Our curriculum

The National Curriculum is a set of subjects and standards used by schools so children learn the same things. Academies do not have to follow the National Curriculum but must teach a broad and balanced curriculum including English, Maths and Science, as well as Religious Education.
Key Stages

The curriculum is organised into blocks of years called ‘Key Stages’ (KS). At the end of each Key Stage, your child’s teacher will formally assess their performance to measure your child’s progress.

Reading

Both in school at home, we want to build a culture of reading for pleasure and purpose. Our approach to reading involves daily sessions incorporating clear adult modelling prior to the children applying these skills through partner work and independent reading. Children deepen their understanding of the challenging texts they read through the systematic use of a series of strategies and language stems. Our approach encompasses the key principles of effective reading provision and fully meets the requirements of the National Curriculum by creating deep understanding of texts, developing oracy around reading and increasing children’s breadth of reading.

We deliver our reading programme through the Lion Academy Trust reading strategy which is a tried and tested programme that has led to the best outcomes across our schools irrespective of context.

Phonics

For children in the early stages of reading, the school follows the 'Letters and Sounds' Programme.  Click here for more information on the programme. 

Writing

The teaching of English is at the heart of curriculum provision at Maple Grove Primary. Children learn how to read, write and spell in Literacy and Phonics lessons every morning. If required, extra support is provided to pupils through intervention groups in the afternoons.

Our writing lessons are 'skills-based' and are carefully differentiated to meet the needs of all learners. A love of writing is encouraged through engaging and lively texts and stories. We aim to provide our pupils with opportunities to develop core communication skills in every lesson, regardless of the subject. Progress and attainment in writing at Maple Grove is achieved through carefully tailored, high-quality lessons and resources.

We deliver our writing programme through the Lion Academy Trust writing strategy which again is a tried and tested programme that has led to the best outcomes across our schools irrespective of context.

Lion Academy Trust was ranked 3rd in the country for writing in 2017-2018, and is one of three MATs in the country that have been placed in the top 20 of MATs for combined progress.

Maths

Children at Maple Grove learn Maths as a discrete subject for an hour a day, as well as in a cross-curricular way, such as during Maths Week when we use Maths in PE, art and other subjects.

We use the Primary Advantage Maths approach in which children learn to use concrete resources, such as counters, blocks, plastic money and number lines, to develop a strong understanding of maths concepts. They then move on to using pictures to help them visualise a concept, before learning to handle numbers in abstract.         

Our aim is that all children enjoy maths and see its value in the real world. As such we focus on maths in a real-life context and fun, problem-solving activities. When children have shown a good understanding of the basic concepts, we stretch their learning by challenging them to explain their reasoning and show a depth of understanding, leading to mastery.

Mental maths is an important skill, taught in short bursts every day. Children are taught strategies to improve the speed of their mental calculations. We emphasise the importance of learning times tables and number bonds.

Homework for Maths is usually set once every fortnight (alternating with literacy), either in homework books or through online resources, such as My Maths. We also encourage parents to spend time every day helping their children learn the times tables and number bonds.

To view the Trust's Curriculum Map - Click here

Non-Core

At the heart of the Lion Academy Trust is the belief that access to an outstanding education is a right for all our children and young people. To achieve this goal, we have a consistent and continuous focus on developing and implementing outstanding educational practices. We continue to develop innovative and better ways to transform schools into centres of teaching and learning excellence and, as our results show, our robust, quality-driven approach has brought proven results. 
We recognise that Education is the most empowering force in the world. It creates knowledge, builds confidence, and breaks down barriers to opportunity.

For all children, it is the key to which they are able to open the door to a better life.

Our curriculum has been built around several key themes. Learning has to be sequential, and build upon prior knowledge, skills and understanding. This needs to lead to increasing independence and fluency. The development of core literacy skills, particularly reading is fundamental. 

