At Elsley, our ethos and values lie at the heart of our curriculum. Our four values of learning, sharing, achieving and respecting, guide our community in what we learn, and how we learn. We have outlined what the values mean to us.
Our curriculum is inclusive and carefully planned to ensure that it is broad and challenging. It is regularly reviewed to ensure that it remains relevant for our children and community, and for how we believe the world should be improved. This means, for example, our key texts are regularly reviewed for each year group to cover essential themes and represent inclusivity and diversity. We place particular emphasis on the importance of reading, as this is a fundamental skill enabling all other learning to take place.
The purpose of education at Elsley Primary School
At Elsley Primary, our understanding of the purpose of education recognises that there are different, often competing, philosophies. Our purpose of education acknowledges the work of Dylan Wiliam as well as Nelson Mandela. We aim to balance each of five philosophies as curriculum drivers, whilst recognising some inherent tension:
personal empowerment – Our Elsley curriculum aims to allow our children to take greater control of their own lives by guiding them to ‘deal critically and creatively with reality and discover how to participate in the transformation of their world.’
(Freire, cited by Wiliam, 2013)
cultural transmission Our Elsley curriculum aims to support the passing from one generation to the next of ‘the best that has been thought and known in the world.’
(Arnold, cited by Wiliam, 2013)
democratic citizenship Our Elsley curriculum recognises that education has a vital role in preparing citizens to make informed decisions about participation in democratic society. Democracy only works if those who are voting understand the choices they are given.
preparation for work and secondary school Dylan Wiliam focuses on education creating more productive workers, leading to increased economic prosperity for a country. As a primary school, our Elsley curriculum aims to prepare our pupils for secondary school, as well as wider life skills.
(adapted from Wiliam, 2013)
change the world We believe that, in addition to Dylan Wiliam’s four categories, there is a fifth dimension to our curriculum. We believe that our curriculum will contribute to improving the world by helping to shape people to be guided by ethics and respect for others, best summarised in the quotation of Nelson Mandela that ‘Education is the most powerful weapon to change the world.’ (Mandela, 1990)
Enhanced and hidden curriculum, including social action and climate change
Our curriculum at Elsley incorporates more than just the explicitly-taught curriculum subjects. We also have an enhanced curriculum which incorporates experiences, visits, workshops and celebrations. At Elsley, we firmly believe that the children should not just learn about topics, but that they should be actively contributing and making a difference to the world through social action and community work, as well as learning about, and helping to make changes which can combat climate change.
In addition, we recognise the concept of a ‘hidden curriculum.’ Every aspect of the ethos and culture which we have created at Elsley provides tacit learning experiences for the children. Whilst some of this is made explicit, such as behaviour expectations, much remains tacit, such as the positive and nurturing relationships, and the way that adults interact with each other as well as with the children. We recognise that all of this contributes to what and how our children learn.
Safeguarding within the Elsley Curriculum
Safeguarding children is a vital component within all aspects of our curriculum: from our ethos and values; within curriculum subjects; and through to our enhanced and hidden aspects of the curriculum. This means that in addition to robust and effective safeguarding systems, we create opportunities to prevent safeguarding risks by teaching children how to minimise and avoid risks, and how to react appropriately to safeguard themselves and others.
Further information about the school's curriculum can be obtained from
Ms Boamah, Deputy Headteacher or Mr Fraser, Wider Curriculum Leader
Phonics and early reading
We have updated our approach to teaching phonics based on the government's revised core criteria for effective systematic synthetic phonics teaching programmes. We use Little Wandle a complete systematic, synthetic phonics programme (SSP), validated by the Department for Education. Based on the original Letters and Sounds, but extensively revised to provide a complete teaching programme which meets all the expectations of the National Curriculum and prepares our children to go beyond the expectations of the Phonics Screening Check.
Year 1 Overviews and Knowledge Organisers
|Year 1 Curriculum Overview.pdf||Download|
|Year 1 autumn 1 - history.pdf||Download|
|Year 1 autumn 1 - science.pdf||Download|
|Year 1 autumn 2 - geography.pdf||Download|
|Year 1 autumn2 - science.pdf||Download|
|Year 1 spring 1 - history.pdf||Download|
|Year 1 spring 1 - science.pdf||Download|
|Year 1 spring 2 - geography.pdf||Download|
|Year 1 spring 2 - science.pdf||Download|
|Year 1 summer 1 - history.pdf||Download|