At Ashby Fields, we teach maths through the mastery approach. Concepts are taught through a concrete (using physical equipment such as counters, cubes and tens frames) pictorial (through visual drawings and jottings) and abstract (mental and written approaches) This method develops deep and sustained understanding. Our teachers use a range of strategies to identify misconceptions during lessons and value pupils ‘brilliant mistakes’.
Home learning for maths is based on developing and securing basic skills in maths as fundamental building blocks to success in this subject. The children are asked to complete Numbots or TTRockstars which is an online programme that focuses on subitising, number bonds and progresses to learning times tables with fluency to support all areas of maths. We celebrate this home learning with certificates in our Celebration assemblies which take place on a Friday.
To ensure whole school consistency and progression, we use the DfE approved ‘Power Maths’ scheme to inform and guide our planning. Power Maths is a UK curriculum mastery programme designed to spark curiosity and excitement and nurture confidence in maths. It is built around a child centred lesson design that models and embeds a growth mindset approach to maths and focuses on helping all children to build a deep understanding of maths concepts. Teachers assess children’s knowledge and understanding of key concepts and adapt the sessions according to their needs, allowing for further consolidation and a rich variety of questioning.
Reading is a key skill that underpins a child’s ability to access the wider curriculum and allows them to broaden their vocabulary and develop vivid imaginations.
At Ashby Fields we ensure children are given lots of opportunities to read for both pleasure and as part of their daily learning. We use a multi-layered approach starting with daily phonic sessions in EYFS and Key stage 1, developing story language and sequence through the use of puppets, small world play, actions and story maps.
From Year 2, children use the ‘DERIC’ approach which develops their understanding of the text they are reading. This approach encourages the children to become ‘reading detectives’ exploring new vocabulary, the effects of words chosen and the impact on the reader.
DERIC stands for:
- Decoding teaches children to use their phonic knowledge to read unfamiliar words.
- Explain ensures children can understand unfamiliar words and broaden their vocabulary.
- Retrieve teaches the children to find information in the text in order to answer specific questions.
- Interpret encourages children to look at what is meant by the text and justify their interpretation of it with evidence.
- Choice focuses on the authors choice of words or layout. Children are encouraged to discuss the effect of specific choices that the author has made.
To develop children’s love of reading we also offer the following opportunities:
- Individual reading books – These are levelled books that the children will bring home to read as part of their home learning.
- Book swap boxes – These are found outside each classroom and children can swap books from home.
- Class readers – Teachers select high level texts to share with their children on a daily basis
- Library – Children have weekly library sessions and are encouraged to select books to take home to share with parents and carers.
- Reading road maps – These are reading challenges for each year group.
At Ashby Fields Primary School we are committed to providing a high-quality writing experience that instils a love of writing and explores rich language with our learners. Our pupils are given the tools to be able to communicate their thoughts, ideas and emotions effectively.
We believe that high quality vocabulary and texts are the key to developing fluent and engaged writers; exposing our children to these ,enables them to utilise what they have experienced to create inspired, interesting and accurate writing. We make use of a wide variety of tools to build the required skills and knowledge the children apply in their writing:
- Early Years and Key Stage 1 use Read, Write, Inc for phonics to create the building blocks for writing. This includes spellings, writing dictated sentences (Hold a sentence), building their own sentences around a power word and editing sentences for accuracy.
- Jane Considine ‘The Write Stuff’ is used with our children from Year 2. These approaches consist of:
- FANTASTICS to build the vocabulary and phrases needed within writing.
- Sentence stacking – developing writing sentence by sentence, high-quality modelling and scaffolding of writing.
- Chunking of learning – breaking the content into short, snappy chunks to keep children engaged and interested using ‘Inspire, Model and Empower’ steps of learning.
- Grammar Hammer is used from Year 2 and focusses on grammar skills to ensure children have a thorough knowledge and understanding of the mechanics of writing.
- Drama is throughout all year groups to explore and inspire children. We make use of a wide variety of dramatic techniques such as hot-seating, conscience alley and freeze framing. With our younger pupils, we use puppets, small world play, masks and costumes to re-enact and change familiar stories.
- Kinetic Letters Handwriting program is used to ensure that children develop fluent, legible and speedy handwriting that can be performed with automaticity, so that the attention of the brain is on the content of the writing thus building stamina and skills to write at length. Mastery of handwriting is a key priority for us as a school.
Science ignites all pupils’ curiosity in the world around them, instilling respect for all living organisms and our environment, and ensuring that our children recognise that developments in science, shape and change our lives. Our teaching of science develops scientific knowledge and conceptual understanding through the subjects of biology, chemistry and physics.
At Ashby Fields, we teach working scientifically through the six key areas of; asking questions, making predictions, setting up tests, observing and measuring, recording data and interpreting and explaining our findings.
