Key Features of Learning at Hazlehurst
Learning is central to everything that goes on at Hazlehurst and we try to ensure that children have plenty of ‘rich’ experiences every year through visits, meeting visitors and a practical, engaging curriculum. Some of the key features of our curriculum are explained below. We consider these to be important features as they are taught and used in all year groups throughout our school and help children understand their learning and give them skills to make good progress across the curriculum.
Our programmes of study in KS1 and KS2 aims to develop skills and attributes such as resilience, self-esteem, risk-management, teamworking and critical thinking in the context of three core themes: health and wellbeing, relationships and living in the wider world (including economic wellbeing). It is delivered through question based model from the PSHE association.
‘Quality Circle Time’ is a chance to explore issues that may arise within the class. Children are encouraged to discuss any problems and others offer solutions saying ‘Would it help if…?’ These sessions are part of our whole school ‘listening systems’ for children and are designed to increase the children’s awareness of themselves and how we affect each other. Sessions are carefully structured to ensure children reach positive solutions and everyone leaves with a sense of well-being.
Phonics & Reading
In EYFS and KS1 we follow ‘Letters and Sounds’, which is published phonics guidance from the DfE and use Jolly Phonics images, songs and actions as a vehicle for delivery in class. In reading, the children initially read decodable books matched to the phonic ability in order to achieve success quickly and become fluent readers. We use a range of different reading schemes to support children's learning.
In Reception & Year 1 this is a session of focused reading time where groups read with a teacher or teaching assistant looking at a specific reading/phonics target. From Year 2 upwards, classes read together. They focus on comprehension skills and vocabulary using a short 'Reading Explorers' text once a week. Three days are spent sharing a class text, developing a love of reading and knowledge of different authors. One day is used as an independent reading session when children can choose any format to read for pleasure.
Big Maths is a rigorous, systematic and structured approach which is designed to ensure children become properly numeric as they journey through school. The framework is known as CLIC (Counting, Learn Its, It’s Nothing New and Calculation) and is characterised by accurate steps of progression (known as progress drives) that make new learning easy and obvious to children by cashing in on the timeless natural laws of Maths.
The Learning Challenge curriculum
At Hazlehurst, we follow a topic-based approach to learning. Teachers plan topics around a theme, which have a geography, history or science core element and a ‘big question’ running through the learning. We call each theme a ‘learning challenge’ and this learning journey starts with a ‘Wow’ moment to hook the children’s interest and usually ends with a finished product or a celebration event.
At Hazlehurst, we follow Bury’s agreed syllabus for Re through a series of RE days throughout the year. This enables us to enrich the children’s experience with visitors and trips to immerse themselves in learning about faiths and beliefs in a variety of world religions.
Music is delivered through Charanga, a Musical School Scheme provides teachers with week-by-week lessons for each year group in the school, from ages 5–11 including teaching skills of Listening and Appraising; Musical Activities — creating and exploring; and Singing and Performing. The curriculum is enhanced with the opportunities to learn a recorder from Summer term in Year 2 and throughout Year 3. Once in Year 4 the children are given a brass instrument to learn and progress through preliminary and other grades with support from specialist teaching provided by Bury Music Service. Musical shows are also performed from Reception to Year 6 at different points in the year which enrich children’s musical experiences also.
Computing incorporates coding, robotics, computer hardware, and research projects to stimulate and challenge students whilst fulfilling the criteria of the Computing National Curriculum in England. Pupils learn the value of a multidisciplinary approach as they develop their logic and creativity through tasks that require them to draw on their mathematical, scientific, and design & technology skills.
E-safety is delivered in each class using the eAWARE scheme. This enables pupils to answer questions about their understanding of E-safety and then the teacher is able to teach gaps in the children's knowledge.
We follow the Learning Challenge Curriculum through a sequence of Art lessons, this involves encouraging the children to express their creativity and artistic ability. The children have the opportunity to research artists, experiment with different media, plan and produce final pieces, then finally evaluate their work. In each year group the children also have the opportunity to study an artist in depth over the course of the year.
All of the children at Hazlehurst take part in at least two hours of active PE lessons. One lesson is delivered by external specialised sports coaches, the other is taught by the class teacher. As well as a session with the sports coach, children in Reception also have the opportunity for physical development through continuous provision. All year groups work on the development and progression of skills, they are able to apply these skills whilst learning a variety of different sports. We aim to provide opportunities for the children to compete in a variety of competitions, as doing this builds levels of confidence, team work and sportsmanship. We also offer a range of extra-curricular activities.
Design and Technology
We aim to teach Design and Technology in a way that embeds the increasing importance of the topic in everyday life, in an engaging and exciting way. In line with the expectations of the National Curriculum, we aim to develop children’s ability to research, design, create and evaluate. We aim to deliver an enquiry rich curriculum, and this includes Design and Technology, as each topic has been developed to allow for children to problem solve, be creative and to link their learning to real world problems. There is also opportunity for links with science, through STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths), which put their science learning in to practice, in a meaningful and purposeful way. Through their topics, the children will learn about famous designers, will learn skills based around cooking and nutrition, textiles, construction and 3D modeling.
Modern Foreign Languages
Children in key stage 2 are taught French using a scheme of work produced by Liverpool School Improvement team. The scheme which is based on the National Curriculum programmes of study builds pupils' knowledge and skills, encouraging them to become increasingly independent and creative in their language study. The aim is to produce language-learners who are well equipped for their next key stage.