To meet the requirements of the National Curriculum, all classes in Key Stage 2 follow some set, pre-planned topics. The National Curriculum sets out the minimum content. At Birchwood Junior School, we make sure children learn lots of additional skills, knowledge and understanding.
▸ we offer a range of opportunities (*fee paying) to learn a musical instrument – these extra-curricular activities go beyond the statutory requirements.
▸ if a class or group show an interest in a particular subject, teachers will try to include this in the school year – a recent Year 6 class wanted to learn more about Tim Peake's adventure to space.
▸ current local/national or international events can provide a great basis for learning – the Olympics or the reconstruction of the Magna Carta.
▸ importantly, higher attaining children are not restricted by the National Curriculum - there are activities that children can participate in that 'master' the learning skills.
Our Curriculum Aims
As based within our school aims and ethos, at Birchwood Junior School we believe that all children should be successful and their learning should prepare them for their future. We encourage children to become life-long learners.
How We Deliver Our Curriculum
We prefer to set start and end dates for most of our topics, and we do this by planning topics with a specified length ('Big Topics' last for seven to eight weeks, for example). This is so that we can ensure a broad and balanced curriculum – often with a themed launch "Wow Factor" – and end at the same time – with some sort of reflective activity to share learning with others.
Learning From Others
Occasionally children learn with children from other classes or different members of staff. For example, older children might support younger children (under supervision) in reading or PE games. Not only does this help younger children to acquire new skills, but older children’s social skills and self-esteem can improve, too. We also make use of many visitors to school who have particular skills or interests, especially in drama and PE. Children (and teachers!) enjoy drama within many topics, typically delivered by specialists in their field. It acts as a powerful, motivating vehicle for all learning and has a positive impact on standards in reading and writing as well as topic work. Our P.E leader, works hard to use PE money to invite lots of specialist coaches and teachers to enhance PE activities which can sometimes link with topics.Art and Design British Values Computing Design & Technology English Humanities (Geography & History) Languages Maths Music P.E. Phonics Religious Education Science