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Curriculum

Our curriculum is designed to enable children to understand their place in the world, which they exploit because of a developed sense of self and agency that is built on an ability to seek meaning and make connections based on evolving understanding secured through a foundation of knowledge and skills.

The underpinning Intent of the Cabot Learning Federation 3-19 Curriculum

Curriculum

Our Curriculum

Artists

Designers

Geographers

Historians

Mathematics

MFL

Musicians

PE

Reader

Scientists

Writer

At Minerva Primary Academy we have an immersive curriculum where children learn within different ‘States of being’. This includes learning such as Citizens, Scientists, Artists, Historians and Authors. Each unit includes children; using first-hand experiences, aspirational knowledge and developing skills to build upon prior understanding and be the foundation of future learning. The aim is for each unit to be celebrated, these include exhibitions, presentations, assemblies and display.

Learning at Minerva Primary Academy

Whilst we use the National Curriculum 2014 as a frame of reference, we are committed to providing further opportunities:

Learners are encouraged to develop their learning dispositions that are called ‘Effective Lifelong Learning Inventory’ (ELLI) We praise and celebrate these dispositions in class and through our weekly assembly. We focus on the following characters below

The Owl who takes responsibility for themselves and is safe, respectful and ready to learn.

The Butterfly who sees learning as a lifelong process and gains pleasure and self-esteem from expanding their ability to learn.

The Starling who is aware of their thoughts, feelings and emotions as a learner and they demonstrate their bounce back ability after setbacks.

The Meerkat shows an interest, is engaged with and takes ownership in their learning.

The Phoenix is willing to take risks, be creative, play with ideas and use their imagination.

The Spider who looks for links and makes sense of their learning in and out of school to help build coherence.

The Bee who can learn in a variety of ways – independently, with a partner or in a group.

In our early years’ foundation stage, they start by learning and using the dispositions of

  • Self-agency like the owl
  • Positive learner relationships like the bee
  • Active curiosity being engaged with learning like the meerkat

Phonics, reading and spelling

At Minerva Primary Academy, we teach and celebrate reading across all years and see it as one of the main foundations in a child’s learning. In addition to this, we see that both fluency and enjoyment in reading are an integral part of a child’s academic progress and success. We value reading as a key life skill and are dedicated to enabling our pupils to become lifelong readers. At Minerva Primary Academy it is our intention that our reading curriculum covers the key skills needed to become a great reader.

We follow ‘Letters and Sounds’ to teach phonics. It aims to build children’s speaking and listening skills in their own right as well as to prepare children for learning to read by developing their phonic knowledge and skills. It sets out a detailed and systematic programme for teaching phonic skills for children starting by the age of five, with the aim of them becoming fluent readers by age seven. Letters and sounds sessions take place in reception, year 1 and year 2.

We put a high level of thought into the range of texts our children read, both within whole class reading sessions and as independent readers, as our school encourages the use of a wide range of exciting and interesting vocabulary to develop our children’s understanding and communication skills. The curriculum aims to provide reading opportunities linked to states of being in all year groups.

Children who need extra help with reading may be offered additional support from our reading intervention teacher in order to help them make progress quickly.

We use No Nonsense Spelling programme. This is designed to specifically meet the needs of the National Curriculum in a manageable and flexible way. The programme is used from year 2 to year 6 within dedicated lessons.

Mathematics

Across our school, we use mathematics resources from the national centre for excellence in the teaching of mathematics (NCETM). It provides coherent sequencing for the primary maths curriculum.

In addition, within our early years and Key stage one we follow mastering number. We want all children to secure firm foundations in the development of good number sense. The aim is for all children will leave KS1 with fluency in calculation and a confidence and flexibility with number.

Remote and Blended Learning

Remote and Blended Learning Guidance

Home Learning at MPA

At Minerva Primary Academy we believe that homework is an opportunity to develop to consolidate their learning and to develop the study skills necessary for Secondary school and Further Education.

Throughout their time at Minerva, children will have homework which will be appropriate for their age and stage of learning.  Through completing tasks and meeting deadlines, children will develop their accountability and organisation skills.  This is developing their ‘Self Agency’ ELLI skill like the Owl.  Homework will also provide opportunities to recall knowledge and practise skills to refine and develop fluency. This is developing their ‘Making meaning’ ELLI skill like the Spider.

Expectations for quantity and content 

Research shows that short and regular tasks are most effective for having an impact on learning in school.  The tasks provided should be completed independently by the child but parents can support by encouraging their child to explain the learning.  Each task should take a short amount of time to complete and will be familiar to the child. There will be an optional suggestion for how each task could be extended.

