60 children are admitted to the school every year and are split into two classes of 30.
Although the schools are organised in class groups our arrangements are flexible. Curriculum experiences are planned for all classes in each year group (see curriculum overviews) and topics and trips are planned for together. We sometimes teach children in small groups in order to focus the learning.
Teachers in each year group plan meticulously to meet the needs of your child and to satisfy the requirements of the National Curriculum. Teachers may work with their own class or they may work with children from the whole year group. There are times when an individual child or a small group of children may work with a teacher or learning support assistant away from the classroom.
Often a teacher with a particular expertise, e.g. mathematics, music, P.E., science and dance will take another teacher’s class for a specific lesson.
On some days you will find children from one class working on different activities at the same time, equally you will see formal whole class teaching taking place. The key to which method is used in our school is a combination of the needs of the children and the requirements of the subject being taught. We will always attempt to match our teaching to the learning styles of our pupils. Sometimes pupils are set by ability. The pupils cover the same syllabus but the work covered is closely matched to the ability of the children.
The National Curriculum and organisation of Learning
At Marion Richardson School the programmes of study for all the compulsory subjects of the National Curriculum are followed.
The National Curriculum, which was introduced by the 1988 Education Reform Act requires schools to teach four core subjects – English, Mathematics, Science and ICT and six “foundation” subjects – History, Geography, Art, Music, DT and Physical Education, Religious Education, and Modern Foreign Languages (in Key stage 2). These subjects are taught in every year group from Year 3 to Year 6
In our curriculum planning we always endeavour to ensure that activities are matched to the individual needs, development and ability of the children.
As far as possible a cross-curricular, thematic approach, consistent with recognised good practice, will continue to be used in all year groups. Please see the overviews that are published on this website for each term in each year group. We operate a creative curriculum. Please note a comprehensive review of the wider curriculum will be undertaken in the summer of 2013.
Please also note the following:
- Parents have a right to withdraw their child from Religious Education. Parents are requested to write to the Headteacher to request that a child does not take part in Religious Education lessons. Children would still take part in daily assembly but not the part that is concerned with a corporate Act of Worship. Parents are also entitled to withdraw their child from Sex Education but not the part of this that is covered by the Science Curriculum. Parents should again put this request in writing to the Headteacher.
- The swimming programmes of study are covered in this school at Year 5, as the children visit the local swimming pool to do this.
Literacy and Numeracy
All children have a daily Numeracy and Literacy lesson. Maths and English are also taught through other subjects as part of our cross curricular topics.
Our approach to the teaching of reading is through group guided reading in class but there are also individual programmes for children who have not yet achieved at least an average standard in reading. Phonics is formally taught in small groups (see section on teaching of reading and phonics). All children are taught spelling as a weekly activity. The school has an agreed approach to the teaching of writing known as ‘guided writing.’
The school has a computer suite with at least one computer per child for class lessons. There are also computers around the school and at least one computer in each classroom. Computers are used to teach computer skills but also to enhance learning across the curriculum. Children have class lessons to be taught computer skills but also apply those skills in other subject areas.
Information technology also facilitates children using many other items of equipment such as cameras, visualisers, recording equipment and sound equipment. In the summer the school intends to introduce a new scheme of work called “Rising Stars”.
Children’s progress is assessed against attainment targets and will be formally reported to parents in Parent Consultation meetings during the year and one detailed written report. Informal consultations may take place at other times.
Enriching and Extending Learning
In addition to the compulsory National Curriculum Programmes of Study, the school has a comprehensive programme of enrichment activities. These include
- Residential trips to Thriftwood
- A programme of day trips, visits and visitors in every year group
- A large selection of clubs both before and after school
- Small group musical instrument lessons
- Cycle training and first aid training in Year 6
- Themed days such as world book day
- Competitive sporting events
- Inclusive inter school sports days