Canada Hill Primary School

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The Curriculum

Please use the menu on the left to find out more about various aspects of the curriculum at Canada Hill.

 

-Not all that counts can be counted-

Test scores and measures of achievement tell you where a student is, but they don’t tell you where a student could end up.” – Carol Dweck

What we are aiming for?

Canada Hill Primary School will provide a broad and challenging curriculum that inspires children (and staff) and prepares them to be successful learners and active citizens in the 21st century.

We will strive to ensure that all children quickly gain key skills in reading, writing, speaking, listening and numeracy. The broader curriculum will recognise and celebrate our history and will celebrate different cultures, whilst connecting learning to the contemporary issues of our times such as sustainability, globalisation, community cohesion and developments in technology.

We will plan explicitly for the development of positive dispositions and attitudes to learning and for successful social interaction throughout the school, staff and children will be taught about characteristics of effective learning and having a ‘Growth Mindset’ approach to life.

Curriculum Delivery

Our curriculum will be flexible in its delivery, time allocations and teaching styles. At the heart of our curriculum we have 6 main teaching tenets that we see as crucial to a successful curriculum

Our curriculum…

…is child centred

If it’s not good for our pupils we don’t do it. We monitor the effect of changes we make and make decisions quickly if things are not working at a school level, class level, group or individual level.

…has tangible outcomes linked to strong drivers that produce tantalising hooks.

Our staff work hard to ensure that the curriculum is thematically linked often to key drivers from subjects such as Geography, History and Science, but also to local and national events or one off moments that inspire everyone to take a new direction. At the end of a term or half term a key outcome is decided upon that will have an audience either within the school or in the wider community and children work hard towards their end goal.

… is assessed via a robust Elicitation Cycle

Our curriculum delivery is based on a robust elicitation cycle that

  • o Values progress over attainment
  • o Stimulates regular fluid groupings in classes relevant to current strength and weaknesses within a short unit of work.
  • o Prevents children limiting their expectations by labelling themselves.
  • o Allows us to challenge children in each unit of work in order to deepen their learning experiences and be continually challenged.
  • o Encourages children to meaningfully self-assess against relevant short term targets

…celebrated mistakes and misunderstandings

We celebrate mistakes at every opportunity as a chance to learn and ensure that our pupils learn in classrooms where they feel safe to take risks, make mistakes and share those mistakes so that we can all learn and mover forward. Children are taught to find their own mistakes and respond positively to evaluation from others be it teachers or pupils.

…is challenging for all

Our teachers challenges pupils at the point of learning so that they are made to ‘struggle’ on a daily basis. If they are struggling but progressing, then they are learning. If they are not struggling they are unlikely to be learning very much at all.

…makes children think about their Learning Behaviours

At the core of our approach is the idea that we have to teach the children the learning behaviours that will make them successful. We articulate these to our pupils and parents at every opportunity and they form the backbone of the conversations we have throughout our learning journeys. Some core behaviours are.

  • Courage – take a risk, seek a challenge; we love new mistakes.
  • Curiosity – ask questions; listen; look.
  • Resilience – don’t give up; push on through; believe in yourself.
  • Responsibility – stickability.
  • Reciprocity – we collaborate; we support; we learn better together.
  • Respect – all things
  • Humility – we all make mistakes. Accept our own and others with good grace.
  • Belief – we all believe in each other.

…happens in a calm, collaborative and inspiring learning environment

At Canada Hill pupils come into class calmly and quietly and are ready to learn. As soon as they enter the class they are given an appropriate activity so that they are immediately engaged and active.

The classrooms at Canada Hill are all kept clean and tidy, with very little clutter so that they are calm spaces in which to learn. The walls have ‘live’ displays and working walls that celebrate the learning journeys and outcomes being created in each class. There are no ‘dead’ displays at Canada Hill.

At Canada Hill we all work together to make our time at the school the very best it can be. We all belive in each other and help each other face up to the challenges that real learning presents us and we all work together to climb out of ‘the pit’ of confusion that we often find ourselves in.

We are praised for our progress rather than our attainment.

…produces ‘Real-time’ summative assessment

We have developed an App with a company called StarJar that allows us to collect all our evidence about our pupils in one place using teacher iPads. However, the best feature is that StarJar allows us to preload our week’s objectives that can be linked back to key skills tables. Then when a lesson or short sequence is finished a teacher simply needs to click on the preloaded objectives and click on the children they feel achieved it this time. This then updates all children’s records. If they want teachers can also ass explanatory notes and evidence at the time. The teacher does not then have to go back and assess this again as all the information is automatically store on the relevant places. This allows the SMT to take a snapshot of learning at the school at any time and the data is always up to date with evidence to back it up where needed.

Class organisation – what are the main changes as the children move through the school?

Reception

Taught in two Reception classes with an outdoor area.

Learning through structured play will be at the heart of the curriculum for our under 5s, with effective adult-child interactions promoting sustained shared thinking. Independent time will also include compulsory critical-thinking activities that will present the children with challenges and help them develop a Growth Mindset from an early age. Children will then access more direct learning activities with adults for their Mathematics and Literacy skills whilst other pupils get to play and explore independently.

Reception classes also spend one morning a week in our Forest School.

Key Stage 1

Taught in three parallel Year 1/2 classes

Transition into Key Stage 1 will recognise the need to incorporate elements of Foundation Stage practice into the infant curriculum and learning environment with independent learning challenges made available through the ‘Learning Lab’.

Children are taught five lessons of English a week and five lessons of Maths in their mixed ability classes. We aim to teach 2 hours PE a week. They are in sets for phonic lessons.

Key Stage 2

Taught in three parallel Year 3/4 classes and three Year 5/6 classes.

Year 3/4

Children are taught five lesson of English a week and five lessons of Maths in their mixed ability classes.

Children in Year 3/4 access Forest School for one afternoon a week.

Year 5/6

Children are taught five lessons of English a week in their mixed ability classes and five lessons of Maths in broad ability sets.

Children in Year 5/6 are given lots of opportunities to take on responsibilities throughout the school in order to develop their leadership, reciprocity, self-esteem and enterprise skills through:

  • School Council and School Ambassadors
  • School News Team
  • Digital Leaders
  • Play Leaders
  • Reading Buddies
  • Reception Challenge Play Leaders
  • Eco Councillors