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Edinburgh Primary School

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Curriculum

  • Each of our reception, year 1 and year 2 classes have an allocated teaching assistant.  This supports our young learners at a crucial time in their development. 
  • We have designed a creative curriculum where our topics are carefully planned to engage our pupils and provide meaningful connections.
Reception (EYFS)

Children in Reception follow the Foundation Stage Curriculum. 

The curriculum is organised into different areas of learning.

Prime Areas:

Personal, Social and Emotional Development

Physical Development

Communication and Language

Specific Areas:

Literacy

Mathematics

Understanding of the World

Expressive Arts and Design

Key Stage 1 & 2

Literacy

LITERACY

All units of work are ‘text based’ and correspond to the reading lessons which are based on the same text.  At the beginning of a unit of work (units last 3 weeks), the genre type will be introduced and the features unpicked.  Children will always be presented with an exemplar text that they will themselves aim to produce.

 

In English lessons, we make good use of speaking and listening, including-partner talk, drama and oral rehearsal.  The sequence of teaching follows the pattern of teaching key learning objectives that will enable pupils to achieve their end of unit piece of writing.  A learning objective is shared at the start of every lesson and the corresponding task enables pupils to practise the learning that day. 

 

Guided writing sessions take place daily, where the teacher has time to enhance pupil understanding or to extend pupils’ understanding. In every lesson, we ensure we include modelled and shared writing.  In modelled writing, the teacher leads as the expert, showing children how to create impact on the reader through the construction of sentence and word choice.  This moves into shared writing, where the teacher asks the children to provide ideas and then uses these.  We make good use of the standing easel with large paper so that pupils can see the writing process fully and so that it will aid metacognition-the process from thought to verbalisation to writing, re-reading and re-fining.

 

Reading 

READING

Teaching of reading in EYFS and KS1

All children in Reception and KS1 are taught phonic skills using the synthetic approach – this means teaching the sounds that letters make.  Children learn that there are phonemes (sounds letters make) and graphemes (the corresponding written letters that make a sound).  Each day, children take part in a phonic lesson which is pitched at their phonic level.  We consistently use Read Write Inc resources which engage our pupils from EYFS to Y2.  

 

All classes display a large speed sound chart that is used daily as these are the sounds we want children to read them effortlessly.  We also use the corresponding A4 speed sound cards that display each sound with a key image.  

 

In addition to speed sounds, we use red and green word cards as a visual aid to teaching red and green words.  Red words are tricky words that cannot be fully blended (sounded out to make a word) but red words are key words that are needed to read e.g. said. 

 

Green words are common words that can be blended using Fred talk. Each class has a soft toy frog called Fred.  Fred is used to help children read as Fred can only read pure phonic sounds e.g. Fred would say d-o-g.  Children then learn to blend the sounds together to say the word dog. 

 

Equally, when children write the graphemes to spell words, they use their 'Fred fingers' to identify the sounds and then the corresponding graphemes to spell the word.  Fred fingers involves holding up one finger for each phoneme within the word.  

 

We also have the specific sound reading books that are sent home each week and correspond to the sound being taught that week and enables children to practise their new learning.  We assess progress each half term and ensure pupils are grouped appropriately.  

 

In addition to a daily phonics lesson, our children in KS1 also receive a literacy lesson each day for 1 hour.  They also take part in guided reading lessons each day for 25 minutes.  As recommended by the Rose Review, we believe that children need to learn to read words and once this is progressing well, the shift focuses onto the comprehension of words.  When we teach guided reading, each child gets to read the shared text to their teacher, while the rest of the group reads to themselves. The teacher listens in to all readers within the group and then as a group, key questions are discussed.  While this takes place, other children are completing reading related tasks such as responding to questions, phonic activities, reading for pleasure in the book corner etc. 

 

Teaching of reading in KS2

As mentioned above, in year 3-6, we carefully dove-tail our literacy and reading lessons by all English teaching and learning being based on a single ‘core text’.  This is a particularly effective way of working as the reading of the text inspires children and in a way prepares them for their literacy lessons.  There are specific comprehension skills (Learning objectives) that are taught explicitly to enable our children to become proficient in their understanding of text. 

