The vision of the curriculum at Hillside Academy is to give all pupils the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in life. The Hillside Curriculum ethos aims to create a love of learning, through first hand experiences and stimulating hooks, that broaden horizons and pushes expected boundaries. Thus resulting in children becoming more confident of their skills, leading to a mastery skill set.
Hillside Academy aims to provide a curriculum that is broad, balanced, relevant and differentiated to provide for varied abilities. Barriers to learning are removed and we provide suitable learning challenges that respond to diverse needs. This encompasses a variety of exciting, first-hand experiences to enable children to acquire appropriate skills, knowledge and understanding preparing them for today’s world. Through the provision of a stimulating environment, children will develop to their full potential academically, socially and physically.
Our curriculum is designed with the intent:
- That our curriculum should educate children about their role within the community and the positive impact they can have on their own lives and those around them. Therefore our curriculum is built upon a foundation which aims to develop a strong sense of self, of the local and wider history.
- That our children should have access to as many opportunities as possible so that they develop a broad knowledge and understanding of the world and what is possible. We tell our children to aim high- they are the future and they can make a difference.
- That our children should be exposed to activities and situations where they develop a broad range of skills, an understanding of diversity and tolerance. Team working is a vital skill as is the confidence to stand proud – our curriculum aims to develop both of these aspects.
- Our curriculum is underpinned by Astrea’s Core Values (Responsibility and Leadership, Enjoyment and Innovation, Aspiration and Development, Collaboration and Inclusion and Honesty and Integrity) and these are taught on their own and through other areas of the curriculum, including assemblies. The spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of our pupils and their understanding of the core values of our society are woven throughout the curriculum. Each week at our Hillside Shoe assembly we highlight children who have demonstrated their understanding of these values.
- All subject leaders are given training and opportunities to keep developing their own subject knowledge, skills and understanding so they can support curriculum development and their colleagues throughout the school.
Theme weeks, whole school activities and opportunities within and outside school all enrich and develop the children’s learning. After school clubs and events extend these opportunities further. Additional whole school programmes and approaches support quality teaching and learning.
Our curriculum is informed by educational research into effective teaching practices, cognition learning and how knowledge and understanding develops. Underpinned by our school values our academic curriculum uses either the EYFS or the National Curriculum for the basis for content and expectations.
- Subjects are taught discreetly with the majority of content being taught discreetly. There may be occasions where it is appropriate for some content to be taught with cross-curricular link
- The school is also developing areas of the curriculum which aim to extend pupils learning further for example the Astrea Promise, the Forest School ethos, Spanish and Enterprise.
- An annual plan is written with 3 themes per year allowing for staff and children to look at the theme in depth. Subjects are taught through other subjects when it is appropriate to do so for example reading skills as part of a history theme.
- In order to ensure effective progression of subjects across the primary phase our Curriculum Teams are developing skill/knowledge progression maps for all subjects over the year.
- Termly plans are created and used as leaflets for parents. These highlight key skills, knowledge and vocabulary which the children will learn as part of the theme. These are placed on our website.
The framework for the children’s learning is provided by the National Curriculum which sets out the core subjects of Maths, English and Science along with ICT, PE, History, Geography, Design and Technology, Art, Music, Religious Education and MFL. We also teach Citizenship, Personal, Social and Health Education attaching great importance to the development of social skills. We use AET planning resources for the teaching of mathematics, The Literacy Tree planning resources for writing and the Letters and Sounds document for the teaching of phonics and early reading.The curriculum encourages children to develop self-discipline and responsibility and to work collaboratively with others.
An overview of the full year’s curricular offer can be found here:
Whole School Curriculum– Autumn Term
We use rigorous triangulated monitoring throughout the year to evaluate the effectiveness and impact of the curriculum design. Alongside senior leadership and middle leadership, carefully crafted curriculum teams monitor individual subjects: reviewing learning, evaluating pupil voice, providing individual feedback to move practice forward, celebrating positives and highlighting areas of development. Learning is measured through careful analysis of how knowledge is retained and understood and the application of skills across the curriculum;
We will use the following impact statements to evaluate the effectiveness of curriculum design:
- Children make progress and attain in line with or better than national expectations. They are given opportunities to achieve the greater depth standard. Assessment documents show that knowledge and skills are embedded throughout the curriculum.
- A broad curriculum, based on knowledge of the world around them and experiences through sport, music, drama and co-curricular enrichment will enrich pupil’s lives, build cultural capital and instil a love of learning.
- Pupils will have high expectations of themselves and a drive for excellence. They will learn how to utilise their knowledge and ideas. Pupils will have the necessary dispositions, character and academic qualifications to live a life fill of choice and opportunity.
- Pupils will learn to value, family, community, their contribution to the wider world and the environment. They will make positive contributions to the life of the school and those around them.