At Heworth School we aim to achieve excellent teaching and learning through our Flourish curriculum. As a Christian school, we recognise that each child has unique potential, given by God, and we have a responsibility to help them to engage, make the most of this potential and aim to give children a lifelong love of learning, thus preparing them for the future in an ever-changing world.
We believe that every one of our children is a unique gift from God and that we should support them in their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development as well as in academic areas. Through doing this will they be able to truly flourish.
‘Be Nice. Dream Big and Work Hard.’
Why the Flourish curriculum?
The Flourish curriculum is underpinned by our mission:
‘To help each child flourish as we believe they are all unique and a gift from God.’
This is rooted in our belief that Jesus came so that everyone can flourish and have ‘life in all its fullness’. At Heworth we want our curriculum to support and fuel this so that all children can have a full life and know how precious, wonderful and unique they are.
‘I have come in order that you might have life—life in all its fullness.’
‘I praise you because I am wonderfully made.’
We want our Flourish curriculum to inspire our children to Be Nice. Dream Big and Work Hard. We want to develop children who are resilient and have a positive self-image. We want our children, when they leave Heworth, to be kind and compassionate to themselves and others in the diverse world in which we live. We want our children to be knowledgeable, creative and confident to apply what they know.
What about our School Values?
Within our Flourish Curriculum, our values of Compassion, Trust, Endurance and Forgiveness shine through.
- We show compassion through sensitivity to pupils’ feelings towards their learning, empowering them to continue to develop through encouragement, challenge and passionate teaching.
- We show trust through building strong relationships with pupils and their families.
- We encourage our children to follow the example of Jesus and to forgive others and themselves.
- Pupils are encouraged to develop endurance to become creative, active learners who are not afraid to experiment or to make mistakes.
Our school enables children to understand the Christian faith, especially as expressed in the Anglican Church. We are committed to nurturing, encouraging and challenging those of all faiths and none, supporting children to express their personal beliefs and philosophies in an open, accepting and inclusive environment.
“So, prepare your minds for action.”
1 Peter 1:13
How do we organise our curriculum?
We intend to make learning irresistible to our children through a series of exciting topics based on challenge and discovery. Within these topics, our curriculum provides all children with the opportunity to develop and retain knowledge across a wide range of subjects. We value the importance of every subject we teach and build on key concepts, year by year. Within our topic approach, links are made between subjects in order to promote effective cross curricular work and transference of skills and knowledge. We plan subjects using the objectives from the National Curriculum.
Through the passionate approach of teaching staff, visitors and parent input, topics give our children the opportunity to become actively engaged in their own learning through questioning, problem solving and discovery. For example a topic on Roman Empire would start with an overarching title like, ‘What impact has the Roman Empire had on us?’ Through this, children begin to investigate and develop their skills and knowledge. Topics start with a ‘hook’ into their learning through an activity such as drama, the presentation of some clues, a visitor, or an item which needs to be constructed. There is also opportunity to build on the children’s own interests, questions and personal targets as we learn and investigate together.
How do we plan for progress in our curriculum?
The Flourish curriculum covers the subjects in the 2014 Primary National Curriculum: the core subjects of English, Mathematics, RE and Science; and the foundation subjects of: Art and Design, Computing, Design and Technology, Languages, Geography, History, Relationship & Sex Education, Music and Physical Education. As a Church School, we place particular emphasis on the teaching of Religious Education, using guidance provided by the York Diocesan Syllabus. RE is regarded as being an important additional core subject in our curriculum.
Teachers and staff plan together as a team, sharing responsibility for understanding how the curriculum progresses across the year groups and why. Within subjects, we make sure the children understand what it is to be a historian, an artist, a writer and so on through the use of a range of formative and summative assessment tools. These include: The Rainbow Continuum, Pathfinder Academy Subject Trackers (reading, writing and maths) and end of topic assessments. These help staff to track the key learning objectives, knowledge and skills we want the children to master.
Collaboration across the teaching team is what makes our curriculum so special. Teachers are excited to work as a group and to understand the part they play in the bigger learning picture.
