At Hockley Heath Academy, we follow the New Primary National Curriculum. This comprises the CORE SUBJECTS: Mathematics, English and Science which are taught as stand-alone subjects and also through integrated topic themes. It also includes the FOUNDATION SUBJECTS: art and design, computing, design and technology, geography, history, languages (key stage 2 only), music and physical education. These are mainly taught through a topic theme each half-term. RE is taught as a stand-alone subject based on the Agreed Syllabus produced in Solihull.
The early years foundation stage
The Foundation Stage covers our Nursery (Foundation Stage 1 - Caterpillars and Butterflies) and Reception Class (Foundation Stage 2). The curriculum is organised into six areas of learning:
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
- Communication, Language and Literacy
- Problem Solving, Reasoning and Numeracy
- Knowledge and Understanding of the World
- Physical Development
- Creative Development
Progress in each of these areas is measured against the early learning goals. It is recorded in the Foundation Stage Profile and used to inform parents. We share the learning journey of our children using "Tapestry" which is an online journal recording all the learning and fun of children's early years education.
At Hockley Heath Academy we follow the National Curriculum for English. This is taught through a daily writing and daily reading lesson where children learn the skills appropriate to their age and ability. We also deliver regular spelling and handwriting sessions.
Reading is taught through a variety of whole class, guided group and individual sessions. The main reading scheme used in school is the "Oxford Reading Tree". This is supported through a graded home-reading system and a wide selection of library books, providing reading material and experience. Every child is encouraged to take their reading books home. A reading record booklet is completed and provides a home-link with parents.
Writing is given a high profile at Hockley Heath Academy. Children learn to write fiction, poetry and non-fiction through a range of genres. They also have the opportunity to apply the skills taught through their topic writing and through other subjects. We teach children to develop knowledge and understanding of basic grammar, punctuation and spelling rules through a designated weekly session. Children follow the "Write Dance" programme for handwriting when they first start school in Nursery, and later move to a cursive script.
Our aim at Hockley Heath Academy is to provide stimulating and challenging experiences in maths that result in confident, mathematically skilled and numerate children. To fulfil our aims, we strive to provide high quality teaching that is oral, interactive and lively. The children are encouraged to be active participants in all lessons and are supported in being independent learners.
A typical daily lesson may include:
Oral and mental starter
- Oral and mental work to reinforce and refine skills.
Main teaching and child activities
- Clear learning intentions shared with children.
- Direct teaching input.
- Opportunities for children to apply their learning in a variety of ways.
- Continued interaction and intervention as appropriate.
- Misconceptions identified.
- Feedback from children to identify progress and sort misconceptions.
- Summary of key ideas, what to remember.
- Consolidation, links made to other work, next steps.
Cornerstones topic based curriculum
Our theme-based curriculum is based around the "Cornerstone" approach which centres on the belief that children learn better when their interests and fascinations are allowed to flourish. Children are encouraged to explore subjects in a variety of ways and using an integrated approach. We fulfil the statutory requirements of the National Curriculum for all subjects through our project work. There is a rolling programme of topics that incorporate a broad coverage of subjects. Thus our provision ensures continuity and progression.
The Agreed Syllabus we follow was produced in Solihull following the publication of the Non-Statutory Framework for Religious Education.
Through the teaching of RE, we enable and encourage pupils to:
- Develop a knowledge and understanding of Christianity: learn about and learn from Christian faith and life;
- Develop a knowledge and understanding of the other principal religions found in the United Kingdom and their associated ways of living;
- Have respect for all people and their right to hold, or not to hold, religious beliefs;
- Appreciate the way in which religious beliefs shape life and how these beliefs contribute to personal morality and social responsibility;
- Appreciate the distinctive nature of religion within human experience and develop a personal sense of meaning in life.
The teaching of Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural principles, as well as British Values is enhanced through assemblies as well as through daily lessons. Seasonal events such as Easter, Harvest and Christmas, as well as multi-cultural festivals are celebrated.