The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum is used to plan for the children’s learning. The curriculum is based on the seven areas of learning:
Communication and Language
Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Understanding the World
Expressive Arts and Design
It is mainly delivered through play and practical activities. Well planned play, both indoors and outdoors, is a key way in which young children learn with enjoyment and challenge. We consider that the curriculum for the Early Years Foundation Stage underpins all future learning and leads towards the National Curriculum which is started in Year 1 or earlier if the children have exceeded the Early Years Learning Goals.
Key Stage 1 and 2
Every pupil will follow the New National Curriculum programmes of study in the following subjects:
English - In KS1 we follow the Letters and Sounds Scheme of Work for Phonics
French in KS2 (Club in Year 2)
At the start of every new term parents will be informed of what areas of the curriculum will be studied and how best parents can help to work in partnership with the school to maximise every child’s potential.
Family Life Education
At St Mary’s we see sex education as part of the wider educational experience rather than sex instruction and it is taught in the context of family life.
The school accepts the guidelines for Catholic Primary Schools set out by the Maryvale Catechetical Centre. Sex education is developed gradually through the school within the R.E. and P.S.H.E. programme as well as within topic work.
The school uses the ‘All that I am’ resource material in Years 5 and 6, which focuses on personal, social and spiritual education. Alongside this the ‘Journey in Love’ resource is used from Nursery to Year 6 with 5 lessons focusing on physical, social, emotional, intellectual and spiritual development. It is set firmly within Catholic teaching and is produced by the Diocesan Department of Religious Education. A key theme is the creative love of God for each and every individual and His working in and through all our relationships. This is used to support and enhance all RE and PSHE work in Years 5 and 6 and as a valuable tool to prepare children for specific sex education in Year 6. The organisation ‘Life’ show a video and teach the children about the growth of the baby in the womb before birth. There is an opportunity for discussion, questions and answers.
The Religious Education Curriculum follows the Diocesan RE Strategy and Curriculum Directory for Catholic Schools. The doctrine is taught in accordance with the teachings of the Catholic Church. Religious Education lessons account for at least 10% of curriculum time. Respect for other faiths and cultures are also part of our mission.
Within St. Mary’s School, the religious education provided is not wholly confined to teaching/learning situations found in RE lessons. The message and spirit of the Gospel is actively approached and reflected upon throughout the curriculum and all areas of school life.
Preparation for the Sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Communion takes place in Year 3 and in Year 6 for Confirmation. It is through a strong partnership with parents that we lead children closer to God our Father through the Sacraments.
School Masses, daily prayers and assemblies are central to our worship and deepen the children’s experience of Almighty God through regular prayer and the development of a spiritual life. The school is an integral part of the Parish Community. Throughout the liturgical year we come together to celebrate important feasts. All of our parents and children are most welcome to share our various masses and services.