The topics covered throughout school are:
- Animals including humans
- Everyday materials
- Seasonal changes
- Living things and their habitats
- Forces and magnets
- States of Matter
- Earth and Space
- Properties and Changes of Materials
- Evolution and Inheritance
- Scientists and Inventors
Regular events such as Science Week gives pupils the opportunity to ask and investigate their own questions. Professionals from various scientific backgrounds visit our school, informing and inspiring our pupils to consider careers in science.
Philosophers and Theologians
Ashby Fields follows the SACRE locally agreed syllabus for Religious Education. Teaching and learning focuses upon Christianity alongside the other principal religions which are represented in British society. Children are encouraged to investigate different religions, engage with their knowledge and reflect upon their learning and own lives, so they develop their ability to understand religion, beliefs and practices.
In EYFS, children build the foundation for their learning in Religious Education by exploring similarities and differences between themselves and others, and among families, communities and traditions.
In Key Stage One, children learn to identify similarities between Christianity and other religions through exploring family, neighbourhood and special times.
In Key Stage Two, pupils begin to look at wider national and international examples of religion. They do this through exploring diversity and similarities and differences within and between Christianity and other principal religions, whilst also acknowledging humanism and other world views.
Technology is now an important and integral part of our lifestyles. In this rapidly changing world, we need to equip children with the necessary skills to explore, research, present and analyse information. We want our pupils to use technology to express themselves and develop their ideas in a safe and appropriate way. When they leave our school, we need them to be suitably equipped to be able to move forward with their learning in Secondary school, support social communication and equip them with the skills for future success in the workplace.
At Ashby Fields, computing is taught through discreet lessons using the ‘Purple Mash’ scheme. Through these lessons, children will cover knowledge and skills in depth for each topic as they move through the school. Topics covered include: coding and computational thinking, spreadsheets, internet and email, art and design, music, database and graphing, writing and presenting and communication and networks.
Online safety is a key topic that will be taught throughout the teaching of computing. Where appropriate, computing skills are embedded in the wider curriculum.
At Ashby Fields Primary School, we teach the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to engage in an exploratory process of designing and making through a variety of creative and practical activities. The key elements are: Design, Make and Review. The National curriculum allows for the progression of skills meaning children are continually building upon and using their Technical Knowledge when completing projects.
We also invite children to take part in our annual DT competitions where they can apply knowledge and skills that they have learnt and showcase projects to the rest of the school.
At Ashby Fields Primary School our Design Technology curriculum results in the acquisition of knowledge and skills through direct teaching and stimulating projects that facilitate the children’s enthusiasm for learning. We incorporate cross curricular links to other subjects across the school, designing products that solve real and relevant problems. The children leave Ashby Fields Primary School, equipped with essentials skills and knowledge that will enable them to be ready for Key Stage 3 and for life as an adult in the wider world.
We believe that learning a foreign language provides an opening to other cultures. It also allows children to develop a curiosity and deepens their understanding of the world. At Ashby Fields Primary School we teach children language skills throughout school, encouraging children to learn basic phrases such as ‘good morning’ ‘hello’ ‘good afternoon’ and ‘goodbye’ from Reception. We celebrate those languages spoken at home by making our English as an additional language (EAL) learners badges to show their super power is being able to speak another language.
In Key stage 2, children are taught French as part of our curriculum.
We follow the Twinkl French scheme of work which is carefully planned to ensure a progressive coverage of the skills outlined in the National Curriculum. It gives children the opportunity to understand and respond to spoken and written language. Pupils are encouraged to speak with increasing confidence, finding ways to communicate ideas, facts and feelings with others. Children are taught through a range of different topics that progress through the years including ‘All About Me’, ‘Family and Friends’ ‘School Life’, ‘Holidays and Hobbies’ and ‘Shopping’.
At Ashby Fields, children learn about the great artists, craft makers and designers in our world. They learn and understand the historical and cultural development of how art and design have shaped our history, culture and wealth of our nation. We nurture their creativity and support them to develop their artistry, to be able to think critically and acquire a more rigorous understanding of art and design.
Through our curriculum, we provide children with high quality opportunities to embrace their creativity through art, craft and design. We engage and inspire our children, whilst equipping them with the knowledge and skills to experiment, invent, create and express their own individual ideas, thoughts and feelings, through their works of art. We ensure that all pupils have access to a wealth of experiences to become proficient in drawing, painting, sculpture and other art, craft and design techniques.
Geography teaches the children to appreciate and understand the world in which they live in. Throughout the school there is a focus on both human and physical geography, these are taught through whole school topics and discrete weeks.
Children in our school will learn a wide range of geography-based skills and knowledge throughout their journey with us and will continue to embed prior learning and vocabulary. They will study the geography of the UK, Europe and the wider World during their time at our school. As well as this, studies of the local area will allow children to develop their fieldwork skills, including map reading, data collection and field sketches. By the time they leave the school in Year 6, they will have a good understanding of how both local and global geography impacts on their lives and the lives of others.
