Our 'Big Picture' Curriculum
At The Meadows, our curriculum is built on the requirements of the National Curriculum and The Early Years Foundation Stage.
Themes are chosen which cater for the needs and interests of our children, reflect our local area and stimulate learning.
By linking subjects through themes, we aim to provide an inspiring, engaging and motivating curriculum that promotes both excellence and enjoyment. Our thematic approach enables all pupils to develop as learners and reach their potential. Each term, we start with an open-ended 'Big Picture' question, which is designed to encourage deep thinking. Memorable experiences are planned to inspire children, such as visiting experts or trips to significant places. Finally, pupils work towards an authentic outcome for all their learning by the end of the term, which places it in a real-life context and gives purpose.
Our 'Discover' term in the autumn focuses on history, with geography taking the lead in spring during our 'Explore' term. The final term of the year is our 'Create' term, when art and design are explored in detail. All other subjects are weaved into a thematic approach throughout. We hope this approach inspires the pupils to expand their learning beyond the school day and enthuses individuals to continue to investigate and learn at home.
Sharing our Learning
We continually strive to bring real-life experiences and opportunities into the curriculum and immerse the children within the current theme and make learning relevant. Each term, the pupils build on and learn new skills, concepts and knowledge. This is outlined for families in regular newsletters that give information about the learning that will take place. ‘Big Picture’ experiences allow children to share what they have learned at the end of a term with a wider audience, which may include their peers, staff, governors and the local community.
To support learning, many planned ‘first hand’, practical experiences and built into the framework to support learning. These enrichment activities are key to the learning that takes place. These may be visits or visitors to the school and form an integral part of the curriculum. In addition to this, all Year 6 pupils have the chance to take part in a residential visit. Professionals and experts support teaching and are able to extend learning opportunities. Subjects such as PE, dance, music and art are often delivered by specialists.
We aim to encourage independence from an early age and support the children to overcome any barriers in their learning. We support the children in choosing their own resources, places to work and approaches to tasks. Role-play, drama and outdoor learning are all approaches to learning that are planned regularly throughout the school. ICT skills are developed throughout the curriculum in order to provide children with key skills they will need in later life.
Our school ethos is based upon the promotion of self belief and positive attitudes to life. We celebrate the children’s achievements together and encourage our children to be the best they can possibly be!