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Our Curriculum

Firm Foundations: Our Curriculum Intent

At St. Bernadette’s we provide the highest possible educational outcomes for all children and we believe a broad and balanced curriculum is central to this.  Through the teaching of an ambitious, creative and knowledge-rich curriculum, our children are given opportunities to practise, discuss and develop their knowledge and skills through a wide range of subjects. Children are encouraged to reflect on what they have learnt and on how their knowledge and skills can be applied to different subjects and real life situations.

Our curriculum approach has been informed by the work of:

  • Professor Barry Carpenter; A Recovery Curriculum: Loss and Life of our children and schools post pandemic.
  • Mary Myatt; The Curriculum Gallimaufry to Coherence.
  • Mart Myatt; Back on Track
  • Debra Kidd; A Curriculum of Hope.
  • The work of The Teaching School Alliance.
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The five key principles of the St. Bernadette’s Curriculum

Our curriculum is based on five key principles: Coherence, Credibility, Creativity, Compassion and Community.

  • Coherence; we will provide a curriculum that is coherent, ensuring that there are tangible links across the learning during the children’s time at St. Bernadette’s. It aims to build, broaden and develop learning as they progress, so that learning is echoed, year on year, to ensure a more deepened understanding.  
  • Credibility; we will ensure that children develop detailed knowledge and skills across the curriculum so that excellence and success is achieved. 
  • Creativity; we will provide a curriculum which supports children to be innovative, playful, experimental, and to make all important connections. Creativity is often solely associated with the ‘creative arts’ but we believe it should be identified and developed in all areas of learning. 
  • Compassion; we will support and actively encourage children to develop empathy for others, as well as different points of view and perspectives. This ‘active compassion’ equips children to be responsible and respectful citizens, so that they contribute positively to society. 
  • Community; we will ensure that children will engage actively in their community and that the community actively engages in the lives and learning of the children at St. Bernadette’s. 

Our Curriculum Implementation

 The interplay between curriculum and pedagogy; what we teach and how we teach it, is an important aspect of the St. Bernadette’s curriculum.

At the heart of our curriculum, is the belief that knowledge is empowering, it unlocks doors, provides a foundation for achieving success, reaches deep understanding and enables creativity. The more children know, the more they can learn. Planning Planning providesthe fine details of what we aim for the children to know, the experiences we provide and the kinds of questions we will ask.

At St. Bernadette’s, as well as following the National Curriculum, we also develop and explore concepts that we feel are important for our children in developing their social, moral, spiritual and cultural understanding. This enables a curriculum that is coherent, rich in knowledge and experience and where attention is given to the hinterland as well as the core.

The Curriculum overview, mapped out for each year group, demonstrates how we have developed sequencing, progression and cross curricular links across a year group and across the school. All subject leaders can clearly articulate a detailed rationale on why concepts are taught, as well as the skills and knowledge that are vital for success in their subject. We provide children with access to stimulating learning environments and high quality resources to support, challenge and inspire the learning process. Continuous Professional Development (CPD)

At St. Bernadette’s all staff access, Continuous Professional Development (CPD) to ensure expert subject knowledge, so that the highest quality of teaching and learning is delivered. We are a part of the National College and Sussex Coast Alliance. Research- Informed Pedagogy We have considered the latest research into the science of learning and cognitive load theory so that we can ensure that learnt knowledge is truly retained and memorable. Barak Rosenshine’s ‘Principles of Instruction’, as outlined in our Teaching and Learning Policy and Assessment Policy, underpin the teaching and learning of our curriculum.  Reviewing learning;  Questioning and checking for children’s understanding;  Sequencing concepts and modelling;  Stages of practice. (Sherington, T., (2019) ‘Rosenshine’s Principles in Action,’ Melton: John Catt Education Ltd.)

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