Timetabling is flexible to ensure there will be discrete teaching of reading, writing, spelling and grammar, maths, science, RE, art, PE, music, MfL and computing. This means that some subjects will be taught separately from other subjects where there is a need for pupils to build upon skills daily or weekly. Wherever possible, links will be made across the curriculum / to key life-skills, ensuring once more that these skills are transferable.
Pupils are supported in achieving their potential through careful planning and assessment. Teachers plan using flexible groupings with differentiated outcomes, which may change weekly depending on the progress each individual child is making. Pupils know what they are doing well and what they need to do to improve through precise marking and feedback, with children being asked to make improvements or complete further challenges that the teacher has set them. Children can see the progression they make through their exercise books, such as the WOW write book. Teachers use layered targets to personalise the learning for each individual and pupils can explain what they need to do in order to achieve each target.
Pupils are actively encouraged to take risks and are shown that it is okay to make mistakes and to learn from them. As a result of this, our children become resilient, life-long learners. Homework activities are planned thoughtfully to enable children to extend their knowledge and interests.
How do we value the Arts?
A creative approach to the curriculum makes learning enjoyable for the children whilst giving them the chance to transfer and embed key skills and knowledge. As an integral part of a creative curriculum, we place great emphasis on the arts. Local musicians and artists are regularly invited to lead workshops. Our pupils are fortunate to receive specialist skilled teaching in music, art, PE and MFL. Childhood is enriched with the Flourish curriculum through numerous opportunities for our children to play and perform in sporting, music, dance and drama events.
How do the children experience a wide and engaging curriculum?
Yes! From educational visits off site, to places linked to topic areas or a specific subject to in-house workshops and guests, the children enjoy a school day designed to engage, challenge, allow for thinking and encourage reflection. After-school clubs and lunchtime groups for sports, computing, art, maths, recycling, choir, eco-club and many more all take place in this thriving school curriculum offer.
How do we enrich the children’s spiritual, moral, social and cultural understanding, as well as their personal development, in matters of health, economics and wellbeing?
Our children come together daily for Collective Worship as whole school, in key stages and in classes. These are led by school staff and by local Church leaders and Christian charity groups. Through this, children have opportunities to reflect and engage in important moral, social and religious issues as well as being encouraged to make a positive difference in school, at home and in their local community – To Be Nice. Dream Big and Work Hard.
Children have weekly PHSE time when they spend time learning, discussing and thinking about: healthy lifestyles; keeping safe both in real life and online; learning to respect the different viewpoints of others in our school community and the wider world.
How does being part Pathfinder Multi Academy Trust enhance our curriculum?
We are proud to be part of the Pathfinder Multi Academy Trust. Heworth was one of the original four schools that worked together to form the trust which began in August 2016.
Our staff have many opportunities throughout the year to meet and to work with colleagues in their own year groups across the other academy schools. These provide great opportunities to learn from each other, to work together and to share ideas.
As well as this, core subject leaders meet regularly in person and online to develop teaching and learning across the trust in their own subject specialism.
How else do we ensure that all children flourish at Heworth?
Heworth School is a close knit community where each child is seen as an individual and teaching staff work hard to ensure that the curriculum is fully inclusive to all. Our pupils and parents are fortunate to have access to a fully trained ELSA (Emotional Support Literacy Assistant). We believe that children learn better when they are happy in school hence our ELSA supports children, when required, with their emotional needs.
Separate documents can be accessed which explain our Special Needs offer and Early Years Foundation Stage.
Ultimately, the aim of the Flourish curriculum is to produce children who:
- are happy and feel safe at school
- have a love of learning
- are resilient and flexible learners who understand what they do well and what they need to do to improve even further
- are creative, independent and active learners
- have a good sense of fairness and justice
- feel confident and well prepared to take their next steps into an ever-changing world.
- We want our Flourish curriculum to inspire our children to Be Nice. Dream Big and Work Hard.
- We want to develop children who are resilient and have a positive self-image.
- We want our children, when they leave Heworth, to be kind and compassionate to themselves and others in the diverse world in which we live.
- We want our children to be knowledgeable, creative and confident to apply what they know.