Topic (Including Art & Design, Design Technology, Science, Geography, History and Music)
At Northill we deliver a creative curriculum which encapsulates a variety of National Curriculum subjects under a creative theme. This not only supports our pupils to develop learning in an engaging and immersive manner but also allows for pupils to make real-life links in their learning.
Through delivering the curriculum through this method we support our pupils to fully embrace their learning opportunities, learning from one another in the process.
Although we typically have a two year plan, it is important to know that our creative and immersive topics can be flexible. Teachers have carefully organised and crafted objectives into groups that are suitable to be taught together without disrupting the progress of learning for pupils in our mixed age classes. Our learning objectives are mapped in such a way that a topic theme can be adapted to the needs and interests of the pupils in the class at one time. For example, one year Key Stage One pupils may have a focus on a contrasting continent, such as South America, because this is relevant to the pupils in our school at the time, however the next time this topic returns in the cycle the teacher may choose to adapt the contrasting continent to another, fore example Australia, as this may be more relevant to the cohort of pupils in school and engage their interests more effectively for learning.
Principles for Topic Learning at Northill:
Implementation of ‘Topic’ based learning in KS1 and KS2:
- Each topic should include learning in Science, Art & Design, Design Technology, Music, History and Geography.
- To be taught across a whole term an should be immersive for all pupils in the class/es
- Topics should follow a pattern of real life, relatable experiences that align with our curriculum intent.
- Each Topic plan should consist of a number of ‘components of learning’ (at least one per subject)
- Each learning component should help to build an end of topic ‘summary’ of cumulative knowledge.
- End of Term summary activities can be a range of knowledge bank based activities, these should be purposeful and relatable (e.g. creating their own explanation text to demonstrate all learning gained in the topic Chocolate, with varying features and information such as a timeline, geographical locations, designed pieces, historical facts etc)
- Learning should be recorded progressively to enable pupils to reflect (Oscar Owl) on their learning and support, them in building their end of term unit.
- Teachers should plan time for pupils to ‘scrap book’ their learning. This can take a variety of forms, including photographs, reflections, written work, ICT or note taking.
Through adhering to these principles, impact of learning should be clear, progression in skills across a year as well as across the school should be identifiable and coherent.