Our Curriculum

At Latimer Primary School, our curriculum aims to shape the learning and experiences of our children throughout each year, through their primary experience and into the next stage of their education as well as outside in their local community.

Our ethos of ‘Developing Responsibility; Caring about Achievement and our ‘Simple Truths’, guides all of our day to day work and the decisions that we make. Careful analysis of our local area and many years of experience have helped us to build a deep understanding of the lives that our pupils lead and the needs of our community. This analysis intertwined with our ethos and values has helped us to shape the aims for our curriculum.

We share the vision for our children and the ambitious aims of our curriculum:

Our curriculum aims are that:

  • Our children take responsibility for their own learning and well-being; live positively within and contribute effectively to the school and local community.

  •  No child leaves without achieving the minimum expectation for primary pupils or being supported on the best path for their future.

  •  Our curriculum provides the opportunities for all pupils to broaden their aspirations and understand how to achieve them.

As a Leicestershire Maintained School we follow the national curriculum which has been shaped to meet the needs of all our children using our knowledge of the local area, children’s lifestyles and experiences.

Our full curriculum is outlined in the document below. Please take your time to find out what your child will be learning throughout their time at Latimer.

If you have any further questions about the school curriculum please speak to your Child’s class teacher or email the school office.

 

Mathematics is important in everyday life and, with this in mind, we promote a love of maths to enable our pupils to become enthusiastic, resilient and reflective learners. The purpose of maths at Latimer Primary School is to develop pupils’ ability to become confident and fluent in their knowledge of the number system, number facts, times-tables and calculation methods so that they can apply this to a range of increasingly complex problems and develop their skills of reasoning and abstract thinking.  

 The intention is to create a classroom environment where all pupils are encouraged to participate and contribute. Lessons are planned using a mastery mind set so that children have the opportunity to learn key skills, practise, consolidate, apply and master them; they build upon prior knowledge and develop a secure understanding of mathematical vocabulary. 

Meeting the needs of all pupils in Maths 

Teaching maths for mastery is different because it offers all pupils access to the full maths curriculum. As there is emphasis on promoting multiple methods of solving a problem, it builds self-confidence in pupils and helps them to gain a conceptual understanding. Taking a mastery approach, differentiation is provided through the questioning and scaffolding individual pupils receive in class or, for those pupils who grasp concepts quickly, challenged through more demanding problems which deepen their knowledge of the same content.  

Maths at Latimer is planned with a mindset for teaching ‘mastery’ of concepts rather than a surface level understanding. All teaching should be broken down into ‘small steps’ in a logical order that enable pupils to move through the maths curriculum at a swift pace while understanding how the structure of the maths being taught works. 

Representation and Structure: 

  • A Concrete, Pictorial, Abstract (CPA) approach is used to show children how the underlying maths or concept works. 
  • Choosing representations that precisely show how the underlying maths or concept works. 

Mathematical Thinking: 

  • Looking for and explaining patterns and relationships 
  • Making connections to previously taught concepts 
  • Using logical reasoning (e.g. tackling a problem in a certain way) 
  • Using reasoning stems to encourage children to structure their written and verbal thoughts 

Variation 

  • Using a variety of different examples to purposefully show certain features of maths. 

Fluency: 

  • Promoting quick recall of facts and procedures 
  • Show flexibility of using different methods and contexts 
  • Recognise the relationships and connections in maths 

Fluency  

 Start of the Day Activities (SODA) work enables children to revisit previous learning and embed key number skills. This retrieval could be learning from a previous lesson, previous week or a previous topic. Children also complete times-table activities such as TTRS at home and school and daily or weekly timed tests in Key Stage 2. 

Reasoning  

 Teachers plan their lessons with effective questions to provide children with opportunities to reason about their work and model their thinking out loud such as “What do you notice?” “What is the same and what is different?” “Explain how you know” “Is this true or false?” 

STEM sentences are displayed in the classroom and children are supported to use them verbally and in their written work. 

Problem Solving  

 All children have regular opportunities to problem solve and are taught techniques and strategies and they build up their resilience when faced with a challenge such as: 

  • Reading it out loud  
  • Highlighting key words. 
  • Drawing it out. 
  • Representing it in a bar-model or part-whole model. 
  • Use jottings or a written method. 

Teachers use the Latimer Primary School Mathematics Curriculum map and calculation policy alongside the National Curriculum when planning, which details the specific objectives, methods and teaching sequence for each year group. Teachers and children use a range of resources and images to aid representation before moving on to abstract written methods. 

Assessments 

White Rose pre and post unit assessments are used along with mid- term and end of year assessments which help teachers to gather an understanding of their pupil’s existing and developing knowledge and skills. This is used by teachers as a diagnostic tool to adapt teaching to meet the needs of all children and provide intervention when needed. 

 At the end of each year, the expectation is that children achieve Age Related Expectations (ARE) for their year group. Some children will have progressed further and achieved greater depth (GD). Children who have gaps in their knowledge receive appropriate support and intervention (where possible).  