Threaded through this is the idea that ambition and aspiration is not something that is only available to the elite. All children are given the opportunity to learn about fascinating people, wonderful and exotic places, and the wonders of the world . They develop an appreciation of the arts, culture and their heritage.  They are able to discuss and debate the way in which technology allows us to fit our potential and how to do this safely.

Alongside the knowledge and skills embedded throughout the curriculum content, when we were developing this curriculum; we asked ourselves some simple questions. What will children need to be system leaders of the future. The key characteristics of independence, resilience, perseverance, reflective and aspirational are interwoven within the assessment proficiency development of the children.

Our Curriculum and the resources alongside it, is the culmination of years of work by the very best teachers that the trust has. They have worked tirelessly to ensure that all children benefit from the very best curriculum that could be designed. 

We hope you enjoy the journey. 

To view our Art & Design Curriculum, click here
To view our Computing Curriculum, click here
To view our Geography Curriculum, click here
To view our History Curriculum, click here
To view our Science Curriculum, click here

MFL

Learning a foreign language is a necessary part of being a member of a multi-cultural society and provides an opening to other cultures. A high-quality languages education should foster children's curiosity and deepen their understanding of the world. The teaching should enable children to express their ideas and thoughts in another language and to understand and respond to its speakers, both in speech and in writing. It should also provide opportunities for them to communicate for practical purposes, learn new ways of thinking and read great literature in the original language. Language teaching should provide the foundation for learning further languages, equipping children to study and work in other countries.

Children have weekly lessons in Spanish throughout Key Stage 2, using the Linguascope programme of study in addition to other resources.  Areas covered include: numbers, colours, house and home, in town, food and drink, the classroom, clothes and hobbies. 

It is intended that when children leave Maple Grove, they will have a natural curiosity and confidence to explore, other countries, cultures and languages, accepting that, in a multi-lingual  society it is a valuable skill to be able to communicate effectively with others in another language. They will be engaged and prepared to continue language learning at secondary school

PHSE

The intent of our PSHE curriculum is to deliver a curriculum which is accessible to all and ensures that each of our pupils will know more, remember more and understand more about how to play a positive and successful role within our society, both as a child and as an adult within the future. Our aim is to provide pupils with a knowledge of their world, locally, nationally and globally and give them confidence to tackle many of the moral, social and cultural issues that are part of growing up within this. We aim to provide our children with opportunities for them to learn about rights and responsibilities and appreciate what it means to be a member of a diverse society.  Moreover, our pupils are encouraged to develop their sense of self-worth by playing a positive role in contributing to school life and the wider community. We challenge all of our pupils to look for opportunities to show the school values which are; Responsibility, Respect, Kindness, Aspiration and Honesty.

It is hoped that our overall curriculum is designed to directly support the pastoral education of our pupils as well as the academic outcomes that the school aims for. The school primarily uses resources from ‘Young Citizens’ (Go-Givers) to make links between our academic aims and the modern world in which they find themselves, empowering them operate positive, independently and safely within it. This is further enhanced by school assemblies, reflection time the local authority Sex and Drug Education Scheme of Work.

Music

At Maple Grove Primary School, it is our intent that we make music an enjoyable learning experience. We encourage children to participate in a variety of musical experiences through which we aim to build up the confidence of all children. Our teaching focuses on developing the children’s ability to understand rhythm and follow a beat. Through singing songs, children learn about the structure and organisation of music. We teach them to listen and to appreciate different forms of music. Children develop descriptive language skills in music lessons when learning about how music can represent different feelings, emotions and narratives. We also teach technical vocabulary such as volume, pitch, beat and rhythm and encourage children to discuss music using these terms.

The school also has whole class ensemble teaching in Years 3 and 4 where children are taught a specific musical instrument for a school year. In Year 3 and Year 4, the pupils are currently learning the ‘Doods’. These lessons incorporate teaching musical notation, singing, as well as learning to play an instrument. This further develops children’s confidence and natural curiosity to inspire a love of music. Opportunities are taken to perform in class, in assemblies and also to parents and the wider community.

