Q & A session with Dr Phil Harding
We love to explore the past at Winterslow Primary School. Local and global history fascinates the children and you can hear the cogs of their curious minds whir, when they discover links to how we used to live. Even during lockdown, the enjoyment of investigating and learning has not faltered.
So when our good friend, Mr Museum - Owain Hughes mentioned that Dr Phil Harding (the British field archaeologist from the Channel 4 television series Time Team) would be willing to answer questions from the children, we jumped on the opportunity. The Year 3 children were asked to research the career of Dr Harding and to propose a question or two to him. His response was amazing! He and Owain took the time to record his answers and edit them into a beautiful, informative and at times emotive video. We appreciate the time, effort and kindness involved in doing this. To make a connection in these times of limited contact feels extra special.
In history pupils are encouraged to question their understanding of the past allowing them to enjoy all that history has to offer. Through the use of a variety of research, artefacts and school trips, pupils gain a deep understanding of significant events in British and World history. Children learn to challenge evidence and it’s reliability. They also understand how knowing about the past can impact the future!
Science stimulates and excites children’s curiosity about phenomena and events in the world around them. In our science lessons we link direct practical experience with ideas to engage our learners at every level. Welly walks form a key part of our science curriculum as we discover changes and events in our local environment. Through questioning we develop our ideas and explore theories. We discuss science based issues that may affect their own lives, the direction of society and the future of the world. We have been awarded the Primary Science Quality Mark at Silver level for the excellent provision of science in our school.
Children are taught number and calculation, shape and space and data handling skills. Much of our numeracy teaching takes a practical and problem solving approach and the children discover how maths surrounds them in everyday life. Teaching and Learning provides opportunities for daily arithmetic ensuring learning is continually revisited, so pupils have strong foundations in fundamental Mathematical skills.
Literacy is a skill for life and its value can be seen throughout the curriculum as well as in daily lessons. We encourage a love of reading and surround the children with an excellent variety of books both in the classroom and in the well stocked library. Our Creative Curriculum ensureswriting skills are developed through all subjects. All children take part in a school performance each year and we run poetry and debating events to help build the children’s confidence in speaking & listening which are enjoyed by all.
Geography at our school is challenging, motivational, topical and fun. In our diverse society children need, more than ever before to understand other people and different cultures by studying topics that include features of human geography. Geography teaches an understanding of place and environment. Children start by exploring through fieldwork their own environment and then go on to compare to other regions/countries in the UK and then build up to studying the rest of the world. Our geographical learning also motivates children to find out about the physical world and we encourage our children through carefully planned lessons to recognise their part of ensuring a sustainable development for the future at a local, regional and global level. To enable our children to learn, we develop the skills of research, investigation and problem solving. Children will acquire a variety of other skills relating to geography for eg. How to use, draw and interpret maps. We value the role of geography in nurturing inquisitive explorers of the future and to foster a desire to be excellent global citizens.
As a Church of England school our values and rules are rooted in our distinctive Christian ethos. Our RE sessions encourage children to ask and answer questions which develop their understanding about Christianity. Opportunities are then given to apply their ideas and questions to other World Faiths. Alongside RE, our daily Collective Worship is led by a range of community members. The voluntary organisation Open the Book, a representative from the Church, A member of the Senior Leadership Team and Class Teachers all play a part in delivering our Whole School Worships.
We are fortunate to have a Computer Suite which accommodates whole class teaching. Computing skills are taught and incorporated across the curriculum e.g. music composition, graphic art and programming and control of robots. Each of our class pages has been designed to encompass a blog in order to encourage the children to continue to develop their computer skills outside the classroom, they can then share this with their parents at home. We have a robust e-safety ethos in place which all of the children are aware of and adhere to.
All children in Key Stage 2 have Spanish lessons each week. Children learn the language much as they picked up their native tongue, through mimicking, songs, rhymes, stories and games. We have regular whole school assemblies in Spanish, where children practice songs and learn about Spanish culture as well as the place of Spanish in a global setting. In Key Stage 1 children listen to Spanish songs and learn basic vocabulary which they build on across the KeyStage. Each class devotes one term a year to exploring a story in depth from the Very Hungry Caterpillar (LaOruga Muy Hambrienta) to TheEnormous Turnip (El Nabo Gigante.) In Year 6 the children perform Little Red Riding Hood entirely in Spanish.
Music is taught as part of our enrichment programme and within the classroom. Peripatetic teachers visit the school weekly to teach optional music lessons in woodwind,string and brass instruments. The children enjoy performing in Collective Worship and for parents throughout the year.
Key Stage 1 Reading & Writing Schemes
EYFS Reading – Dandelion Readers, PIRA Reading Test Autumn & Summer Writing – No set writing scheme
Years 1 & 2 Reading – Dandelion Readers Schemes – this is a progressive phonic reading scheme using coloured levels following Book Bands classification. (Levelled) Guided
Rigby Star PIRA Reading Assessment Autumn/Spring/Summer.
Years 1 & 2 Writing – ‘Success for Writing’ & The National Curriculum expectations are used to assess writing.