Curriculum Rationale

The rationale behind our curriculum at Brackensdale Primary School 2018/19

The curriculum is designed with the children’s interests at the centre to provide memorable experiences, creative opportunities and time to embed skills across the curriculum.  Each topic starts with an activity to engage interest and curiosity.  At this stage, topic webs and ideas for learning at home are shared with parents and carers to strengthen the partnership between home and school.  The curriculum is designed to allow time for development of skills, acquisition of knowledge, creative thinking and problem solving leading to deeper learning that can be applied in different contexts.  Underpinning this is a drive to enrich vocabulary, develop communication and further improve listening skills.  At the end of the topic, children, parents and carers are encouraged to reflect, celebrate and value all our successes. 

Curriculum Development

We understand at Brackensdale ER Primary School that the early years are an extremely important stage in a child’s life and making the start of their school journey a positive one is essential. Mrs Chapman in the nursery and her team will work in partnership with families to provide a safe, secure and stimulating learning environment. We will provide language rich learning opportunities to develop their early communication skills as well as opportunities to develop physical, personal and social skills through indoor and outdoor learning.

Brackensdale follows the ‘Cornerstones Curriculum’ which encourages the children to experiment, take risks, explore and pursue some of their own interests within their topic work. As mentioned above each theme starts with an engaging opener and concludes with a ‘celebratory’ ending. By the end of the topic they are able to present their learning outcomes to each other, other classes, or their parents. We encourage them to take a pride in their work and explicitly recognise the skills they have learnt and will embed as they move through the school.

We believe that distributed learning is an effective way for the children to learn and they will revisit previous learning after one lesson or after a longer period such as a week, month or at the end of the topic. Evidence shows that this is a more successful way of strengthening their long term memory and its ability to hold information. We are also now using retrieval practice as another way of providing children to remember knowledge they have previously learnt. The children may do short tests or quizzes so they are regularly practicing retrieving knowledge or this may be done through the use of flashcards or concept maps.

 At Brackensdale we strongly believe that education is not all about the children reaching targets or preparing for exams, it has to be about far more than this. We want our curriculum to underpin our aspiration for all children to be outstanding citizens as well as access learning and enjoy acquiring new skills and knowledge. We strongly want to encourage them to do this throughout their life, beyond primary and secondary school in whatever they choose to do.

 If you go to the PARENTS pencil on the website you will see what your child is studying in their respective year group and please feel free to contact the following members of staff if you want any further information.

Nursery and Foundation stage – Mrs P. Chapman

KS1 – Mrs S Mills

KS2- Mr B Radbourne

Ark- Mrs A Bell

Phoenix- Mrs N Neale

Yearly overviews will be available very soon on the website for each individual year group.

 See the link below for more information about the Cornerstones Curriculum.