At Wansdyke we believe in making meaningful connections between as many areas of learning as possible. This has many advantages, mainly that the children are immersed in a topic and develop an understanding of how inter-related ideas are, and this leads to better learning. Our topics start with a stimulus such as a book or a piece of art or music. The teachers then plan how they will deliver the rest of the curriculum linked to this idea. Our school uses separate books for Literacy, Numeracy and Science with our topic work recorded under the idea of ‘Linked Learning’ which encompasses the rest of the curriculum.
Art, craft and design embody some of the highest forms of human creativity. A high-quality art and design education should engage, inspire and challenge pupils, equipping them with the knowledge and skills to experiment, invent and create their own works of art, craft and design. As pupils progress, they should be able to think critically and develop a more rigorous understanding of art and design. They should also know how art and design both reflect and shape our history, and contribute to the culture, creativity and wealth of our nation.
- The national curriculum for art and design aims to ensure that all pupils:
- Produce creative work, exploring their ideas and recording their experiences
- Become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other art, craft and design techniques
- Evaluate and analyse creative works using the language of art, craft and design
- Know about great artists, craft makers and designers, and understand the historical and cultural development of their art forms.
Once a year, the pupils at Wansdyke school have the opportunity to make a lantern with their families to contribute to the Devizes lantern parade. A workshop is run after school in which the families and pupils of Wansdyke, are shown how to make a ‘box’ or ‘present’ structure. The basic shape can then be creatively adapted and changed to make a variety of different designs.
Design & Technology
Purpose of study
Design and technology is an inspiring, rigorous and practical subject. Using creativity and imagination, pupils design and make products that solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values. They acquire a broad range of subject knowledge and draw on disciplines such as mathematics, science, engineering, computing and art. Pupils learn how to take risks, becoming resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable citizens. Through the evaluation of past and present design and technology, they develop a critical understanding of its impact on daily life and the wider world. High-quality design and technology education makes an essential contribution to the creativity, culture, wealth and well-being of the nation.
The national curriculum for design and technology aims to ensure that all pupils:
- Develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world
- Build and apply a repertoire of knowledge, understanding and skills in order to design and make high-quality prototypes and products for a wide range of users
- Critique, evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others
- Understand and apply the principles of nutrition and learn how to cook.
Personal, Social and Health Education
Personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) education is an important and necessary part of all pupils’ education. PSHE is a non-statutory subject but at Wansdyke we recognise its importance, so make time for independent PSHE lessons but also identify links with the pupils when teaching other subjects or dealing with individual issues. To support the teachers with the delivery of high-quality PSHE we use the Wiltshire Learn4Life Scheme, but the teachers have the flexibility to adapt this to suit each cohort’s specific needs. Considering this the Government has stipulated that they “expect schools to use their PSHE education programme to equip pupils with a sound understanding of risk and with the knowledge and skills necessary to make safe and informed decisions”.
At Wansdyke the teachers use PSHE education to build, where appropriate, on the statutory content already outlined in the national curriculum, the basic school curriculum and statutory guidance on: drug education, financial education, sex and relationship education (SRE) and the importance of physical activity and diet for a healthy lifestyle.
Sex and relationship education (SRE) is an important part of PSHE education and is statutory in maintained secondary schools.
When any school provides SRE they must have regard to the Secretary of State’s guidance ; this is a statutory duty. Academies do not have to provide SRE but must also have regard to Secretary of State’s guidance when they do.
The SRE is usually covered in Terms 5 or 6 using The BBC Living and Growing resources. Detailed information is sent home to parents to inform them what their child will be covering and an invitation is sent out for viewing the DVD prior to your child.
Running through the delivery of all PSHE, SRE and everyday school life, including Collective Worship, the children at Wansdyke are taught about the importance of British Values.
At Wansdyke a high-quality history education helps pupils gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. It inspires pupils’ curiosity to know more about the past. Pupils are equiped to ask perceptive questions, think critically, weigh evidence, sift arguments, and develop perspective and judgement.
History helps pupils 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.
The national curriculum for history aims to ensure that all pupils:
- know and understand the history of these islands as a coherent, chronological narrative, from the earliest times to the present day: how people’s lives have shaped this nation and how Britain has influenced and been influenced by the wider world
- know and understand significant aspects of the history of the wider world: the nature of ancient civilisations; the expansion and dissolution of empires; characteristic features of past non-European societies; achievements and follies of mankind
- gain and deploy a historically grounded understanding of abstract terms such as ‘empire’, ‘civilisation’, ‘parliament’ and ‘peasantry’
- understand historical concepts such as continuity and change, cause and consequence, similarity, difference and significance, and use them to make connections, draw contrasts, analyse trends, frame historically-valid questions and create their own structured accounts, including written narratives and analyses
- understand the methods of historical enquiry, including how evidence is used rigorously to make historical claims, and discern how and why contrasting arguments and interpretations of the past have been constructed
- gain historical perspective by placing their growing knowledge into different contexts, understanding the connections between local, regional, national and international history; between cultural, economic, military, political, religious and social history; and between short- and long-term timescales.
At Wansdyke School Geography teaching inspires a fascination in children about the world and its people that will remain with them for the rest of their lives. Pupils learn about diverse places, people, resources and natural and human environments, together with a deep understanding of the Earth’s key physical and human processes. As pupils progress, their growing knowledge about the world should help them to deepen their understanding of the interaction between physical and human processes, and of the formation and use of landscapes and environments. Geographical knowledge, understanding and skills provide the framework and approaches that explain how the Earth’s features at different scales are shaped, interconnected and change over time.