 Those children who are not sufficiently fluent are provided additional support to consolidate their understanding before moving on. Pupils’ difficulties and misconceptions are identified through immediate formative assessment and addressed with intervention – commonly through individual or small group support during the lesson or later the same day. Where pupils are working significantly below their current year group’s objectives (i.e. a year 4 pupil working at year 2 level), they should follow the small steps from the appropriate year group.  

In EYFS and KS1 children are encouraged to explore maths through a play based, hands on approach; giving teachers the opportunity to teach mathematics which is both fun and engaging for all learners, no matter their mathematical ability.  We encourage all children to care about their own mathematical achievements and develop responsibility for their mathematical learning; making links, identifying patterns, reasoning using key vocabulary and becoming confident mathematicians.  

 In EYFS and KS1, teachers apply the mastery approach as laid out in the White Rose Scheme of Learning and believe fully that if children are given the opportunities to explore maths through concrete objects, pictorial representations and abstract thinking, all children will fulfil their potential.  

 Concrete – children have the opportunity to use concrete objects and manipulatives to help them understand and explain what they are doing.  

 Pictorial – children then build on this concrete approach by using pictorial  representations, which can then be used to reason and solve problems.  

 Abstract With the foundations firmly laid, children can move to an abstract approach using numbers and key concepts with confidence. 

 Each class has a range of counting materials which are easily accessible and the children are encouraged to use these to explore freely all areas of the maths curriculum. Children in EYFS and KS1 also undertake daily, independent morning maths activities (SODA work) which consolidates prior learning to ensure that skills and knowledge learnt can be applied and if necessary, re-taught. 

 The White Rose Scheme of Learning enables the teachers to set lessons which develop a child’s fluency and tasks which allow the children to progress at a similar pace. We follow the White Rose small step objectives as laid out in the scheme and staff refer to the calculation policy when teaching formal methods, understanding that sometimes children find their own efficient methods along the way. 

 The teachers apply Deepening Understanding (Digging deeper) to extend fluency, reasoning and problem solving. The children are also given the opportunity to apply their mathematical knowledge to science and other subjects. The expectation is that the majority of pupils will move through the programmes of study at broadly the same pace. However, the teachers make a professional judgement about when to progress based on the security of pupils’ understanding and their readiness to progress to the next stage. Pupils who grasp concepts rapidly are challenged through being offered rich mastery and sophisticated problems before any acceleration through new content. The children who are not sufficiently fluent with earlier material are given the opportunity to consolidate their understanding, through bespoke interventions and SODA work. 

 In KS1 children are set fortnightly fluency homework using the White Rose 1 Minute Maths App. The children’s scores are recorded for parents to view and observe their child’s progress with attempting fluency questions set within the four mathematical operations. 

MATHEMATICS IN KEY STAGE 2 

 The principal focus of mathematics teaching in lower key stage 2 is to ensure that pupils become increasingly fluent with whole numbers and the 4 operations, including number facts and the concept of place value. This should ensure that pupils develop efficient written and mental methods and perform calculations accurately with increasingly large whole numbers.  

 By the end of year 4, pupils should have memorised their multiplication tables up to and including the 12-multiplication table and show precision and fluency in their work. 

 The principal focus of mathematics teaching in upper key stage 2 is to ensure that pupils extend their understanding of the number system and place value to include larger integers. This should develop the connections that pupils make between multiplication and division with fractions, decimals, percentages and ratio. By the end of year 6, pupils should be fluent in written methods for all 4 operations, including long multiplication and division, and in working with fractions, decimals and percentages. 

 In Key Stage 2, teachers fundamentally use the small steps and resources from Power Maths. They use this alongside other quality resources to create interactive and engaging lessons. Year 3 is a transitioning year, gradually moving to Power Maths in KS2, whilst still having access and use of other resources such as White Rose.

Spelling and Phonics at Latimer Primary School

At Latimer Primary School we follow the ‘Essential Letters and Sounds’ (ELS) phonic scheme to teach phonics and reading from Foundation Stage to Year 1.  Phonics is taught daily and children are taught in small groups targeted at the specific phonics phases. Children progress rapidly through the phases and intervention is put in place for children that may need additional support.  This continues into Year 2 for some children.

ELS 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.

Phonics Phases

ELS is divided into different phases to enable children to learn sounds progressively and in a certain order. Children learn to identify sounds and to blend them to decode words and segment them to spell words. Alongside this words that cannot be broken down easily, (we call “tricky words”) are taught to the children.