At Ashby Fields Primary school, our History curriculum ignites children’s curiosity about the past and where they have come from. Children gain historical knowledge and understanding from key significant periods of time, taught through our whole school topics.
The teaching of history in our school equips pupils to ask questions about the past, analyse evidence, think critically, appreciate different perspectives and develop informed judgements. We support pupils to gain a coherent knowledge and understanding of Britain’s past and that of the wider world. We inspire pupils throughout the school year, celebrating important anniversaries, and re-visiting learning in a way that promotes appreciation for events from the past that shape our values today.
At Ashby Fields Primary School we deliver a high-quality physical education curriculum which allows all pupils to take part in competitive sport and physically demanding activities.
We ensure our children are active for sustained periods of time during PE lessons and at playtimes where children complete daily laps around the mile track. Alongside other areas of the curriculum, we educate and encourage all pupils to lead healthy and active lifestyles. Our children learn to master key skills needed in physical education through the REAL PE programme and then have the opportunity to apply this through other lessons such as gymnastics, dance, games and outdoor adventure sports. Children in Key stage 2 also participate in swimming lessons each year. Aa Ashby Fields, we employ specialist Premier Sports coaches who lead PE lessons and run a variety of sports clubs during lunchtimes. They also offer a range of after school clubs to all pupils. Our children have the opportunity to regularly take part in a variety of competitive sports both within school and against other schools in level 2 and level 3 competitions. At Ashby Fields, we have already achieved the School Games Mark silver award for 2 years running and are now aiming to achieve the gold award for our school.
Music is an integral element of our curriculum which is why we developed a specialist studio housing a wide range of instruments for the children to enjoy. Our curriculum allows children to build upon their natural enjoyment of music and encourages them to express themselves using an alternative media. We understand the impact of music on positive mental health and well-being and support children to find a lasting and rewarding sense of purpose and achievement through musical expression.
Children at Ashby Fields, develop skills to play a range of instruments from body percussion to musical instruments. Children are encouraged to express their ideas and feelings through musical creation and interpretation of music they hear. They learn to listen sympathetically and analytically, exploring why artists choose certain chords, tempo and rhythm. Pupils begin to understand the relationship between sound and symbols whilst developing a working knowledge of systems of notation for the use in performing and composing music. They learn to appreciate and evaluate the work of a range of composers and musicians from their own and other cultures. Throughout their school experience they will achieve confidence, competence and control in singing, using a wide range of instruments, making and classifying sounds, distinguishing pitch, dynamics, tempo, form, duration and expression. They will listen and respond to a range of music and learn to perform to a high standard.
At Ashby Fields we feel that children’s emotional wellbeing is a priority. We promote a nurturing culture and ethos throughout the school, providing our children with a safe place to learn, develop and achieve their potential. In 2019 we were awarded the Wellbeing Award to recognise how as a school we promote positive emotional wellbeing and mental health education and support.
At our school we use a restorative justice approach to help pupils resolve conflict, build trust and prevent harm. This enables all children to be listened to and for them to be able to communicate their feelings with others.
Our PSHE curriculum is based upon ‘Coram Life Education’ scheme. This encompasses the following principles: Safety, Caring, Achievement, Resilience and Friendship. The children have the opportunity to learn through PSHE lessons and weekly circle times in addition to developing these skills within all subjects. PSHE is a platform for all learning. Our curriculum builds on the requirements of the statutory guidance for Relationships Education and Health Education.
Our school culture is one where the whole school community work together to foster an environment of inclusivity. As children move through Ashby Fields Primary, we want them to explore their differences so that they feel comfortable being their true self. We want children to know who they are, feel proud to be who they are, and also know that they are accepted without judgement.
All children are taught from their first year in school that we are all different and we like that. In Early Years and Years 1 and 2, we use picture books where characters are different, and we show that they are friends and they play together. As children move up the school into Years 3, 4, 5 and 6, we continue to use age appropriate picture books to explore reasons why some people might feel left out. It is a fact that prejudice and discrimination exist, and children may experience it at some point in their lifetime.
Together, as parents, carers and teachers, we can prepare our children, give them the confidence to disagree when they hear prejudice, and show them that they are not alone. By using No Outsiders children build the language to challenge prejudice and show acceptance. Not only do they feel safe knowing they belong, they can also show and tell others that they too are safe: “I will be your friend. You belong here. You don’t have to change; there are no outsiders.
We work to ensure that our children understand that:
There are No Outsiders at Ashby Fields:
– Everyone is different
– We celebrate our differences
– We are all equal in our differences
– I can get along with you even if we are different
– We live in the UK, our British Values support this and the law says this too.