At Hillyfield Primary Academy, we take pride in our Creative Curriculum. Our curriculum is run through a series of engaging topics based around a carefully chosen children’s book through the ‘Power of Reading’ scheme. Each topic takes on a cross-curricular approach, including writing, to ensure that a variety of learning experiences take place.
Our curriculum is underpinned by the aim to develop passionate, inquisitive and engaged learners. It is this vision that aids us in developing a love of learning in our pupils.
At Hillyfield Academy, we believe that a successful curriculum must be built upon high-quality teaching, and inspirational learning opportunities. The topics that the children engage in each half term are mapped closely to the requirements of the national curriculum, thus ensuring that all pupils develop the necessary skills for their age range. Whilst ensuring these objectives are met, the cross-curricular topics allow learners and teachers opportunity for flexibility and creativity. Using a high-quality children’s book to base the topics upon means that pupils are fully immersed in their learning.
Across the school, exciting, engaging and meaningful cross-curricular links are developed between the different subject areas, whilst also developing and embedding the essential skills required of every child in every year group.
We base our curriculum on four stages of learning. Each topic follows the journey of:
ENGAGE DEVELOP INNOVATE EXPRESS
In the early stages of the topic, teachers are dedicated to engaging learners in their new learning experience. The required National Curriculum skills are then ‘developed’ for the individual pupils. In the latter end of the process, learners are given the opportunity to innovate and finally express their learning in a real and meaningful way.
Across the school we ensure that there is both a vigorous and supportive approach to the planning of the Creative Curriculum. Each year group is provided with the National Curriculum objectives aligned with the ‘Power of Reading’ book. These objectives are then arranged by teachers in a medium term plan for the topic. This is planned through the engage, develop, innovate and express process. Where any national curriculum objectives may not have been met, this is recorded and moved into another suitable topic. Our planning process ensures that the necessary skills are developed whilst allowing for flexibility and enjoyment.
Our Creative Curriculum is delivered in a cross-curricular way through Geography, History, Science, Design Technology and Art. Writing genres are also inspired by current topics to ensure that learners are fully immersed. Creative Curriculum sessions typically take place during afternoon slots and through daily Literacy sessions.
All of the pupils learning that is based around the ‘Power of Reading’ book is recorded in the writing book. This ensures that the standard of the pupils writing remains high regardless of the subject area and that the links between the subjects are even more explicit for the children.
Religious Education, Philosophy for Children and Modern Foreign Languages are delivered by class teachers on a weekly basis. This learning is recorded in the class ‘Learning Journals’.
ICT, Music, PE and Art are delivered by specialist teachers across the school.
Parents and the School Community
Our curriculum is made available on our school website. This ensures that parents are able to access the National Curriculum objectives and topic overviews for each half term. A home learning document is also given to children on a half termly basis that gives an outline of the learning that is taking place. On a daily basis our teachers, Year Group Leaders and Assistant Headteachers are available in the school playground for parents to speak to. Each of these members of staff are able to answer any questions parents have about our school curriculum.
Power of Reading Topic:
This half term in Year One we are very excited that our ‘Power of Reading’ text is Lila and the secret of the rain. The story is a traditional African tale and will follow on from the work we did at the end of term during black history month. If you know a traditional African tale that you would like to share with the children please speak to a member of the Year One team. We will explore the story in many ways including drama and story mapping. The children will be able to confidently retell the story and discuss the main character. Whilst we are looking at the book we will explore different kinds of weather. We plan to visit Lloyds park and study the subject of weather in a very fun and active way (look out for more info on this trip soon!
This half term in Year One we will be holding daily phonics sessions where the children will be working in their current phase focusing on a different sound or tricky word each day. If you would like to know more about phonics or you are unsure of the phase that your child is working in please speak to your class teacher. We will be continuing to practice the correct spelling of the Year One high frequency words. Handwriting will also stay a big focus, we will work to ensure each letter is being formed correctly. Our writing genres this half term are weather poems, Recount and story descriptions. Don’t forget to ask your child what their writing target is
In Numeracy, we will continue to work on developing confidence with recognising, reading and writing numbers up to 100. This is a great activity to practice at home! We will revise the work that we have done on addition and number bonds at the end of last term. We will then start to look at subtraction. Initially the children will explore these concepts through the use of concrete manipulatives such as counters and cubes. Then the children will develop the pictoral method and eventually move onto more abstract thinking and problem solving. Please see our calculation policy to find out more. In the final few weeks of term the children will begin to explore measurement. This will be highly interactive and will involve plenty of outdoor learning as the children put their new knowledge to work measuring different things in the playground.
Power of Reading Topic:
This half term in Year 2 we are very excited that our ‘Power of Reading’ text is Zeraffa Giraffa. This is a fantastic story which shows the beautiful journey made by a giraffe and its keeper. We know that the children are going to love it! Our topic will be linked to the story and we will be answering the question ‘Who is Louise Marie Therese?’ looking at the life of this interesting historical figure and how to find information from the past. We will also be comparing life in England and other countries and using maps and atlases to improve our understanding of the world.
This half term our writing genres are descriptive narrative, and recounts. We will be retelling stories from other cultures and times which will help us to develop our descriptive vocabulary and our use of openers eg later that day, early one morning. We will also be learning how to write a recount, putting events that have happened in to order and learning how to use the past tense.
In Numeracy, we will begin the half term by finishing our work on subtraction, using different resources such as number lines, counters and tens frames to help us understand how to subtract one and two digit numbers. We will then be looking at measurement, understanding how to use a ruler to measure length and how to order objects by length. We will also be looking at how to weigh objects using and ordering them by their weight. We will also look at some basic work on statistics, how to make a bar graph and how to answer questions by looking at results.