The curriculum is the main vehicle through the school seeks to meet its responsibilities for building children’s knowledge and understanding of what they study alongside fostering positive attitudes towards learning.
Together with high quality instruction, the curriculum is the match that we hope will light many little fires, providing our children with memorable experiences and allowing them to grow their talents and uncover unknown passions.
At DWJS we aim to provide the children with a curriculum which:
- Sequentially builds knowledge and understanding in all subject areas so that all children are well prepared for the next steps in their education and their lives beyond school.
- Is broad and well-balanced, providing a rich tapestry of experiences and celebrating difference and diversity.
- Fosters a love of learning and supports the development of positive learning behaviours.
- Enables our children to grow into independent learners who embrace new opportunities.
In recent years, education research has highlighted the importance that curriculum design plays in securing the best outcomes for children. If a curriculum is both well-designed and well-delivered, ultimately children will know more and remember more; by definition, they will have learnt more. Although both design and delivery play a key role in children achieving to the best of their abilities, this process begins with curriculum design.
Here at DWJS, we have been working to improve our provision so that it represents best practice in curriculum design. This ongoing work is underpinned by the following design principles:
- Curriculum design is informed by a clear understanding of Cognitive Load Theory and its implication for learning in respect of how children learn.
- The curriculum is knowledge-based and seeks to impart knowledge in range of forms (i.e. factual, procedural, conceptual).
- The curriculum is deliberately structured to build knowledge sequentially both horizontally (i.e. across units of learning) and vertically (i.e. from one stage to the next) to ensure progression.
- An effective curriculum demonstrates coherence and is structured in a logical way that makes clear links and allows knowledge and understanding of key concepts to develop over time.
- A good primary school curriculum should provide both depth and breadth of experiences to support children’s academic, emotional, social, spiritual, moral, creative and physical growth.
Pedagogy: An Evidence-Informed Approach
At DWJS, we strive to maintain a high level of professional knowledge and understanding of current best practice in pedagogy and the implications for curriculum provision and design. This helps us to ensure that our provision in our classrooms is informed by a credible and proven evidence base drawn from the latest education-based research findings. In particular, the school’s practice in pedagogy is informed by the work being undertaken by the Education Endowment Foundation and The Research Schools Network.