The curriculum

Our children benefit from an exciting and engaging curriculum which has been developed to ensure that learning engages children through memorable experiences, is sequenced in a logical and progressive way and is built upon a range of high quality children’s texts.  

We use Cornerstones as the basis on which we have developed a clear, progressive structure for History, Geography and Science.  Each topic has a high quality linked text, three planned writing outcomes, key significant figures that children meet and a carefully planned equality and diversity thread running through all learning. Topics follow a four part model of Engage, Develop, Innovate and Express.  These stages are designed to develop and deepen children’s knowledge and understanding. Children are engaged in topic content, knowledge, understanding and skills are taught and developed, children use what they have learnt in a new context and lastly there is an opportunity to express all that has been learnt.  DT, Computing, RE, PSHE, PE and Art are all taught through their own bespoke curriculum which links, where appropriate to the overarching topic. 

This approach ensures that teachers are provided with a coherently planned curriculum that is sequenced to ensure cumulative knowledge and skills.  This in turn ensures that children develop a depth of knowledge which enables them to apply their thinking and, in the longer term, remember the content they have been taught and connect new knowledge with existing knowledge. 

At The Mead Academy Trust subject leaders and teachers think about the curriculum at three levels.  The first is the intended curriculum – the knowledge and skills that we deem essential for our children to leave our school with at the end of Year 6. This is set out meticulously by the Curriculum Team, made up of Senior Leaders from across our three schools, in our Curriculum Map.  Subject Teams then have the responsibility to ensure depth and quality of knowledge and understanding for their subject.  They are the ‘experts’ in their subject, advocate, understand and measure the impact of children’s learning and support subject knowledge for teachers. 

The next level is the implemented curriculum, resources that teachers use to deliver the curriculum.  Examples include core approaches such as Read Write Inc, knowledge organisers, key vocabulary and lessons and resources carefully created for each year group. 

The third level is the enacted curriculum, where our talented and skilled teachers bring the curriculum to life in a way that is meaningful, bespoke to the children they know so well and responsive to both formative and summative assessment. Teachers make refined decisions about what is fundamental to grasp of the subject they are teaching and plan sequences of learning to address these key concepts, typical misconceptions, and the most compelling routes/sequences to enable mastery. 

Our Curriculum Map and topics ensure that learning has a context, with rich learning opportunities that link to and build upon previous learning to enable children to develop transferable knowledge and skills.  

Ensuring the impact of our curriculum on the children is crucial, in terms of progress and attainment as well as in terms of cultural capital. We take full advantage of our local area and the wider region, promote equalities and diversity and significant individuals in all topics and share our learning with purpose wherever possible.   

We are confident that we offer a broad and balanced curriculum to all pupils. It provides the chance for all pupils to encounter and understand the very best that has been thought, said, written, sung, danced, made and played. We believe that this will inspire pupils to go on and excel in whatever they choose in their future.

Our approach to the curriculum has been created jointly by our schools within the context of our development over time.  As our Trust grows, we will seek to explore synergies and strengths that individual schools bring to ensure continual development and improvement.  The commonality and alignment of our current approach enables high quality joint training and professional learning opportunities and has been proven to reduce workload for our staff.   

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