Our curriculum is based around the National Curriculum 2014.
The National Curriculum is a set of subjects and standards used by all primary schools in England so that all children learn the same things. It covers what subjects are taught and the standards children should reach in each subject. From September 2014 a new National Curriculum has been delivered in all Primary Schools. Follow this link to the Department of Education website to see the full description of what children are expected to learn during their time in school.
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What does the curriculum look like at Lythe School?
Our school curriculum is the environment in which we operate – it encompasses the National Curriculum plus all the other things that are taught and experienced at Lythe School. It serves our children and the communities from which they come and helps us live out our Vision Statement and Mission Statement.
Our planning started with extensive discussions about how our vision would be lived out through our curriculum and you can see our intent for each subject of the curriculum by clicking here – this lays out why these subjects are important for the children at our school and how we envisage the subjects helping children flourish in every way.
As a small school with mixed year groups, we need to ensure that we have progression and continuity in all subjects. We are therefore very pleased to be a member of the Esk Valley Alliance, an association of similar schools who have joined together to produce a collaborative four-year rolling programme of subject planning, specifically designed to meet the challenges of small classes and mixed age groups.
An important part of this curriculum planning is the professional development of teachers. We encourage and support teachers to be as free as possible to use their own experiences and professional skills – high quality teaching, and teacher professional development, is essential to this and part of the school development plan.
As part of our recovery from the lockdown years, we have planned to do fewer things in greater depth so that we have the greatest impact on learning: children will know and understand things and be able to apply them.
We depart from the Esk Valley Alliance curriculum for some subjects, which can be seen by clicking on the menus below.
Art and Design
Design and Technology
Early Years - Nursery and Reception
Children in Nursery and Reception follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) Statutory Framework.
How do we know our provision is effective?
All these aspects are explicitly monitored and evidence collected by all staff. Our Foundation Governors are responsible for evaluating the impact of our provision, including collecting the views of chil. This shows how our SMSC and British Values provision is embedded across the curriculum and allows us to identify areas for development.
ICT / Computer
Maths is taught using the White Rose Maths scheme of work and resources – this is a Mastery approach, which means that children have time to think deeply about maths concepts to develop a true understanding, rather than learning rote procedures.
Modern Foreign Languages
Personal ,Social, Health, & Citizenship Education (PSHCE)
PHSE We use the PHSE Scheme of work published by the PHSE Association, taking a thematic approach to suit our mixed-age classes. Teaching and assessment take place as discrete lessons as well as through subjects such as science (topics such as puberty are covered in both PHSE and as part of the science curriculum). RSE has been compulsory from September 2021 and our policy can be seen by clicking here.
Phonics and Reading at Lythe School
The new National Curriculum ensures that all children are taught phonics systematically and Lythe School uses the Read Write Inc. programme of study to introduce sounds and letter formation. This starts by teaching children just one way of reading and spelling the English sounds that make up words; they then move on to reading books that are carefully matched to the spelling sounds that they have just been taught. When children are confident with this, they then learn more ways to spell the different sounds. Children learn a good handwriting style and are encouraged to use their skills to have a go at spelling longer words. There are some great videos for parents on the Read Write Inc. website which describe ways of helping your child at home.
All children undertake the national phonics screening check in Year 1. The purpose of this is to check whether pupils have learned phonic skills as above to an appropriate standard, and to identify any children who need extra help to improve their phonics skills. Read Write Inc. materials are used in Year 2 to help children make accelerated progress where needed.
Once children have completed the Read Write Inc programme they move into Guided Reading in their class – this may be a whole-class or small group approach. Teaching focuses on developing really sound phonic decoding and fluency as an essential basis for good comprehension and teachers ensure that the children have good “reading mileage” – this means that they spend as long as possible each day actively reading words, both in Reading lessons and across the curriculum. Knowledge of vocabulary and grammar are used to support both reading and writing.
Children select reading books from banded scheme books to help them find books with suitable vocabulary and content that they can use their developing phonics skills to enjoy independently or practise reading with adult support. They are also encouraged to take any book from the library shelves to enjoy – we do not restrict choices as being “too hard” or “too easy,” but encourage children to use their developing skills to tackle these, and families to share and enjoy these books with their children.