 

Each week, our reading lessons focus on a single objective and follow the principle of read the text, teach the learning objective, children to complete the task focussing on their whole class text.

 

Home Reading

All children have a login for MYON which is an extensive library of online texts.  All children also have a login for accelerated reader. This is a programme that motivates pupils through providing assessments for books they have read, in the form of quizzes. Teachers are provided with much diagnostic information and this informs teaching.

 

We also provide all children with a physical reading book that is levelled in line with the accelerated reading levels (EYFS and KS1 still use book bands-in year 2, children being to move to accelerated reader).  All children are expected to read at home each evening, preferably with an adult.  Each child has a yellow reading log that we encourage all parents to write in each time they hear their child read. 

 

We have a key stage two library to encourage our older children to develop a love of reading that we hope will continue into adulthood. 

 

Mathematics

MATHS

Across the school, mathematics lessons take place in the morning for an hour each day. 

 

Lessons begin with an oral starter.  This is an important part of the lesson and creates an energetic, whole class start to enthuse children.  The starter is followed by the main lesson which involves sharing a learning objective and pupils engaging in a class led session.  During this time, assessment for learning strategies are key and we utilise the use of mini-whiteboards, talk partners and key questioning.  Following the teach, the children have the opportunity to practise the skill being taught and show that they can achieve the learning objective. As with all lessons, differentiation is achieved through skilful questioning and teacher use of assessment for learning to identify how best to involve all pupils in the sessions.

 

We plan with a focus on objective led learning, ensuring there is a clear progression in learning from year to year.  By doing so, we meet the expectations of the National Curriculum.  All lessons show a clear learning objective, success criteria, key vocabulary and key questions. Reasoning is a focus each week so that we can enable our learners to apply their knowledge and understanding and become confident mathematicians.

 

We use Times Tables Rock Stars to ensure children learn their tables in a timely manner and understand the importance of key times table and division facts.  All children have a login.

 

Each day, pupils have the opportunity to record their work in their books, following the success criteria detailed in the teacher modelling.  Teachers, are always clear when a mental strategy should be used instead of a written strategy-it is important that children understand that a written method is only used if a mental strategy cannot be utilised.

 

Science

SCIENCE

Science is taught explicitly and is often linked to our topics. Every half term, children will plan, investigate and present data for at least one full experiment. We often use 'concept cartoons' to inspire young minds and to enable our children to 'design' their own investigations based on questions they would like to have answered. This approach provides a far richer and purposeful experience.

 

Through science, we aim to develop curiosity, enjoyment, skills and a growing understanding of scientific knowledge in all our pupils by allowing them to raise questions and investigate the world in which they live.  As a result, children gain a solid scientific knowledge and understanding as well as developing the skills necessary for testing and investigating (working scientifically).

 

To make learning relevant, teachers draw on pupils’ everyday experiences and relate science to real world. They encourage pupils to be inquisitive about the world around them and ask scientific questions. 

 

Science Week

Every year we organise a Science Week with a focus, during which we have special guests and events such as science magic shows. Most importantly, the children carry out a variety of practical investigations in and out of class in order to test and experience natural phenomena they might find challenging to understand.

 

Computing

COMPUTING

Through our programme of study for computing, children learn how computers and computer systems work, they design and build programs, develop their ideas using technology and create a range of content.  In this subject area, children use technology as creators and future innovators as well as 'users' of technology.  A main element of learning in this area is ensuring that our children know how to use the internet and other technologies safely, responsibly and ethically through an embedded, broad ranging online safety curriculum.

 

Humanities

HUMANITIES

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. Our children gain an appreciation of life in other cultures, recognise the importance of sustainable development for the future of mankind and become enthused and excited about the planet they live on. 

 

In history, we help pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. We hope to inspire pupils’ curiosity to know more about the human past. We give children the opportunity to: ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement. Our children learn to understand the complexity of people’s lives, the process of change, the diversity of societies and relationships between different groups, as well as their own identity and the challenges of their time. 

