Curriculum Intent at St. Mark’s
Here at St. Mark’s we pride ourselves in providing all our children with a broad and balanced curriculum which is engaging, exciting and varied. All subjects are taught specifically and discretely in order to ensure full coverage of the national curriculum objectives in each area. Some rotation of subjects occurs each term, but all key strands are taught in all subjects over the course of each academic year. Where possible, lessons are practical with use of resources to aid understanding and help make learning fun and memorable. We also like to link learning with real life situations to give it more purpose, which increases motivation.
As a Catholic school, RE and our faith is extremely important to us. It is considered a core subject alongside maths and English. Maths and English lessons are delivered daily, as well as aspects of RE which are part of our routines, including prayers and assemblies, in addition to the two separate, weekly RE lessons.
Beyond the core curriculum are all of the non-core subjects which enable our children to experience a wide range of enriching activities. These subjects consist of science, PE, computing, history, geography, music, art, D&T, PSHE and citizenship, and our chosen language – French. Each subject has its designated subject leader who strives to continually improve the provision offered in their subject area.
In order to enhance each subject and help bring the curriculum to life, we regularly go out on educational visits or work alongside outside providers in order to offer unique experiences on site. We believe these special occasions are crucial to add enjoyment and create long-lasting learning and memories.
Our recent visits have included an over-night residential which covers the ‘outdoor and adventurous activities’ aspect of the PE curriculum, and a science day at a local secondary school to give children a taste of the equipment and sort of experiments they are able to perform once they get to ‘big school’.
On site, we have enjoyed visits from artists, authors, musicians, historians and scientists. Amongst our most memorable and enjoyable days have been the African drumming and International Dance Festival workshops. Such special days are imperative to keep our children motivated so that they learn more and remember more.
Our Approach to the Curriculum
In order to ensure full coverage of the curriculum in all areas, we operate a two-week timetable. This provides us with flexibility and allows classes to get really into each unit and topic, often covering the same subject for a full afternoon, rather than having periods of transition between subjects, which can sometimes disturb the flow.
Maths, English and RE are prioritised on the curriculum, with other subjects working around them. In the Early Years, KS1 and sometimes lower KS2 as well, we have both Read Write Inc for reading and phonics and Number Sense for maths in operation daily in order to build fluency in these crucial areas.
In terms of non-core subjects, we rotate each half term so that three units are covered in every subject over the course of each academic year. We sometimes have themed ‘inspirational’ days or events to boost the profile of certain subjects and to ensure our children have exciting and memorable experiences in every area of the curriculum.
All subjects have been carefully mapped out by subject leaders, with children given opportunities to link units and build upon the knowledge they’ve gained previously. Ultimately, by providing an exciting and varied curriculum which has been carefully mapped out, it means our children ‘know more and remember more’ in all areas.
How to Find Out More
Please see our curriculum overviews at the bottom of this page, which show coverage of the curriculum each term in every class. However, if you wish to know more, there are several ways of doing so. Firstly, the ‘Subject Information’ section of the website provides detailed outlines of each individual subject. Beyond this, Class Dojo provides lots of information, updates and photos so that you can see what our children get up to on a daily basis. At the start of each academic year, each class teacher hosts a welcome meeting for parents to speak about the year ahead and outline what to expect.
If you still require further information regarding our curriculum, please use the Contact Us page of this website or get in touch with your class teacher directly.