RE is an important part of helping every child to flourish and to live life in all its fullness. (John 10:10). It helps educate for dignity and respect, encouraging all to live well together. It is taught at Lythe using the North Yorkshire Agreed Syllabus and using a two-year rolling programme.
Reporting your child's progress
Years 1 -6: Parents’ consultation evenings are held three times a year and you will be informed of your child’s progress towards their targets. At the end of Year 2 and Year 6 children will take part in national SATs tests in reading, writing and maths (writing is assessed internally by the teacher and may be moderated externally), which show their achievement compared to national expectations, along with the progress they have made during their time in school.
Early Years: Children in EYFS (Acorn Class) are continuously assessed, and progress in all aspects of your child’s development is reported regularly and frequently using the Tapestry online platform, which encourages parents and teachers to work in harmony to share information and celebrate achievement. We use In The Moment Planning, which allows staff to put a strong focus on a selected number of children each week. Parents are invited to share additional information before their child’s focus week, and to attend a consultation meeting at the end of the week to discuss.
We keep you up to date with what is happening in classes via our weekly school newsletter, and further information about what is being taught in each year group each term can be obtained by contacting your child’s teacher.
SMSC and British Values
At Lythe, SMSC development is a cornerstone of our teaching and learning, and British values are promoted in much of what we do. This includes work in Collective Worship, Religious Education lesson, our PHSE learning as well as different aspects which are embedded across the curriculum. British values are integral to behaviour expectations and the vision we have for all our pupils .
As a school, we value and celebrate being part of Britain. In general terms, this means that we celebrate traditions (such as customs in the course of the year) for example, Harvest festival during the autumn term, and Christmas events in December including a British Pantomime! We also value and celebrate national events, including welcoming professional athletes following the Olympic Games, and following the recent Tour de Yorkshire; our World Book Day celebrations this year encourage children to think about British authors and illustrators.
Democracy is an integral part of our provision: children vote for representatives for the Ethos Group and for other issues that affect them in school. Pupil Voice surveys take note of children’s views and these are used to contribute to school improvement, for example when reviewing the Behaviour policy.
The rule of law is promoted through the application of our Behaviour policy and the implementation of our three Golden Rules (Be Kind, Be Safe, Be Respectful) – children are involved in deciding what this will look like in school, and are encouraged to take responsibility for making good choices. We have good links with our local community police officer and other authorities such as the beach lifeguards and the local construction company who visit to explain why we follow certain rules. E-Safety is taught discretely throughout the school and children learn about the some of the laws involved, for example copyright.
Individual liberty is promoted: children know that they have the right to feel safe and are able to report concerns. We use the language of choice when discussing learning or behaviour with children end encourage children to make their own choices about participating in activities and clubs with active encouragement to overcome stereotypes, for example surrounding gender or our rural location. Children are encouraged to take responsibility and make real decisions, for example for organising Collective Worship and leading their own clubs and activities.
Our whole school ethos embodies mutual respect and positive relationships are modelled and encouraged. Children’s achievements are celebrated in a weekly achievement assembly and our high level of participation in sports makes respectful behaviour towards other competitors a high priority. Our fund-raising activities, from supporting the local food bank to international refugees, show understanding and respect for the needs different groups in society, and Collective Worship actively encourage children to empathise with each other and understand that we are all different but all equally valuable. Our Forest Schools work builds respect for the natural environment and encourages children to share their strengths to support others.
Tolerance of others is promoted through our RE syllabus which gives a broad and balanced view of other faiths. Different cultures are celebrated through work in subjects such as art, history and geography, and children celebrate festivals such as Chinese New Year and Diwali. A link has been made with a muslim teacher which is being developed into a long-term relationship to help children gain real insight into the lives of muslim families.
British values are promoted in Early Years: children are taught the difference between right and wrong and are encouraged to make choices about activities and issues that affect them. Children learn about people who help us, including those who uphold rules and laws, and about festivals from other cultures. Their curriculum strives to ensure that children understand they are part of a much wider world.
As well as actively promoting British values, we would actively challenge pupils, staff or parents expressing opinions contrary to fundamental British values, including ‘extremist’ views and have a clear procedure displayed for dealing with concerns. Any visitors to the school are investigated prior to their visit and their views discussed in line with our Visitors’ Policy.