Additional opportunities are offered in music, such as choir and Young Voices.

D&T

Design and Technology prepares children to deal with tomorrows rapidly changing world. It encourages children to become independent, creative problem solvers and thinkers as individuals and part of a team. It enables them to identify needs and opportunities and to respond to them by developing a range of ideas and by making products and systems. Through the study of Design and Technology, they combine practical skills with an understanding of aesthetic, social and environmental issues, as well as functions and industry. This allows them to reflect on and evaluate past and present technology, it's uses and impacts. 

It is the intent of Maple Grove Primary School for Design Technology to be taught in all year groups through at least one topic per term, which includes one topic relating to food. Design Technology projects are often made cross curricular - linking to other subjects taught.

The teaching of Design Technology across the school follows the National Curriculum through the use of Design and Technology Association's 'Projects On A Page' scheme.. Children design products with a purpose in mind and an intended user of the products. Food technology is implemented across the school with children developing an understanding of where food comes from, the importance of a varied and healthy diet and how to prepare this.

Design and Technology also embeds our Maple Grove Learning Behaviours. It is an inspiring, rigorous and practical subject, requiring creativity, resourcefulness, and imagination. Pupils design and make products that solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts. It is very cross - curricular and draws upon subject knowledge and skills within Mathematics, Science, History, Computing and Art. Children learn to take risks, be reflective, innovative, enterprising and resilient. Through the evaluation of past and present technology they can reflect upon the impact of Design Technology on everyday life and the wider world.

P.E.

At Maple Grove , we aim to provide a PE curriculum that pupils from Reception to Year 6 not only enjoy but also allows them to experience a range of activities that help them to develop their health, fitness and wellbeing. We intend to offer a high-quality physical education curriculum that inspires all pupils to succeed and excel in competitive sport and other physically-demanding activities. It provides opportunities for pupils to become physically confident in a way which supports their health and fitness. Opportunities to compete in sport and other activities build character and help to embed values such as fairness and respect.

Children are taught regularly by both teaching staff and a sports instructor from Reception to Year 6. The curriculum is further enhanced by participation in numerous sporting tournaments with other schools in the area and after school clubs. A play leader supervises sports activities at lunchtime, including: football, hockey, basketball and netball.

We follow the guidelines set by the national curriculum to ensure we offer a range of PE activities that allow each child to feel challenged and offer opportunities to progress further. The school follows the PE Hub programme of work directly aligned to the National Curriculum.

R.E.

“Religion and beliefs inform our values and are reflected in what we say and how we behave. RE is an important subject in itself, developing an individual’s knowledge and understanding of the religions and beliefs which form part of contemporary society. Religious education provokes challenging questions about the ultimate meaning and purpose of life, beliefs about God, the self and the nature of reality, issues of right and wrong, and what it means to be human. It can develop pupils’ knowledge and understanding of Christianity, of other principal religions, other religious traditions and worldviews that offer answers to questions such as these. RE also contributes to pupils’ personal development and well-being and to community cohesion by promoting mutual respect and tolerance in a diverse society. RE can also make important contributions to other parts of the school curriculum such as citizenship, personal, social, health and economic education (PSHE education), the humanities, education for sustainable development and others. It offers opportunities for personal reflection and spiritual development, deepening the understanding of the significance of religion in the lives of others – individually, communally and cross-culturally.”

This is delivered by the Essex Agreed Scheme Of Work (SACRE).

Children in Reception follow the Foundation Stage Early Years Curriculum.

The curriculum is organised into different areas of learning.

Prime Areas:

  • Personal, Social and Emotional Development
  • Physical Development
  • Communication and Language

Specific Areas:

  • Literacy
  • Mathematics
  • Understanding of the World
  • Expressive Arts and Design

For more information on the Early Years Curriculum, click here.

To view the Trust's Curriculum Map - Click here