 

Art and Design

ART AND DESIGN

Art and design projects have always been a core part of what we do.  We have links with local artists and each year, we add to the wonderful array of splendid art work that can be seen dotted around our school!  Our most recent mosaic project involved the whole community and is proudly displayed in our playground!

 

In art lessons, we encourage pupils learn to see themselves as artists, express their own ideas, use their imaginative and creative ideas and give meaning to the world around them. Pupils are given the opportunity to communicate what they see and feel through a variety of materials, textures, colours and patterns and use a range of materials, tools and techniques. They learn to critically evaluate their own and other people’s work, giving an opinion on what they think might improve the piece of work. They learn how art has influenced the way in which people live and how it communicates and is a means of learning about artist from different cultures.

 

In design and technology, we value the importance of children following the complete cycle of idea, to plan, to prototype, to make, to review. Our units of work are robust and we aim to prepare our children to be the designers of the future! 

 

P. E

P.E

We are proud to have very strong links with Salaam Peace, a key organisation that works in the community.  The Salaam Peace team works at school each week, teaching enhanced levels of P.E. to our pupils.  Throughout the year, each year group will have the chance to work with the team.  In addition to this, we provide the statutory 2 hours of PE each week.  Our children in year 5 receive swimming lessons as well.  Each year, we have our traditional sports day and welcome parental involvement!

 

The teaching of P.E is progression led and we work in half termly units.  Each week there is one indoor session and one outdoor session.  We see P.E as a crucial element in developing pupils' self-confidence in their ability to manage themselves and their bodies. We also believe that exercise and keeping healthy is instrumental to good well-being.  

 

RE and PSHE

RE AND PSHE

Like other community schools in Waltham Forest, we follow the Local Authority SACRE agreed syllabus. Our Religious Education curriculum explores all the main world religions, including many festivals and celebrations. We aim to use an open and objective approach to help children to understand and appreciate the diverse and multi-cultural society we live in. We encourage discussion and debate that children can benefit from regardless of their personal faith and we promote respect and tolerance of the beliefs of others.

 

In PSHE, we use 'Jigsaw' which is a programme recognised as meeting the needs of the National Curriculum whilst also meeting the statutory requirements for PSHE.  The programme incorporates mental health throughout and there are key resources used in each class such as our Jigsaw soft toys that are a part of all PSHE lessons.  We also have the chime bar in each class to support the creation of a calm environment. 

 

We are committed to pupils' well-being and devote one hour a week to quality PSHE time.  Through our programme of study for PSHE, we aim to develop the qualities and attributes our learners need to thrive as individuals, family members and members of society. 

 

Our aim is to develop self-understanding, empathy and the ability to work with others, to help the children to enjoy healthy and productive relationships in all aspects of their lives. In such rapidly changing and challenging times, it also helps them to connect and apply the knowledge and understanding they learn in all subjects to practical, real-life situations while helping them to feel safe and secure enough to fulfil their academic potential.

 

Performing Arts

PERFORMING ARTS

Music, dance and drama are important forms of expression.  We have our very own music room with a range of wonderful instruments and we work closely with the peripatetic music service.  Some of children’s music lessons are taught by non-class-based music teachers who are skilled and inspire our youngsters. The children are inspired to imagine, to invent and to express their feelings. They are taught to listen and respond; perform and compose within their own classes.

 

We have always encouraged performance and welcome our pupils to perform in our weekly assemblies.  We hope to inspire children to pursue their passions and by providing such opportunities.  We have weekly singing practice sessions and also have a choir and hope to develop our own orchestra.

 

Drama provision is also important to us and we enjoy producing whole school productions for the whole community to enjoy.  

 

French

FRENCH

We teach French in key stage two.   Through fun and varied activities including songs and games, children learn to recognise and understand conversational phrases, ask and answer questions and talk about themselves in French. Lessons are planned to use the languages scheme of work. In each lesson children can listen to and repeat new words and phrases, supported by sound files and video clips to aid correct pronunciation. Children are also encouraged to use French phrases and instructions outside of French lessons to help consolidate their knowledge and understanding.

 

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