  • Phase One (Nursery/Foundation Stage): Activities are divided into seven aspects, including environmental sounds, instrumental sounds, body sounds, rhythm and rhyme, alliteration, voice sounds and finally oral blending (putting sounds together to make words) and segmenting (breaking words down into the separate sounds).
  • Phase Two (Foundation Stage): Learning 19 letters of the alphabet and one sound for each. Blending sounds together to make words. Segmenting words into their separate sounds. Children begin to read simple captions.
  • Phase Three (Foundation Stage and Year 1): The remaining 7 letters of the alphabet, one sound for each. Digraphs (two letters making one sound) such such as ch, oo, th, ai, ee are introduced.  Children become able to read captions, sentences and questions.
  • Phase Four (Foundation Stage and Year 1): No new grapheme-phoneme correspondences are taught in this phase. Children learn to blend and segment longer words made up of more than 3 sounds – example shampoo, chimpanzee, Manchester.
  • Phase Five (Year 1, may continue into Year 2 for some children): Moves on to the “complex code”. Children learn alternative ways to make different sounds example ai (as in rain), a (as in acorn), ay (as in day), aigh (as in straight).  Split digraphs are introduced (eg a-e making the ai sound in cake). Distinguishing between homophones (words that sound the same but have a different meaning) – for example sea/see, meet/meat, great/grate.

For parent information about ELS phonics please see their website Essential Letters and Sounds – Oxford Owl

Year 2 Spelling Curriculum

Building upon ELS, our pupils then move onto ELS Spelling in Year 2.  This scheme revisits much of the phonics learnt in Year 1 but with a focus on spelling rather than learning to read.  Children consolidate their phonics knowledge and apply this in their writing.

Suffixes, prefixes and apostrophes are also introduced as part of spelling and children continue to learn about homophones and ways to remember how to spell ‘common exception words’ (as defined in the National Curriculum).

 

Year 3, 4, 5 & 6 Spelling Curriculum

For pupils in Key Stage 2 we follow the ‘No Nonsense’ spelling program.  Any pupils who continue to need phonics support will continue to receive this.

The ‘No Nonsense’ spelling programme gives guidance on how to teach the strategies, knowledge and skills pupils need to learn. The focus of the programme is on the teaching of spelling, which embraces knowledge of spelling conventions – patterns and rules; but integral to the teaching is the opportunity to promote the learning of spellings, including statutory words, common exceptions and personal spellings.

Pupils receive at least 2 spelling sessions a week and will take spellings home to learn and will be tested in school weekly.  Grammar, Punctuation and Vocabulary is taught 3 times a week in Key Stage 2, and these lessons also provide opportunities to consolidate and revisit spelling learning.

 

For an overview of how the curriculum is sequenced across the school please see our curriculum booklet.

2023 Curriculum Document

Can parents withdraw their children from Relationships and Sex Education? 

 As part of our statutory PSHE provision to pupils, we deliver a comprehensive Relationships and Health Education curriculum. We ensure that all statutory objectives are adequately covered so that all children learn about different relationships, different families, physical/mental health and wellbeing and staying safe.  

 The Department for Education guidance states that Sex Education is not statutory in primary schools but recognises that the Science curriculum includes subject content in related areas, such as learning about the human body as it grows from birth to old age (including puberty) and reproduction in some plants and animals. 

 Parents and carers do not have the right to withdraw their children from lessons that cover statutory Relationships and Health Education objectives. Nor do they have the right to withdraw their child from lessons that cover national curriculum science objectives. This includes all the information on puberty and how the human body changes.  

 The Department for Education have stated that primary schools may also choose to deliver supplementary Sex Education content. These lessons include learning about differences between males and females and human reproduction. 

 Under this guidance, the following Relationships and Sex Education objectives will be taught from EYFS- Year 6 following the Christopher Winter Project scheme:  

  •  EYFS – Our Lives (Our day, keeping ourselves clean, and families) 
  • Year 1 – Growing and Caring for Ourselves (Keeping clean, growing and changing, and families and care) 
  • Year 2 – Differences (Differences: boys and girls, differences: male and female, and naming the body parts) 
  • Year 3 – Valuing Difference and Keeping Safe (Differences: male and female, personal space, and family differences) 
  • Year 4 – Growing Up (Growing and changing, what is puberty? And puberty changes and reproduction 
  • Year 5 – Puberty (Talking about puberty, male and female changes, and puberty and hygiene  
  • Year 6 – Puberty, Relationships and Reproduction (Puberty and reproduction, understanding relationships, conception and pregnancy, and communication in relationships) 

 Parents and carers do have the right to withdraw their child from lessons covering this non-statutory content. However, we would urge any parents and carers considering withdrawing their child from these lessons to consider what is being taught, how it is being taught and how important this education is for all children. Primary Sex Education ensures children have the knowledge to keep them safe and prepares them for statutory Sex Education in KS3.  

 Any children who are withdrawn from lessons covering non-statutory content will be provided with alternative learning in another learning space.  

Our Relationships, Health and Sex Education is fully inclusive to meet the needs of all our pupils. We fully believe that all children should learn about these important life skills in an open, honest and safe environment. We also believe that they should be taught in an age-appropriate and engaging way.  

Our Relationships and Sex Education Policy can be found here: Relationships-and-Sex-Education.pdf 

 If you have any concerns about our Relationships and Sex Education curriculum, please contact the school office to book a meeting with your child’s teacher to discuss these concerns.