The curriculum is designed to support the aspirations of pupils and their parents, and pupils themselves undoubtedly enjoy coming to school, working together on project work and in the many extra-curricular activities available to them.
– Ofsted 2014
The children in Reception follow the Foundation Stage curriculum and Years 1 to 6 follow the National Curriculum. We use a themed approach to curriculum planning. This helps children to understand natural links between topics and maximises curriculum time.
Visit our class pages to find out what each class is learning this term.
In September 2014, a new National Curriculum was introduced. In response to this we redesigned our school curriculum, introducing exciting new topics in many areas of the curriculum.
Communication, Language and Literacy
‘The overarching aim for English in the national curriculum is to promote high standards of language and literacy by equipping pupils with a strong command of the spoken and written word, and to develop their love of literature through widespread reading for enjoyment.’ The Primary National Curriculum Framework 2014
In English we aim to develop a love of reading, a wide and interesting vocabulary and an ability to communicate effectively in both written and spoken English. Details of the specific attainment requirements for each year group can be found in the National Curriculum Framework.
Reading and phonics is taught using ‘Letters and Sounds’. Every class has a set of books that are part of our Reading Spine. These books are shared at the end of the day and introduce children to the joy of reading for pleasure. Writing is taught using Talk for Writing. The children learn story and text structures, embedding key vocabulary and language patterns before creating their own, independent versions. Some of the texts used in class are available as e-books for you to share with your child.
Modern Foreign Languages
Pupils at Windermere learn French from Year 3. They learn to talk about themselves and their lives, developing this into simple written French by Year 6.
Download the MFL Curriculum
Mathematics is essential to everyday life, critical to science, technology and engineering, and necessary for financial literacy and most forms of employment. Therefore our teaching of maths encourages fluency in the fundamentals of mathematics, the ability to use mathematical reasoning and to solve problems using maths. Details of the specific attainment requirements for each year group can be found in the National Curriculum Framework.
Knowledge and Understanding of the World
We aim for science teaching to be as practical and as investigative as possible. This helps children to make good learning links and to remember what they have found out.
Download the Science Curriculum
Our geography teaching covers human and physical geography as well as learning about where places are. The curriculum topics are designed to develop children’s understanding of the world in which we live in a progressive way, starting with the local area and moving onto world geography. They also learn mapping skills and how geographical features such as coasts and volcanoes are formed. Also part of the geography curriculum is developing an understanding of the ecological impact of human activity.
Download the Geography Curriculum
In history the children develop an understanding of the chronology of significant historical periods in British and world history up to 1066 and other periods of history beyond this which are pertinent to St Albans. They learn about and compare significant historical figures such as Christopher Columbus and Neil Armstrong and also developments which have had a significant impact on British or World history.
Download the History Curriculum
Our art curriculum has been designed to develop children’s love of art in all its forms, progressively developing a range of skills in different media. The art is also linked to famous artists or artistic styles. For example Year 6 study the fashion and design work of Zandra Rhodes, whereas Year 1 use the still life skills of Cezanne to inspire their work with colour mixing and observational drawing.
Download the Art Curriculum
The computing curriculum has undergone enormous changes in recent years. Our pupils have access to laptops and iPads to support every aspect of their learning, but they also develop programming skills using a range of electronic devices and software. At Windermere we recognise the importance of developing an enquiring IT literate mind that will be able to take on the digital challenges of a workplace in ten to fifteen years time, which we can barely imagine.
Download the Computing Curriculum
Design and Technology
The D&T curriculum overlaps both computing and art in many aspects. Generally D&T is linked to other curriculum areas as well; this helps pupils to understand the relevance of their learning and to make good ‘learning links’.
Download the Design and Technology Curriculum
Music is an important part of life at Windermere. Each year our choir attend the O2 Young Voices concert and the whole school are involved in a Christmas and Summer musical production.
Year 4 and 5 learn to play the ukulele and delight everyone with musical assemblies at the end of term. Every class has a music lesson each week. Some of our music teaching uses an online resources called Charanga. The children can log into this resource to practise at home if they wish.
Download the Music Curriculum
PE includes not only games, but adventurous activities, gymnastics and dance as well. The PE curriculum includes a broad range of activities, developing skills and encouraging every child to enjoy physical activity in school. Some teaching is carried out by specialist PE coaches. Our free after school clubs extend the PE opportunities we offer pupils, who are encouraged to participate in competitive events in many different sports. Pupils in Years 4 and 3 learn to swim at a local swimming pool.
Download the PE Curriculum
For full details of our sporting activities, including our teams and competitors, see the Sports page.
Social and Emotional Development
Our Religious Education follows the Hertfordshire Agreed syllabus which supports the statutory requirements for Religious Education.
Download the RE Curriculum
Personal, Social and Health Education is intended to help children develop resilience, learning and interpersonal skills which will support their academic achievement and give them life skills for the future. Although we utilise the excellent SEAL (Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning) resource, PSHE also includes internet safety, road safety, fire safety, sun safety, protective behaviours, sex and relationships education and drug education.
Philosophy for Children (P4C)
P4C is a new part of our curriculum this year. Children are naturally curious and inquisitive. In P4C they are encouraged to ask questions, which don’t necessarily have answers and to challenge the thinking of both themselves and others. They learn to think critically, caringly, creatively and collaboratively. P4C builds confidence and speaking skills as well as developing higher order thinking skills.
Learning Together Weeks
Each term we run a Learning Together Week. These are themed weeks when the children are encouraged to leave their books behind and to learn through exploration and investigation. During this time they also learn together – working collaboratively not only with their peers, but also with other year groups and in vertically streamed groups which include children from Year 6 to Reception. These exciting learning opportunities create the sort of wonderful memories that our children take with them when they leave Windermere.