The national curriculum for geography aims to ensure that all pupils:
- develop contextual knowledge of the location of globally significant places – both terrestrial and marine – including their defining physical and human characteristics and how these provide a geographical context for understanding the actions of processes
- understand the processes that give rise to key physical and human geographical features of the world, how these are interdependent and how they bring about spatial variation and change over time
- are competent in the geographical skills needed to:
- collect, analyse and communicate with a range of data gathered through experiences of fieldwork that deepen their understanding of geographical processes
- interpret a range of sources of geographical information, including maps, diagrams, globes, aerial photographs and Geographical Information Systems (GIS)
- communicate geographical information in a variety of ways, including through maps, numerical and quantitative skills and writing at length.
Music is a unique way of communicating that can inspire and motivate children. It is a vehicle for personal expression and it can play an important part in the personal development of people. Music reflects the culture and society we live in, and so the teaching and learning of music enables children to better understand the world they live in. At Wansdyke, we provide opportunities for all children to create, play, perform and enjoy music, to develop the skills to appreciate a wide variety of musical forms, and to begin to make judgements about the quality of music.
The national curriculum for music aims to ensure that all pupils:
- Perform, listen to, review and evaluate music across a range of historical periods, genres, styles and traditions, including the works of the great composers and musicians
- Learn to sing and to use their voices, to create and compose music on their own and with others, have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument, use technology appropriately and have the opportunity to progress to the next level of musical excellence
- Understand and explore how music is created, produced and communicated, including through the inter-related dimensions: pitch, duration, dynamics, tempo, timbre, texture, structure and appropriate musical notations.
At Wansdyke, we use Music Express to build experiences and develop understanding of all the elements of music. The scheme is carefully -structured and it provides an inter-related progression through: exploring sounds, beat, pitch, performance, composition, notation and structure.
We encourage the children to actively listen to music during their dedicated music lessons and also during assembly. The children enter the hall to music carefully selected to engage the children and enhance their listening skills.
At Wansdyke we encourage the children to perform either by singing or playing a musical instrument. We have singing assemblies and we have a thriving choir who perform regularly within the community.
We also have a thriving steel drum band who rehearse weekly and perform during assemblies and school events throughout the year.
According to the latest guidance from the government, via the National Curriculum, every school needs to have a broad and balanced curriculum that
- promotes the spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development of pupils at the school
- prepares pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of later life
- promotes British values.
Schools also have statutory responsibilities to promote community cohesion (Education Act, 2006). RE plays an important part in fulfilling all of these responsibilities.
Because RE is a statutory subject which sits alongside, but not in the National Curriculum, there is no national curriculum dictating the content of Wansdykes RE programme. There is national non-statutory guidance, however, which we do follow at Wansdyke. Like many other local and National schools we have chosen to teach RE following the Discovery RE Scheme of Work.
What is Discovery RE?
Discovery RE is a comprehensive ENQUIRY-BASED, teaching programme for Religious Education for Years EYFS – Year 6, a set of medium-term planning offering structure and a whole-school programme for primary school RE. This approach takes very seriously the philosophy that children are free to make their own choices and decisions concerning religion and belief but that to do this meaningfully they need knowledge and skills with which to evaluate different belief positions including their own.
What is the Discovery RE teaching approach?
The 2013 Ofsted report on RE, “Religious Education: realising the potential”, suggests “using the approach of a philosophical enquiry can deepen and extend pupils’ investigation into religion”.
“In the most effective RE teaching, enquiry is based at the heart of the learning”.
Discovery RE promotes this enquiry-based model because it had become evident from teachers and children’s work across hundreds of schools in England, that this motivates in-depth exploration of RE content/subject knowledge in order to answer big enquiry questions like:
What is good about Good Friday?
Does joining the Khalsa make a person a better Sikh?
Does belief in Akhirah (life after death) help Muslims lead good lives?
The subject content in Discovery RE includes Christianity in every year group, as recommended in the national guidance, as well as one other principal religion in each year group. The principal religions covered include Christianity plus Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism and Sikhism.
- At Wansdyke School we believe that the learning of a foreign language provides a valuable educational, social and cultural experience for our pupils. It helps them to develop communication skills including key skills of speaking and listening and extends their knowledge of how language works. Learning another language gives children a new perspective on the world, encouraging them to understand their own cultures and those of others.
- There is a statutory requirement for children in KS2 to learn a foreign language. Children entering KS2 should have a basic foundation in French learning due to the provision provided in EYFS and KS1. There is no statutory requirement for children in EYFS or KS1 to learn a foreign language. However, we believe at Wansdyke that, the younger the child learns another language, the more confident they become in speaking it. We also believe that learning another language has beneficial effects on the learning of one’s own language as children start to see patterns and spot similarities/differences between their native tongue and the foreign language they are learning.
- Teaching in KS1 will be focus on key language and happen informally. Lessons will be planned for and delivered in KS2. The focus language taught in our school is French. The children learn about other cultures and languages during the annual European Languages day in September. We also enjoy taking part in the cluster languages day in the summer where we participate in languages activities with children from other primary schools in the cluster.