Castle Hill Academy Castle Hill Academy

A Platanos Trust School

CURRICULUM INTENT

We are incredibly proud of our curriculum at Castle Hill Academy and how it has been specifically designed to meet the needs of all our learners. Our over-arching aim is to inspire a lifelong love of learning through a broad, skills based approach, within a safe, inclusive environment.

 

English

Power of Reading

English at Castle Hill Academy is taught through The Power of Reading. This is a well established scheme from the Centre of Literacy in Primary Education (CLPE) that builds a culture that focuses on ensuring the best practice in the whole class teaching of Literacy.

It achieves this through :-

  • Text-based units of work that place high quality literature at the heart of learning
  • It promotes creative teaching approaches that are proven to raise engagement and attainment
  • It develops a whole school culture that values and fosters the importance of reading FOR PLEASURE
  • Children explore fictional situations through talk or role-play, they become inspired to write in lots of different genres. 

 

Guided Reading

At Hale we use the Reciprocal Method of Guided Readingthis is a structured method of guided reading where children are gradually taught to take on group roles to explore and find meaning in texts. Children read in a small focused groups for 30 minutes everyday, to ensure they are learning the key objectives necessary for them to develop a life long love of learning.

This approach also 

  • Encourages pupils to think about their own thought process during reading.
  • Helps pupils learn to be actively involved and monitor their comprehension as they read.
  • Teaches pupils to ask questions during reading and helps make the text more comprehensible.

Whilst 

  • Emphasising teamwork and supporting independent comprehension skills.

 

Maths

White Rose Maths

We use the White Rose Maths programme to deliver a whole new culture of deep understanding, confidence and competence in maths – a culture that produces strong, secure learning and real progress. No matter what the child's starting points, we support the children to achieve excellence.   As part of our work on delivering a 'Mathematics Mastery' curriculum we use a multi-part lesson approach to teaching Maths, every lesson is split into discrete, flexible sections.

  • We start with a 'do now' task which can be used to recap previous learning or as an 'assessment for learning' tool.  
  • This will be followed by 'new learning' and 'paired language' work where the importance of using accurate, high-order vocabulary is essential.
  • This leads into 'developed learning' and an 'independent task' where children are required to challenge themselves daily.
  • Finally, the lesson concludes with a plenary which allows a review of learning.

High quality resources are essential in the teaching of Maths and all classrooms are equipped with Numicon - a concrete apparatus with supporting imagery to embed deep understanding.  Along with this, children have access to online resources which allow parents to support with home learning - Times Tables Rock Stars.

 

Cornerstones

Engage, Develop, Innovate, Express 

We have adopted the innovative Cornerstones approach which combines all the foundation subjects such as  art, DT, Geography, History etc into meaningful, engaging and exciting 'projects' for the children to learn over a half term period.  

Every project starts with a 'launch' with the aim of hooking learners in with a memorable experience.  This could be an exciting educational visit out or a workshop within school.  The launch could be an event or day worked into the curriculum such as the Y4 'Potions' day or the Y2 messy afternoon for 'Muck, Mess & Mixtures'.  The idea of the launch is to set the scene for learning and provide a context for the children, provoking curiosity and interest.

Over the next few weeks, our skilled staff team teach knowledge for depth and understanding, provide innovative opportunities for making and doing, enable imaginative scenarios that foster creative thinking, whilst allowing the children to develop new skills, encouraging enterprise and independent ideas.

Finally the project concludes with the 'express' stage.  Here we open up the school through an Exhibition afternoon where all family and friends are invited into school to share in the children's learning and successes.

All exhibition dates are available on the school calendar and details about linked curriculum visits and activities can be found in the virtual office section of the website.