well to others, and be ready and able to learn. Thrive is a specific way of working with children, that targets children individuals areas for development eg: empathy, sense of self, self-esteem. In the same way as we support children to meet their individual potential in Maths and Literacy, Thrive supports children to develop a strong and confident sense of self. Positive relationships are at the heart of Thrive teaching and we use these relationships together with play and creativity activities which provide children with key developmental experience to help support their personal growth.
We want children to develop a personal affinity with Music. To be able to say what they like and don’t like confidently and without fear of judgement. To be able to use music as a form of expression about their mood and feelings. We know that developing a kind and nurturing inner landscape is essential to developing emotionally healthy people and music for many people is a way of supporting and regulating the way they feel. As it is now most common for people to listen to music on personal devices, children are not always exposed to a wide and varied range of music and so are limited in developing a wide and eclectic personal music library. These sessions form part of the daily crew sessions.
Our upper KS2 children have a weekly life skills session. These are spilt into 3 broad termly themes: Social action & public speaking, Life skills & Money management. Through these sessions we support children to be confident in approaching life after primary school.
Finally we have our Creative Curriculum. Our vehicle to allow children to build their belief in their own creativity, to see the value in others creativity and to work with others and independently to make and review things with their hands. Our aim is to ensure that children are never afraid to try and be creative, that they understand creativity is more than line drawing and 2D form. That they will be confident to value their creative output as they move through life and perhaps pick up a skill and a passion for some form of creative craft. We know the value of craft as a mechanism for developing a calm and mindful life and we hope to develop that in our children during their time with us.
Our final Curriculum element is PE. Healthy body, Healthy mind! Our children love Sports and thrive on the opportunity for competition. We know that children learn so much from being part of a team. The resilience needed when things are tough, the emotional balance needed to win and lose gracefully, the comradery of working with others for a shared goal and the pride in representing our school. It is a vital part of the school experience. Whether children are passionate sportsmen or simply happy to give it a go, everyone is welcome!