The Curriculum

The School teaches the National Curriculum, and operates three phases. These are the Early Years Foundation Stage (ages 3-5).  Key Stage 1 (ages 5-7) and Key Stage 2 (ages 7-11). Further information about the National Curriculum may be found at https://www.gov.uk/national-curriculum.

In 2013 the previous coalition government announced plans to overhaul the National Curriculum. For most children, these changes took effect from September 2014. Although the new curriculum is intended to be more challenging, the content is actually slimmer than the current curriculum, focusing on essential core subject knowledge and skills such as essay writing and computer programming.

Assessment

As part of the reforms to the national curriculum, the previous requirement to provide “levels” to quantify children’s attainment and progress were removed from September 2014. Levels were not being banned, per se, but will not be updated to reflect the new national curriculum and are no longer used to report the results of national curriculum tests. Working with the local authority we adopted, from September 2015, the Herts for Learning assessment system. (Further information is available in the School’s Assessment policy.)

Further information, from an external website, specifically designed for parents, may be found here.

How the School assesses children’s attainment and progress may be found here.

Year 3 working

What are the main changes to the curriculum?

Subject

What’s new?

English

  • Stronger emphasis on vocabulary development, grammar, punctuation and spelling (for example, the use of commas and apostrophes will be taught in Key Stage 1)

  • Handwriting– not currently assessed under the national curriculum – is expected to be fluent, legible and speedy

  • Spoken English has a greater emphasis, with children to be taught debating and presenting skills.

Maths

  • Five-year-olds will be expected to learn to count up to 100 (compared to 20 under the current curriculum) and learn number bonds to 20 (currently up to 10)

  • Simple fractions (1/4 and 1/2) will be taught from Key Stage 1, and by the end of primary school, children should be able to convert decimal fractions to simple fractions (e.g. 0.375 = 3/8)

  • By the age of nine, children will be expected to know times tables up to 12×12 (currently 10×10 by the end of primary school)

  • Calculators will not be introduced until near the end of Key Stage 2, to encourage mental arithmetic

Science

  • Strong focus on scientific knowledge and language, rather than understanding the nature and methods of science in abstract terms

  • Evolution will be taught in primary schools for the first time

  • Non-core subjects like caring for animals will be replaced by topics like the human circulatory system

Design and

Technology

  • Afforded greater importance under the new curriculum, setting children on the path to becoming the designers and engineers of the future

  • More sophisticated use of design equipment, such as electronics and robotics

  • In Key Stage 2, children will learn about how key events and individuals in design and technology have shaped the world

ICT

  • Computing replaces Information and Communication Technology (ICT), with a greater focus on programming rather than on operating programs

  • From age five, children will learn to write and test simple programs, and to organise, store and retrieve data

  • From seven, they will be taught to understand computer networks, including the internet

  • Internet safety – currently only taught from 11-16 – will be taught in primary schools

Languages

  • Currently not statutory, a modern foreign language or ancient language (Latin or Greek) will be mandatory in Key Stage 2. At West Wimbledon Primary School, this will be French.

  • Children will be expected to demonstrate competence in basic grammar and accurate pronunciation and to converse, present, read and write in the language

Home Links documents

Each term we produce, and then send home, a Home Links documents which outlines in more detail the curriculum each year group will follow, providing specific details about literacy and numeracy, the homework opportunities, any planned trips and information about PE.

Please read this half term’s plans, here.