Daily reading practice is essential to help develop fluency.  When a child is able to decode and blend independently they will be assigned books via Bug club and physically so that they can practice with an adult at home.  The books assigned will allow them to become fluent and therefore should not be a struggle for them.  The child will have the same book for the week so it can be read several time to develop fluency and understanding so they can retell the story or key facts. If a child is not yet able to decode and blend independently, regardless of age and year group, they will be provided with a high quality text that they can share with an adult at home.

For Year 2 upwards, homework tasks will be set via Assignments on Teams. This is to support the children in preparation for their transition to Secondary school.  This will also support the children to develop independence with their computing skills.  Therefore there will only be paper copies for children who do not have access to IT at home.  Tasks will provide children with an opportunity to recall and revisit prior learning.  This might be learning from that week, term, school year or key stage.

QuantityExamples of the type of task
Pre school1.      Daily readingAn adult to share a book with a child daily.
Reception1.      Daily reading·        Establish the habit of reading practice every day for 5 – 10 minutes.  This may include: sharing a book with an adult and discussing the content, practising sight reading of key words, the child reading to an adult, the adult sharing new vocabulary.
Year 11.      Daily reading

2.      1×10 min task per week

·        Daily reading practice where your child reads to you. 

·        Spelling or vocabulary practice.

·        Maths task to develop fluency.

·        Recall of knowledge based on Knowledge Organiser.

Year 21.      Daily reading

2.      1×10 min task per week

·        Daily reading practice. 

·        Spelling, vocabulary or comprehension practice.

·        Maths task to develop fluency.

·        Recall of knowledge based on Knowledge Organiser.

Year 31.      Daily reading

2.      2×10 mins task per week

·        Daily reading practice using Bug club or levelled reading book.

·        Spelling, vocabulary or comprehension practice.

·        Maths task to develop fluency – focus on times tables.

·        Recall of knowledge based on Knowledge Organiser.

Year 41.      Daily reading

2.      2×10 mins task per week

·        Daily reading practice. 

·        Spelling, vocabulary or comprehension practice.

·        Maths task to develop fluency – focus on times tables.

·        Recall of knowledge based on Knowledge Organiser.

Year 5Daily reading

2×15 min tasks per week

·        Daily reading practice. 

·        Handwriting, spelling, vocabulary or comprehension practice.

·        Maths task to develop fluency – focus on written calculations

·        Recall of knowledge based on Knowledge Organiser.

Year 6Daily reading

2×15 min tasks per week

·        Daily reading practice. 

·        Handwriting, spelling, vocabulary or comprehension practice.

·        Maths task to develop fluency – focus on written calculations

·        Recall of knowledge based on Knowledge Organiser.

Timescale 

All tasks will be given out on a Thursday and they should be returned to school by the following Wednesday.  This will give 6 days to complete any piece of home learning.  If the timing is different this will be indicated on the task. There is the expectation that homework is completed. By handing out on a Thursday it allows Friday for any questions from children or parents to be followed up.

Feedback

Teachers will review Reading Records (EYFS, Year 1 and Year 2) and Bug club (whole school) on a regular basis to monitor how often children are practising their reading at home. For Year 1 children, their one weekly written task will be provided on paper and this will be returned to school and glued in to the relevant exercise book e.g. if it was phonics practice it will go in the Authors book, if it is maths then it will go in the Maths exercise book. For children in Year 2 upwards, teachers will monitor the homework by looking at the assignments that have been submitted.  The teacher will not give individual feedback but they will use the submitted homework to inform the teaching and learning in school and future homework tasks.

Knowledge Organisers

At MPA we use Knowledge Organisers (KOs) to share the key concepts and key knowledge (facts, vocabulary, images) with the children. They have a copy in their exercise books and together as a class they create a large Knowledge Organiser on a display board as they learn through a unit. When a Year Group starts a new unit, we send home a paper copy of the knowledge organiser so that you can discuss the learning with your child and so they can use it to support their homework. This is an example of a Year 3 Knowledge Organiser:

Example of Year 3 Knowledge Organiser

You may want to glue these in to the Orange Home Learning books that were sent home at the start of the school year so you can refer back to prior learning.

At the end of each day, we review and recap learning, so the children are familiar with revisiting a knowledge organiser from a previous unit to help them to remember the key concepts and make links between their learning (Spider – ELLI)

EDI Books

Minerva Primary Academy holds a long and deep commitment to welcoming and promoting equality, diversity and inclusion.  This is demonstrated through our curriculum and culture on a day to day basis. Our team uses the MPA curriculum to plan learning experiences which support our EDI agenda which are relevant to our families and community.

Whilst our curriculum provides many purposeful opportunities we value the use of high-quality texts to explicitly teach about protected characteristic in an age appropriate.

No Outsiders Book List

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