The pupils at our schools follow the National Curriculum (2014) which is expertly designed so that learning is mapped out, thoughtfully spaced and sequenced in ways that develop strong retainable schemas and reduce misconception. This Curriculum development gives opportunities for knowledge and skills to be embedded in children`s long term memory.
“The packets that organise information and make sense of our experiences are schemas, the building blocks of cognition”
Planned opportunities for revisiting, revising and retrieving information are built into the curriculum. The key learning, knowledge and skills in a subject are identified. Concepts are revisited and knowledge regularly retrieved using in-lesson AFL or proof of progress tests. This enables pupils to gain mastery in a subject.
Thematic work is used to frame the learning each term and are carefully planned across the school to ensure there are no longer term gaps before knowledge or skills are revisited.
Each school's coordinators in a MAT School Improvement Team focus on developing Curriculum that builds up children's knowledge and understanding incrementally over time.
Our ambitious Curriculum is rooted in the children's local communities. Themes based on their localities ensure learning is equitable and accessible to them, building their cultural capital.
Teachers will plan to ensure that learning builds on existing knowledge and skills. There are no limits on learning in the Trust and children are encouraged and enabled to not only achieve mastery but to gain a deeper level of knowledge and understanding wherever possible.
Alongside the traditional lessons that you might expect to be taught, we would also support the pupils to learn the skills of critical thinking, reasoning about problems, creating solutions to problems set in real life, confident speaking to others and working collaboratively.
We feel that our children's knowledge of the world around them begins with building their understanding of their place in the local community, town and wider local area. Themes for example would centre on local Geography and History such as The Shropshire Hills or Darwin as a famous historical figure. The local rivers and streams offering geographical features for local studies.
The curriculum is designed to ensure that pupils learn about significant local historical, geographical and economic features of our town, instilling a sense of pride in the community in which they live.
“Education for character is already integral to the work of excellent schools. In these schools there is no tension between a rigorous and stretching academic education on the one hand and outstanding wider personal development on the other. Indeed, these and other aspects of the school’s work all contribute to forming well-educated and rounded young adults ready to take their place in the world.”
Character Education Framework November 2019
Our unique Darwin Curriculum we have developed for our schools contributes to an outstanding, holistic personal development education for our children. The Curriculum sets out clear values, encompassing the British values that ensure they will develop into excellent citizens of the future. It incorporates our Darwin Values Award where children hone their skills and knowledge as they progress through school, building to an Darwin Award graduation night as they transition to Secondary school fully equipped for life.